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Recent News


PhD student Parker Riley awarded Barnard Fellowship

May 6, 2019

Third-year PhD student Parker Riley (supervised by Professor Daniel Gildea) was awarded the Arts, Sciences and Engineering Donald M. and Janet C. Barnard Fellowship in recognition of his strong research record, as well as his clear commitment to mentoring, outreach, and service to the department and field. Parker Riley is working on the problem of learning translation models between languages for which no parallel text (translated document pairs) are available. His work has already resulted in one journal article in the journal Computational Linguistics, one first-author paper in the proceedings of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL), and another paper currently under review for ACL.


PhD student Andrew Read-McFarland wins Curtis Award

May 3, 2019

Second-year PhD student Andrew Read-McFarland was selected as one of the winners of the 2019 Edward Peck Curtis Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student. Andrew was recognized by faculty and students as consistently going above and beyond the expectations for a graduate TA. Professor Lane Hemaspaandra noted, "Andrew was an exceptional TA. He showed true affinity for the material, and dedication to helping young minds not just learn the material, but also see its beauty and applicability. He was very generous with his time, he truly cared, and as a cherry on top he was strong even on the type of logistics that people think are boring yet actually are an important part of supporting the students."


Graeme McGuire '19 Receives Fulbright Grant

May 1, 2019

Computer Science and Linguistics dual major Graeme McGuire '19 (Take5) was offered a grant in the prestigious Fulbright U.S. Student Grant program. The Fulbright program is designed to promote mutual understanding and peace between the US and other nations through educational and cultural exchange.


George Ferguson Wins Professor of the Year Award

April 22, 2019

On Friday, April 19th, Computer Science Professor George Ferguson was named the Engineering Professor of the Year at the Students' Association Awards. Ferguson is the Co-Director of the Computer Science Undergraduate Program and teaches "Artificial Intelligence" and "Computation & Formal Systems."


CS Undergraduate Samuel Triest '20 wins Gold Medal in ACM SRC

April 19, 2019

Undergraduate Computer Science major Samuel Triest '20 was named the Gold Medalist of ACM's Student Research Competition (SRC) at the 24th ACM International Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems (ASPLOS). The SRC is a long-standing tradition of ACM that offers a unique forum for undergraduate and graduate students to present their original research before a panel of judges and attendees at well-known ACM-sponsored and co-sponsored conferences.


PhD student Louis Jenkins awarded Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship

April 17, 2019

First-year Ph.D. student Louis Jenkins has been awarded a US Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship, the first such award in the department’s history.  Louis is a 2017 graduate of Bloomsburg University (part of the Penn State system) and a part-time consultant for Pacific Northwest National Laboratory as a specialist for Cray's Chapel programming language.  He received honorable mention in the Computing Research Association’s 2017 Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher competition, based largely on his work on high-performance concurrent hash maps for the Go programming language.  For his doctoral thesis he hopes to exploit emerging persistent memory technologies to enhance productivity and performance of fault-tolerance mechanisms in high performance computing.


Brynn Wilkins wins Department Coordinator & Leader Award

April 12, 2019

At the 3rd annual Gwennies Awards, hosted by the Gwen M. Greene Center for Career Education and Connections, the Computer Science Undergraduate Program Manager Brynn Wilkins was awarded the Department Coordinator & Leader Award. The Gwennies are awards given by the Gwen M. Greene Center to collaborative partners who exemplify the mission, values, and vision of the Greene Center.


MD/PhD student Jesse Wang, advised by Prof. Henry Kautz, named a finalist in the ACP Innovation Challenge

April 11, 2019

Jesse Wang, an MD/PhD (Translational Biomedical Science) student advised by URCS Professor Henry Kautz, earned a spot as one of four finalists in the American College of Physicians' Innovation Challenge based on his proposal to create a virtual assistant to facilitate patient-physician communication by automating eRecord maintenance using speech recognition and NLP. 


Sam Lerman receives Honorable Mention in NSF GRFP Competition

April 10, 2019

Second-year URCS PhD student Samuel (Sam) Lerman received Honorable Mention in the National Science Foundation's 2019 Graduate Research Fellowship Program competition. Sam is co-advised by Prof. Henry Kautz (Computer Science) and Prof. Charles Venuto (Neurology, URMC), and his interdisciplinary research involves applying deep learning to the biomedical domain and reinforcement learning.


Maisha Idris '19 Highlighted as First Generation Student

March 11, 2019

Computer Science major Maisha Idris '19 dreamed of attending college as a child, despite long odds. Her parents were immigrants from Bangladesh who settled in New York City. Neither graduated from high school. Both worked low-paying jobs.


