Brown CS News

Category – Diversity

Brown Students Place In The Top Two In Multiple Challenges At MIT iQuHACK 2024

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT’s) iQuHACK (Interdisciplinary Quantum Hackathon) is MIT’s annual quantum hackathon that aims to bring students from a diverse set of backgrounds and from high school through early-career professionals to explore improvements and applications of near-term quantum devices. The 2024 iteration of the hackathon was held in early February and offered both an in-person hackathon where participants developed and tested their code on real quantum hardware as well as a virtual hackathon for a larger outreach to further students. 

Brown CS Student Sabrina Chwalek Worked To Reduce Nuclear And Biological Threats In Her Recent Internship

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A member of the current Brown CS graduating class, Sabrina Chwalek participated in the Brown in Washington program last semester, which welcomes talented Brown undergraduate students who want to apply theory to practice in their concentration area to the District of Columbia. She interned at the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), a nonprofit, nonpartisan global security organization focused on reducing nuclear and biological threats imperiling humanity.

Brown CS Student Mattie Ji Is A Runner-Up For The Schafer Prize For Excellence In Mathematics By An Undergraduate Woman

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Almost twenty-five years ago, the Association for Women in Mathematics established the Alice T. Schafer Mathematics Prize, to be awarded to an undergraduate woman for excellence in mathematics. This year, Brown CS student Mattie Ji, a senior majoring in Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, and Computer Science, was the prize's runner-up.

George Konidaris Cofounds Lelapa AI To Develop Homegrown African AI

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Last month, Brown CS faculty member George Konidaris joined with five other artificial intelligence thought leaders in his home country of South Africa to found a commercial AI lab that may be the first of its kind: Lelapa AI. Lelapa's goal is to reverse the brain drain by enticing African AI researchers to return to the continent, and to use their talents to produce socially-grounded, Africa-centric AI for the benefit of the global south, which contains more than 85% of the world's population. Lelapa is built on three primary intentions: wisdom (in particular, Africa's niche skills in resource efficiency), family …

New Goals, New Paths: Continuing To Transform Our Introductory Course Sequences

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The latest cover story from Conduit, the Brown CS annual magazine, is our deepest dive yet into the inner workings of our courses and how they advance our mission of serving an increasing diversity of students who have a broader set of career and life goals. It documents a new introductory course pathway, CSCI 0111-0112, as well as a new course, CSCI 0200, where all four introductory courses come together. 

In the pages below, we situate the new sequence by giving brief histories of earlier ones, examine the phenomenon of introductory course tribalism, explain the motivation for this latest …

Apply Now, Undergrads In The Northeast: A Brown CS Program Aims To Improve Diversity In Systems Research

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"Computer systems are the backbone of modern applications," says Brown CS Professor Malte Schwarzkopf, "and the science of building efficient, easy-to-use, and trustworthy computer systems is about discovering key ideas that help make people get more out of their computers. Great ideas in systems have had stunning practical impact on the industry. But systems research, like much of CS research in general, suffers from a lack of diversity: only a handful of papers in the top systems conferences have non-male lead authors."

Apply Today: Researching Socially-Responsible AI With Students From HUGs

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At Brown CS and around the globe, interest in AI and related topics is soaring. CSCI 1470 Deep Learning, only a few years old, today has an enrollment of over 200 students. But as computer scientists hope to expand the field to historically underrepresented groups (HUGs), students from demographics that have born the brunt of algorithmic bias and deepfakes may be understandably hesitant to take part. exploreCSR: Socially-Responsible AI for Computational Creativity, a partnership between Brown CS and Google Research, aims to change that.

Apply Now: Ritchie And Colleagues Launch A Summer Program On AI For Computational Creativity For Students From HUGs

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"Research in this field," says Brown CS Professor Daniel Ritchie, "is poised to revolutionize the means of personal expression for everyone: in writing, photography, design, architecture, and more."

He's talking about creative applications of artificial intelligence (creative generative models, detecting "fake" generated designs, AI for game playing, and more), which will be the focus of a new, nine-week, fully-funded, Brown CS summer residential program. Sponsored by the National Science Foundation, "Artificial Intelligence for Computational Creativity" is an NSF Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Site aimed at students from historically underrepresented groups (HUGs) in computer science, bringing them to the …

Our Women Alums In The News

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When I joined Brown CS as a communications and outreach specialist eight years ago, most of what I initially encountered was reassuringly as I’d expected. Coffee consumption was as high or higher than I’d seen in the tech sector. One of the legends of the field was lecturing in shorts and a Hawaiian shirt. There was an entire mailing list devoted to a thriving board game culture. 

But one of the first emails I received was more of a surprise. Written by a Brown CS alum, it was less of a lament for the past and more of a critique …

Brown CS Student Sreshtaa Rajesh Wins A Cadence Women In Technology Scholarship

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Each year, Cadence, a computational software company focusing on tools for electronic design automation, awards its Women in Technology Scholarship to support and celebrate young women who are starting their careers. Recently, Brown CS student Sreshtaa Rajesh was declared one of the winners, earning a $5,000 stipend. "Your impressive academic achievements, professor recommendations, and drive to shape the future of technology set you apart from the many talented women we considered," writes Academic Network Program Manager Mallory Clemons of Cadence. "We are excited for what the future holds for you and the impact you will make in technology."