Women in Technology: Spring into Leadership, 4/5

Women in Technology: Spring into Leadership

UMBC will hold the first annual Women in Technology: Spring into Leadership event from 6:30-8:00pm on Tuesday, April 5, 2011 in the University Ballroom. The program will focus on the importance of building relationships and developing one’s inner leader. Ms. Myra Norton, CEO of Community Analytics and a member of the College of Engineering and Information Technology’s Advisory Board, will be the featured speaker and facilitator.

The event is sponsored by the Center for Women and Information Technology, the CWIT Student Council, the UMBC Student Chapter of the Society of Women Engineers, and the Information Systems Council of Majors. All students are welcome and women undergraduate and graduate engineering and IT majors are especially encouraged to attend.

The event is free but space is limited and registration is required by March 30. For more information about the event, contact Dr. Susan Martin, CWIT Associate Director, at 410.455.3109 or susan at @umbc.edu.

Two cybersecurity companies join UMBC's BWTECH Research Park

BWTECH@UMBC Research and Technology Park

Telcordia and Ross Technologies will open offices in the bwtech@UMBC Research and Technology Park this spring with a focus on cybersecurity. Both companies will share space in the research park's newest building with Northrop Grumman’s Cync program, a new incubator that will nurture high-potential, early-stage companies as they develop tools to secure and protect the computer hardware, software and networks vital to national defense. The companies will join a growing cluster of businesses drawing on UMBC's resources and information technology expertise and the region’s strengths in security technology.

Telcordia, a global leader in communications software, will open an office to develop tools to support and protect vital communications networks. According to a UMBC News release:

“Telcordia has been heavily engaged with the cybersecurity community by ensuring and advancing the protection of critical infrastructure elements,” said Brent Greene, President, Advanced Technology Solutions, Telcordia. “bwtech with its cybersecurity focused programs and its local talent pool of highly qualified engineers, scientists and professors made our decision easy.”

Ross Technologies (RTGX) is a growing Maryland company that helps businesses and government agencies take a system-wide approach to securing computer systems. C-Volve, an cyber intelligence company focused cyber network defense and data breach security and risk mitigation that is being mentored by RTGX will also be based at bwtech. UMBC news release notes that

Armando Seay, who founded RTGX with Kathy Adams in 1997, said he is excited that the new location will put the company adjacent to the campus of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), and within a short drive of national intelligence and cybersecurity resources at Fort Meade. “We are thrilled to be moving our headquarters to bwtech,” Seay said. “This location will help us find fresh talent coming out of UMBC and further our goal of innovating in the field of cybersecurity.”

Learning to diagnose mental illnesses from fMRI data

A recent IEEE Spectrum article, Teaching Machines About Madness, mentions the research of CSEE alumnus Vince D. Calhoun (Ph.D. 2002) and his mentor Professor Tülay Adali on developing a machine-learning system that can distinguish between people with schizophrenia and those with bipolar disorder using multiple functional magnetic resonance imaging brain scans. These conditions can be difficult for doctors to distinguish and require different treatments.

Dr.Calhoun is currently Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Neurosciences, Psychiatry and Computer Science at the University of New Mexico. You can find our more about this and related research on the Web site of the Dr. Adali's Machine Learning for Signal Processing Laboratory.

ACM student chapter meets Wed 3/9 at Noon

UMBC's ACM student chapter will hold a meeting at Noon on Wednesday, March 9 in ITE201 to discuss chapter activities and hold elections for the chapter's executive committee.

ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is the the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society. It provides members with resources that advance computing both as a science and a profession. UMBC's chapter meetings are open to all undergraduate and graduate students of any major.

The main goal of the March meeting is to have a round-table discussion about where to take the chapter. It was created to bring students together to discuss interesting and relevant topics and share experiences. Come and share your opinions on the subjects that you would like to hear about in the coming semesters that will make the chapter exciting and relevant.

While you do not need to join ACM to be a part of the local chapter, the annual membership dues for students is only $19, heavily discounted from the non-student rate. See the ACM site for more information on student membership and its benefits.

The election will be held by ballot and the winner determined by plurality, i.e. the person with the most votes. According to the chapter bylaws, only members who are also members of the National ACM are eligible to vote, so bring some proof of your National ACM membership (membership card, print out of current information, etc.) if you want to vote.

If you have any questions, you can send them to the acmofficers at lists.umbc.edu.

CloudCamp Baltimore, 6-10pm Wed Mar 9, 2011

Cloud Camp Baltimore

There will be a free CloudCamp meeting in Baltimore from 6:000pm to 10:00pm Wednesday March 9th at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront. Cloudcamps are participants-driven unconferences where users of Cloud Computing technologies meet to network and share ideas, experiences, challenges and solutions. The event is free but participants are asked to register to ensure there is enough food and refreshments. Here is the current, tentative schedule:

6:00pm – Registration & Networking (food/drink)
6:30pm – Opening Introductions
6:45pm – Lightning Talks (5 minutes each)
7:30pm – Unpanel
8:00pm – Organize Unconference
8:15pm – Unconference Breakout Session Round 1
9:00pm – Unconference Breakout Session Round 2
9:45pm – Wrap-up
10:00pm – Find somewhere for post-event networking

Contact the organizers if you are interested in giving a five minute lightning talk or lead breakout session.