Zhen Bai Receives Sykes Engineering Faculty Award

February 26, 2019

Congratulations to Assistant Professor Zhen Bai who has been awarded the Wadsworth C. Sykes Engineering Faculty Award to support the development of a new course “AR/VR Interaction Design”. The course will be offered in Fall 2019 and aims to provide an introductory overview of the concepts, principles, technologies and special topics of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality.


Gianna Macri's '19 Experience in Peru

February 18, 2019

She has taken a demanding course load of computer science, linguistics, languages, and engineering. She walked onto the varsity crew team her freshman year. She interned each of the last four summers at IBM, GE and Amazon.


Jackson Abascal '19 and Qiuyue Sun '20 Win CRA Awards

February 1, 2019

The Computer Science department is thrilled to have two undergraduates recognized by the Computing Research Association’s (CRA) Outstanding Undergraduate Research Awards. Jackson Abascal ’19 was selected as a Finalist and Qiuyue Sun ’20 was selected as an Honorable Mention.


Professor Luo named AAAI Fellow

January 28, 2019

Professor Jiebo Luo has been elected as an AAAI fellow in 2019 for "significant contributions to the fields of computer vision and data mining, and particularly pioneering work on multimodal understanding for sentiment analysis, computational social science, and digital health."


ROC HCI Group is featured on CCC's "Great Innovative Ideas" series

December 11, 2018

Research done by the Rochester Human-Computer Interaction (ROC HCI) was highlighted by the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) of the Computing Research Association (CRA) in their "Great Innovative Ideas" series for December 2018. The series highlights the work that group has done in applying machine learning techniques to analyze and model the complex nuances and interplay of verbal language, facial expressions, gestures, and intonation in human communication. This work has led to his group's development of several AI systems to assist diverse populations of people to improve their communication skills through interaction with online tools (see ROC SpeakLISSA, and CoCo).


Three faculty members from CS are named ACM Fellows

December 10, 2018

Three of the 56 newly elected fellows of the Association for Computer Machinery (ACM) are faculty members of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the University of Rochester. Two hold primary appointments in the Computer Science Department (Professor and Chair Sandhya Dwarkadas and Professor Jiebo Luo), and one holds a secondary appointment in Computer Science (Professor and Dean of the Hajim School Wendi Heinzelman).


URCS alumna Andrea Salgian promoted to full professorship

December 6, 2018

Dr. Andrea Salgian (PhD, 2001), was promoted to the rank of full professor at The College of New Jersey in Fall 2018. Her research interests include: human computer interaction, gesture recognition, object recognition, music information retrieval, computer vision, and artificial intelligence. 


URCS alumna Nasrin Mostafazadeh named to Forbes 30 under 30 (Science)

November 14, 2018

Nasrin Mostafazadeh (PhD 2017) has been named to the Forbes 2019 30 under 30 (Science) for her work on storytelling and commonsense reasoning. Nasrin serves as a Senior Research Scientist at Elemental Cognition, where she applies her expertise in AI/NLP to building programs that are better able to understand and collaborate with humans.  


URCS PhD student Gene Kim attends Heidelberg Laureate Forum 2018

October 8, 2018

Gene Kim, a fourth-year computer science PhD student advised by Professor Len Schubert, was selected by ORAU (Oak Ridge Associated Universities) and the NSF as one of the members of the American Delegation to the Heidelberg Laureate Forum, which took place from September 23-28, 2018. Gene recently returned from the event, a week-long conversation between the old guard and young researchers in the fields of computer science and mathematics. The event included a wide-range of lectures by the laureates – from an introduction of AI and deep learning, to algebraic geometry, and even laser cooling for improving atomic clocks! 


Professor Scott receives 2018 Hajim Lifetime Achievement Award

September 21, 2018

Professor Michael Scott was awarded the Hajim School of Engineering & Applied Sciences 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his track record of excellence in research, teaching, and leadership.


Professor Luo receives IEEE Region 1 Technological Innovation (Academic) Award

September 20, 2018

Jiebo Luo, professor of computer science, has been named the 2018 recipient of the Region 1 Technological Innovation (Academic) Award from IEEE for his contributions in computer vision and data mining. IEEE is the world’s largest technical professional association for the advancement of technology; the technological innovation award recognizes distinguished development, advancement and pursuit of the IEEE’s technical objectives.


Zhengyuan Yang wins the 2018 ICPR Best Industry Related Paper Award

September 3, 2018

Zhengyuan Yang, a third-year PhD student working in Professor Jiebo Luo’s group, won the 2018 ICPR Best Industry Related Paper Award (BIRPA) for his paper entitled “End-to-end Multi-Modal Multi-Task Vehicle Control for Self-Driving Cars with Visual Perception.” This paper was the result of a collaborative project funded by SAIC (the Shanghai Automotive Innovation Center in San Jose, CA), and was recognized as a work that not only exemplifies excellence in research, but also the potential to have a commercial impact.


