Monthly Archives: July 2012

Competitive Scholarships Awarded to Computer Science Graduate Students

Selected from a competitive pool of over 1000 applicants computer science graduate students Pratima Gorla and Swati Son have received scholarships to attend the 2012 Grace Hooper Celebration of Women in Computing being held October 3-6, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland. Pratima Gorla was awarded a Mastercard scholarship and Swati Soni was awarded a GE scholarship. The scholarships support their conference registration, a prepaid meal cart, hotel accommodations and travel expenses.

Swati Soni, a candidate for a MS in Computer Science, is a member of E-Save Group. Her thesis explores Smart Energy applications and is under the direction of Dr. Yugi Lee. She will present her work on “E-SAVE Framework: Saving Energy by Smart Services” at the celebration.

Pratima Gorla will present her work on “Heavy Gesture Based Emailing and Hop-Texting” at the celebration. A candidate for a MS in Computer Science, she is conducting research on “Exertional Interface Framework For Working Out While Working (WOW)”under the direction of Dr. Deendayal Dinakarpandian and Dr. Yugi Lee.

Dr. Chen presents at two NSF sponsored conferences

Dr. ZhiQiang Chen obtained two travel grants to attend the 1st USUCGER Early Career Conference and the 14th GENI Engineering Conference from July 8~ July 11, both at Boston and sponsored by National Science Foundation. Dr. Chen presented his research methods and findings in identifying soil-structure-interaction effects using geotechnical centrifuge data during the USUCGER conference. While attending the GENI conference, Dr. Chen explored the potential with other leading researchers for the next-generation GENI-based disaster response with the conjunct use of remote sensing, real-time computing and muti-physics modeling.

About USUCGER: The United States Universities Council on Geotechnical Education and Research (USUCGER) was founded in 1985 to provide advocacy for the continued development and expansion of high quality geotechnical engineering research and education by US academic institutions

About GENI: GENI is a virtual laboratory at the frontiers of network science and engineering for exploring future internets at scale, and is also the backbone of the recently announced national initiative ‘US Ignite’.

Amber Rath Stern and Ganesh Thiagarajan on NIH funded research team

SCE’s Dr. Amber Rath Stern and Dr. Ganesh Thiagarajan are part of a UMKC research team just awarded a National Health Institute (NIH) $8.3 million grant to study ‘crosstalk’ between bones and muscles. According to the U Matters article, “In collaboration with Dr. Bonewald, other members of the research team includes Mark Johnson, Ph.D., and Sarah Dallas, Ph.D., members of the Bone Biology research group at the School of Dentistry; and Marco Brotto, Ph.D., director of the Muscle Biology research program housed at the School of Nursing. At the UMKC School of Computing and Engineering, investigators Ganesh Thiagarajan, Ph.D., and Amber Rath-Stern, Ph.D., will work with the clinical researchers to develop computer models for measuring, among other things, the impact of muscle loading on bones. William Guthiel, Ph.D., from the UMKC School of Pharmacy will work with Dr. Bonewald to identify these muscle and bone signaling factors. The ultimate goal of this research is to determine the molecular and cellular mechanisms that contribute to the coordinated development of bone and muscle conditions in the elderly. Current treatments for osteoporosis are aimed at controlling the activity of special cells in bone which are responsible for bone formation and bone removal, called osteoblasts and osteoclasts, respectively. “

ASM Materials Camp for Teachers at SCE this summer

The ASM Materials Camp for Teachers was held at UMKC SCE the week of June 11 – June 15. Seven states were represented by the 23 high school and middle school science teachers participating in the camp. This free annual camp has been held at UMKC annually for the past 5 years and SCE faculty have assisted with the camp’s programming over the years. The purpose of the camp is to provide STEM teachers one week of professional training on low-cost and exciting experiments they can use to illustrate STEM concepts to their students. School districts in the Kansas City area with teachers in attendance this year were Blue Valley, KCKS, KCMO, Lee’s Summit, North KC, Olathe, and Park Hill. This year’s camp was taught by two ASM master teachers, Gissel McDonald, a high school chemistry teacher from Spring Hill KS school district, and Beth Eddy, a high school chemistry teacher from Westerville South High School in Columbus OH. SCE Teaching Professor Bob Hanlin, P.E. and Assistant Professor John Kevern were instrumental in organizing the 2012 camp and helping with its programming, providing the teachers several hands-on laboratory experiences.


SAME Student Chapter working with GKC SAME Post

The UMKC Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) student chapter and its president, Samantha Baker, is working to “better integrate the student chapter with the GKC Post so that students have more interaction with and access to practicing engineers who can help them with internships and job preparation”. For details, scroll down through the Greater Kansas City Post SAME June 2012 newsletter to see the article, UMKC Student Chapter Gearing Up for 2012-2013 School Year, written by Neeli Langdon.

ASCE Student Chapter Receives National Award!

The UMKC American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) student chapter received a Letter of Honorable Mention from ASCE national headquarters for “its outstanding activities as recorded in the 2011 Chapter Annual Report”. Activities by the chapter’s 50 or so members included professional development activities to improve internship prospects, volunteer activities such as Wyandotte county trail restoration, toys for tots, highway cleanup, and helping with a charity golf tournament, participating in the steel bridge competition at K-State, 5 meetings which highlighted the various areas of civil engineering, and Joint meetings with the professional Kansas City ASCE chapter, student American Public Works Association (APWA) chapter, and professional chapter of the local American Welding Society (AWS) chapter. SCE congratulates all our ASCE members, its President Kyle Dunning and the ASCE student chapter faculty advisors, John Kevern and Jerry Richardson.