Spring Dissertation House for Ph.D. students. Apply by March 4

Students at the UMBC Dissertation House

UMBC will host a two day “Pre-Spring Break Dissertation House” on Friday, March 11 and Saturday, March 12, 2011. Breakfast, lunch, and a snack will be served daily. This Dissertation House session will be held in lieu of the annual Dissertation House and Community Building Retreats at Coolfont and Rocky Gap. The event will take place from 9:00am to 5:00pm in the UMBC Commons.

At Dissertation House, Ph.D. students from Maryland’s research campuses learn the skills of thesis-writing success. During the immersive twice-yearly four-day program, a group of about twenty graduate students share experiences, set transparent goals, and map out ways to get to the finish line of the doctoral dissertation.

Interested Ph.D. students should follow the application guidelines and apply by Friday, 4 March 4 2011. For more information see the Dissertation House Blog.

Computer Engineering Open House, 11:30-12:50 March 2, ITE 456

UMBC Computer Engineering open house meeting

Current and prospective undergraduate Computer Engineering majors are invited to an informal open house meeting from 11:30am to 12:50pm on Wednesday, March 2nd in ITE 456. CSEE chairman Gary Carter and CMPE faculty will present information on the undergraduate program and its tracks and courses as well as offer academic and career advice. There will be ample time for questions, feedback, comments and discussion. Lunch will be provided.

We are also recruiting current majors for a student advisory panel to review the CMPE program and courses. To volunteer for the panel, please attend the meeting or contact the CMPE undergraduate program director, Professor Curtis Menyuk (menyuk at umbc.edu).

Talk: Prediction markets for fun, feedback and the future, 10am Thr 3/17, ITE 456

Prediction Market for the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election (Iowa Electonic Markets, 2008)

Computer Science and Electrical Engineering
University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Prediction Markets for Fun, Feedback and the Future

Dr. Sanmay Das
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

10:00-11:00am Thursday 17 March 2011
room 456 ITE, UMBC

Prediction markets, when they work well, solve a fundamental problem: how to aggregate individual beliefs into a meaningful quantitative estimate of the probability that a given event will occur. They also provide incentives for people to disseminate privately-held information. I will describe one way to help these markets work better: incorporating a learning agent who provides liquidity, called a market maker. Along the way, the design of this agent raises and solves some fundamental problems in reinforcement learning and Bayesian reasoning. I will also discuss the deployment of this market-making agent in two different settings with human participants. One of these settings is a novel experiment for comparing market structures. Another one, the RPI Instructor Rating Market, allows students to trade on the ratings their professors will receive, thus providing dynamic feedback to instructors on the progress of their classes; we find that market prices are, in fact, better than past ratings at predicting future ratings.

Joint work with Aseem Brahma, Mithun Chakraborty, Allen Lavoie, Malik Magdon-Ismail, and Yonatan Naamad.

Sanmay Das is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He received his Ph.D (2006) and S.M. (2003) degrees from MIT, where he was a student of Tomaso Poggio and Andrew Lo. Prior to that, he received his A.B. in Computer Science from Harvard College (2001). His research focuses on learning in social and economic systems. He has received an NSF CAREER award, is co-author on a paper nominated for the AAMAS Best Student Paper award, and has served as program co-chair for AMMA and workshops chair for the ACM EC conference.

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Undergraduate research award applications due March 3

UMBC Undergraduate Research and Creative Achievement Day

The deadline for Undergraduate Research Award applications is Thursday, March 3. URAs provide up to $1,500 to undergraduate students to support their research or creative work with a UMBC faculty mentor on an original project. Students of all years and disciplines are invited to apply, as long as they will continue at UMBC long enough to complete the proposed work.

A student’s application requires a letter of support from the faculty mentor indicating knowledge of the student and his or her abilities as well as support of the project. The letter can further explain the importance of the work, the appropriate preparation of the student, and the feasibility of the work. The mentor’s commitment to working with the student must be included. For more information and to apply visit the URA page or contact Janet McGlynn (mcglynn at umbc.edu).

Related: Undergraduate research award applications due March 3

Intern and coop opportunities at NSA

The National Security Agency has an active internship and coop program in which many UMBC students take part.

Visit the National Security Agency to learn about intern and cooperative education positions, 9:15am – 3:00pm on Friday, March 11, 2011.

Challenge the unknown. Solve the impossible. And at NSA, it's about protecting the Nation. A career at NSA offers the opportunity to work with the best, shape the course of the world, and secure your own future. As a college undergrad, you can gain the experience you need while working toward your degree. And you'll get to experience first-hand what life at NSA is really like. Participate in this Shriver on the Road Visit to learn about the internship and co-op programs offered by the NSA.

The core mission of the NSA is to protect U.S. national security systems and to produce foreign signals intelligence information. NSA would like to invite students who meet the following requirements:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Must be eligible to be granted a security clearance
  • Must be a freshman or sophomore
  • Must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Must be majoring in Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or Math

The Agenda for the Visit will include the following:

  • Tour of the National Cryptologic Museum
  • Free Lunch (Pizza, Cookies, Soda, etc)
  • Internship and Cooperative Education Information Session
  • NSA Intern/Co-op Meet and Greet
  • Security Awareness Presentation
  • Q and A Session

To participate: RSVP via UMBCcworks under Events (workshops) and send your resume to Casey Miller at The Shriver Center at UMBC, email: cmille1 at umbc.edu

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