Undergraduate Research Assistant Featured on WXXI Radio Show

August 31, 2018


URCS alumnus Matthew R. Boutell promoted to full professorship

August 15, 2018

Matt Boutell (URCS Ph.D. 2005 - co-advised by Profs. Chris Brown and Jiebo Luo) was recently promoted to Professor of Computer Science and Software Engineering at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. Prof. Boutell specializes in image recognition, machine learning, and pattern recognition. He received the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's Dean’s Outstanding Teaching Award in 2016 and was a Fulbright Scholar at Zambia’s Copperbelt University from 2011-2012.


Professor Zhu receives Honorable Mention in the SIGARCH/TCCA Outstanding Dissertation Award competition

June 6, 2018

Assistant Professor Yuhao Zhu has received an Honorable Mention for the ACM SIGARCH/IEEE CS TCCA Outstanding Dissertation Award for "innovations in computer architecture, spanning hardware design, runtime orchestration, and programming language implementation, for making the Web energy-efficient."


Professor Hoque receives NSF CAREER award

May 31, 2018

Congratulations to Ehsan Hoque, who has just received a CAREER (Faculty Early Career Development) award from the National Science Foundation. These are NSF’s “most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization.”


URCS alumnus Xipeng Shen promoted to full professorship

May 29, 2018

Xipeng Shen (URCS Ph.D. 2006) has been promoted to Full Professor in the Department of Computer Science at North Carolina State University (NCSU).  He moved to NCSU in 2014 from The College of William and Mary, where he was the Adina Allen Term Distinguished Associate Professor.  Prof. Shen's research is in the areas of Programming Systems and Machine Learning.  He received the DOE Early Career Award, NSF CAREER Award, Google Faculty Research Award, and IBM CAS Faculty Fellow Award. He is an ACM Distinguished Speaker, and a senior member of IEEE.  His former graduates are now faculty members at Rutgers The State University of New Jersey, Colorado School of Mines, and University of California at Riverside and at Santa Barbara.  


Joseph Izraelevitz receives Commendation in UR's Outstanding Dissertation Award competition

May 9, 2018

Joseph Izraelevitz, who defended his Ph.D. in December 2017, has received commendation in the University's Outstanding Dissertation Award competition.  Joe’s research explores the impact of nonvolatile memory (NVM) devices, which are expected to replace DRAM in many applications over the coming decade.  Specifically, his dissertation, Concurrency Implications of Nonvolatile Byte-Addressable Memory, showed how to integrate persistence into existing models of concurrent programming, as a step toward faster databases for transaction processing, shorter checkpoints for high-performance computing, and a method for consistent computing on intermittently powered devices in the Internet of Things.  Since January, 2018, Joe has been a postdoctoral researcher at the IMDEA Software Institute in Madrid, Spain.


Ashely Tenesaca '20 Wins Davis Projects for Peace Grant

May 3, 2018

Undergraduate Computer Science major Ashely Tenesaca '20 won a competitive Daivs Projects for Peace Grant of $10,000. Along with Shingirai Dhoro '20, and Electrical and Computer Engineering student, Tenesaca will use the grant to create a water supply system in Zimbabwe for a project titled "Water for Peace: Solving Mukwerera Conflict through Provision of Sustainable Water Supply."


Professor Kautz named NSF Division Director for Division of Information and Intelligent Systems

April 24, 2018

Henry Kautz, the founding director of the Goergen Institute for Data Science at the University of Rochester, will direct the National Science Foundation (NSF) division that supports artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction, and data science.


Marty Guenther Retires After 25 Years of Service

March 9, 2018

The study of computer science has undergone sweeping change in the past couple of decades, right along with the technology itself. And Marty Guenther, who recently retired as the undergraduate coordinator in the computer science department, has been both witness to that and a key participant during her 25 years at the University.


Professor Liu named one of MIT Technology Review’s “35 Innovators Under 35 in China”

February 1, 2018

Assistant Professor Ji Liu has been named to MIT Technology Review's list of "35 Innovators Under 35 in China" for his contributions to the fields of machine learning, optimization, and reinforcement learning. He and his group proposed and investitaged a series of brand-new  parallel frameworks including asynchronization and decentralization technologies to overcome the computation and communication bottleneck of traditional centralized synchronous parallel algorithms. The asynchronization technology has been widely used in modern deep / machine learning tools such as Tensorflow, CNTK, MXnet, Pytorch, etc. His work bridges optimization and reinforcement learning, providing fundamental understanding for the complexity of solving reinforcement learning, and winning the Facebook best student paper award in UAI 2015.