UMBC highly ranked in production of IT degrees

2009 UMBC Commencement (photo: Jim Lord)

UMBC is highly ranked in the U.S. for its degree and certificate granting in the computing sciences. The University is fourth among U.S. research universities in the production of IT degrees and certificates, according to the most recent data from the Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics, which is available from National Science Foundation’s WebCASPAR site. The table below displays the top ten universities in terms of total production in the Carnegie classification categories RU/VH and RU/H.

Average yearly production in 2007 and 2008
Penn State
University of Southern California
Johns Hopkins University
New Jersey Institute Technology
Georgia Tech
University of California-Irvine

The most recent data from the Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics also shows that UMBC ranks second among U.S. research universities in undergraduate IT degrees awarded, and it is the largest producer among those universities of IT graduates in Maryland, DC and Virginia. According to the same data, UMBC is second in Maryland and 31st nationally in the number of PhDs granted in IT. The numbers are averaged from the two most recent years available — 2007 and 2008.

Yun Peng receives award from NIST for supply chain research

A supply chain is a system of organizations, people, technology, activities, information and resources involved in moving a product or service from supplier to customer.

Professor Yun Peng received a research award of $150,000 from the National Institute of Standards and Technology support work on "Integration Testing in Supply Chain Logistics" in the coming year. The research is focused on improving the systems that companies use to exchange and process information on services, products, orders and transportation. The objective is to reduce or eliminate problems that lead to late deliveries, inaccurate tracking, insufficient visibility, poor security, unreliable planning, and unnecessary disruptions in supply chains. The funds will be used to support research by UMBC students, postdocs and faculty in collaboration with NIST technical staff.

Leslie Valiant receives ACM Turing Award

The Association for Computing Machinery named Harvard's Leslie Valiant the winner of the 2010 ACM A.M. Turing Award for "his fundamental contributions to the development of computational learning theory and to the broader theory of computer science."

"Valiant brought together machine learning and computational complexity, leading to advances in artificial intelligence as well as computing practices such as natural language processing, handwriting recognition, and computer vision. He also launched several subfields of theoretical computer science, and developed models for parallel computing."

The Turing Award is considered to be the computing's “Nobel Prize" and carries a $250,000 prize.


UMBC Digitial Entertainment Conference, 10-5 Sat. April 30

Esca la Volpe is a game develped at UMBC for the 2011 GLobal Game Jam. Using simple sweeping motions and color mechanics, you must save the last celestial fox in the world from extinction, traversing obstacles to survive!

Hold the date! The UMBC Game Developers Club will hold the fifth annual Digital Entertainment Conference from 10am to 5pm on Saturday April 30 in the Engineering and Computer Science building's lecture hall five. The free event will include speakers from from Firaxis, Pure Bang, Dream Rock Studios and other game development companies who will share their knowledge and experience and comment on new trends in the industry. Watch the UMBC GDC site for the agenda and more information.

Startup City to stimulate urban entrepreneurship in Baltimore

Baltimore's Startup City

Baltimore entrepreneur and computer programmer Mike Subelsky wants to help strengthen the IT startup community in Baltimore and has created Startup City to give it jolt. The effort will fund up to ten groups that will receive free space, seed money and mentoring to develop their ideas during the summer of 2011.

The planning document describes what the program will offer the ten groups:

  • $15,000 in seed capital
  • Weekly master classes with experienced entrepreneurs
  • Regular access to mentors
  • Introductions to potential customers and follow-on investors
  • Free, beautiful office space collocated with the other participating companies
  • Legal, accounting, marketing, and technical assistance from Baltimore’s Emerging Technology Center
  • Vigorous coverage of their stories in our blog via video and written profiles
  • Exposure to investors, journalists, and business leaders at a Demo Day occurring at the end of the 12 weeks

See recent articles in in bmore and the Baltimore Sun.

"Applicants to Startup City, who will be selected based on a YouTube video they submit to the program's website, can be from anywhere in the world — though Baltimoreans are equally encouraged to apply. The final ten, chosen by consensus of all the mentors and investors involved in the program (after Beeman and Subelsky narrow down the initial pool) can be anyone from a single person with an idea to a formed team or company. Startup City is looking mainly for those who will be able to execute a successful project in twelve short weeks."

CSEE student Karuna Joshi receives IBM Ph.D. Fellowship

Karuna P. Joshi

CSEE Ph.D. student Karuna Joshi has received a IBM Ph.D. Fellowship award for the 2011-2012 academic year. Ms. Joshi's dissertation involves developing a new framework for automating the configuration, negotiation and procurement of services in a cloud computing environment using semantic web technologies. She is working with co-advisers Professors Yelena Yesha and Tim Finin.

The IBM Ph.D. Fellowship Awards Program is highly competitive and selects exceptional Ph.D. students who have an interest in solving problems important to IBM and their disciplines of study. The award provides a generous stipend and an education allowance covering tuition and other educational expenses and is renewable for up to three years.

UMBC Engineering Management & Systems Engineering graduate info session, 4/13

UMBC Engineering Management and Systems Engineering graduate info session, April 13

Learn about degree and certificate options, course overviews, admission processes and credit requirements at an information session for the UMBC Engineering Management and Systems Engineering graduate programs. The session will be held 12-1pm Wednesday April 13 in room 456 of the Information Technology and Engineering building. Ted Foster, Assistant Dean of the UMBC College of Engineering and IT and Graduate Program Director of both programs, will be there to answer questions. RSVP by sending email to professionals at

The Engineering Management Program at UMBC combines a practical business approach with an in-depth technical concentration and emphasizes how to manage people and complex projects. Courses are developed and taught by industry experts, and are designed to address real-world problems in the workplace. Both a Master’s Degree a Graduate Certificate program are offered.

The Systems Engineering program couples the experiences of the region’s top engineers with the expertise of UMBC’s world-class engineering faculty. This program designed in colloboration with some of the leading employers in this field balances practical application and theoretical understanding. Systems Engineering students experience a rich curriculum that covers all aspects of a system’s life cycle using state-of-the-art principles, practices, and technologies. Our Systems Engineering graduate programs are designed for working engineers, taught by the region’s top systems engineers from leading defense contractors and overseen by a board of faculty and industry leaders. Both a Master’s Degree a Graduate Certificate program are offered.

Classes in both Engineering Management and Systems Engineering are conveniently offered in the evening on the UMBC campus, located just five minutes from BWI Airport, with easy access from I-95 and the 695 Beltway.

See flyer.

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

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.

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