A Message from our Chair
2019 has been full of excitement and busy activity. I am extremely proud of our department and would like to share some news and highlights of a few of our recent achievements, exciting new grants, projects and awards for many of our faculty and students.
In January, Roghayeh (Leila) Barmaki, Assistant Professor, was part of the team Move2Improve who won Best Virtual Reality Prize for creating a tool from scratch within 5-days at the Reality Virtually Hackathon at MIT. The physical therapy game was designed to make upper body mobility treatment more fun.
Lori Pollock, Alumni Distinguished Professor, co-organized a summit in March on improving computer skills in First State schools. Along with Associate Professor Terry Harvey and another colleague, Pollock received a 3-year $1 million grant that focuses on computer-science-related professional development for K-12 teachers through their program Partner4CS.
On April 30th, Sury Gupta, senior in Computer Science Honors program minoring in Cybersecurity, was co-founder of the first place Hen Hatch Horn entrepreneurial team, winning $20K to further grow their venture, 360VR Technology, a virtual reality and drone solutions company to aid emergency services with pre-incident active and post-incident planning.
Xinxin Qu, doctoral student in Computer Science, was one of the Ph.D. students honored in May with the Excellence in Graduate Student Teaching Award.
Cathy Wu, Unidel Edward G. Jefferson Chair Professor and one of the multidisciplinary UD HeNN (Help Near and Now) team leaders, partnered with Greenline Business Group and CompassRed, leading data analytics to improve utilization and user experience to increase community engagement and network building to identify gaps in services that will inform care and treatment providers and policy-makers via a new smartphone app designed for opioid users, loved ones and providers.
Sunita Chandrasekaran, Assistant Professor, collaborated with FNLCR (Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research) to push the limits of high-performance computing for cancer research. Sunita is also one of a multidisciplinary team of eight scientists who’ve been selected to develop apps for the ORNL (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) exascale computers which can do a billion billion calculations per second.
Hagit Shatkay, Professor, co-led a two-year $1 million grant from the NSF under the “Harnessing the Data Revolution” initiative developing computational methods to accelerate data-intensive discovery in astroparticle physics to identify and localize dark-matter particles.
This fall, we sent our largest contingency to the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference in Orlando, Florida. Grace Hopper is the world’s largest gathering of women technologists and we are very proud to have supported our students in furthering their careers for the 5th year in a row. This year’s list included faculty members Lena Mashayekhy and Debra Yarrington, students Kate Bagshaw, Hannah Bridge, Gianna Bugieda, Olivia Caponigro, Aashaka Desai, Emily Evans, Talia Feldamn, Sophia Freaney, Xing Gao, Alexandra Hurst, Sarah Joyce, Celeste Lemus, Elena MacDonald, Hannah Martin, Da’Jha Smith, Maria van Venrooy, Julia Walker, Haoran Wei, Jingran Zhang, and mentors Alina Christenbury and Mayara Gimenes de Souza.
I want to extend a special thank you to all of our 2019 sponsors! Your generosity made a significant impact on the lives of our students. As the trend for increased growth and success in our department continues, together we can continue to create exceptional opportunities in our department.
Chair, Department of Computer & Information Sciences