Welcome Back Computer Science Students!!!

The faculty and staff hope you had a great summer and welcome you back to the 2015-2016 academic year!  The following are tips to help with a smooth transition from summer to classes:

We hope these tips help you on a track to a successful year!  If you have any questions, feel free to email us at CSinfo@cofc.edu or call us at 843.953.6905.

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Girls Experience the Joys of STEM

The fourth annual Girls’ Day Out event featured two days of engaging activities. On the first day, one of the main STEM events was a computer programming workshop in which 70 middle school girls learned to program in Scratch.  In keeping with the Computer Science Department’s philosophy of small class sizes, the class was split into four sections and taught by students Tim Maruhn, Jessica Mack, Laura Stevens, and department chair, Dr. van Delden.

The experience was rewarding for everyone involved.  The Computer Science Department appreciates the opportunity which is aimed at attracting more young women into the field.  Jessica Mack, one of the student teachers, expressed her excitement by saying, “It was a very uplifting experience because I was able to give younger girls the introduction to programming that I wish I had before college.  Tim Maruhn added, “Just watching the girls get really into the project was gratifying; their fascination with it took me back to what made programming special for me when I first started out.”

Day two featured a technology expo in which over a dozen organizations presented interactive exhibits to the participants. Several School of Sciences and Mathematics departments sponsored exhibits, including a breathtaking Chemistry Magic Show by Travis Varner and other members of the Alpha Chi Sigma chemistry fraternity.  The day ended with a discussion panel of women scientists.  Jennifer Brennan, a College of Charleston alumnus with a degree in Geology, was one of the inspiring participants of the panel.

Girls Day Out 2015For additional information on the event, please refer to the article at: http://www.live5news.com/story/29631198/two-day-camp-preps-lowcountry-girls-for-stem-careers

 

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Medical Image Analysis and Machine Learning Summer Research

Department of Computer Science, College of Charleston

Mentor: Brent C. Munsell

Undergraduate Research Assistants: Andy Terto Gajadhar, Arthur Martins de Medeiros, and Jesse Da Costa Rocha

Brent M

From left to right: Brent Munsell, Andy Gajadhar, and Arthur Medeiros (not shown Jesse Rocha)

Research Topic:

Improvements in computational analyses of neuroimaging data now permit the assessment of whole brain maps of connectivity, commonly referred to as the brain connectome. The brain connectome provides unprecedented information about global and regional conformations of neuronal network architecture that is particularly relevant as it relates to neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and traumatic brain injury (TBI) that are believed to be directly associated with restructuring of complex neuronal networks. In general, two connectome categories exist: 1) a structural connectome reconstructed using white matter fiber tractography from diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data, and 2) a functional connectome reconstructed using resting-state time-series data from blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) functional MRI (fMRI) data. Recent epidemiological studies have also shown that TBI is a risk factor for the development of AD and/or PD later in life, and the accumulation of amyloid deposition is commonly found in the brains of AD, PD, and TBI patients.

To support this research effort Andy, Arthur, and Jesse help develop the following software applications:

  • A state-of-the art DTI image-processing pipeline that can reconstruct structural connectomes from diffusion weighted neuroimaging data
  • A state-of the art resting-state fMRI (rsfMRI) image-processing pipeline that can reconstruct functional connectomes from functional neuroimaging data.
  • Computational models that use connectome data to learn abnormal network alterations in brain network organization.

Collaborators: Jane Joseph, Department of Neurosciences, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC)

Publications:

D. Vanderweyen, B.C. Munsell, J.E. Mintzer, O. Mintzer, A. Gajadhar, X. Zhu, G. Wu, J, Joseph, “Identifying abnormal network alterations common to traumatic brain injury and Alzheimer’s disease patients using functional connectome data”, to appear in Springer LNCS proceedings, Machine Learning in Medical Imaging (MLMI) 2015 Workshop (http://mlmi2015.web.unc.edu/program/)

 

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“Omics” National Science Foundation (NSF) REU Site Program in Computational Genomics and Bioinformatics!!!

Are you interested in data-driven next-generation genomics, bioinformatics, or data science? The National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Site was awarded to the College of Charleston to support the training of 10 students in a 10-week program during the summers of 2015-2017. The 1st year of the Omics Experience has just completed and the students presented their original novel research at an interdisciplinary symposium. This high impact research experience trains students in programming, machine learning, data science, next-generation genomics, bioinformatics. It was designed to develop their critical thinking and problem-solving skills, understand the process of science, and to communicate their research results to peers and the public. The Omics Experience focuses on integrative research that spans the areas of genomics, bioinformatics, data mining, data science, molecular biology and evolution.REU Student Group Photo

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Meet the New Chair, Dr. Sebastian van Delden

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Sebastian van Delden has joined the College of Charleston community as the Chair of the Department of Computer Science!

Dr. van Delden received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Central Florida and was the Department Head of Computer Science and Industrial Technology at Southeastern Louisiana University.  At Southeastern, he managed six degree programs in the department, which had approximately 1,100 students and 30 faculty members.

Dr. Sebastian van Delden

Dr. Sebastian van Delden

Prior to SELU, Dr. van Delden was at the University of South Carolina Upstate for eight years where he was an Associate Professor of Computer Science and also the Director of Research. At USC Upstate, he received annual awards for Teaching, Research and Service to the University.  With a research interest in visual and voice guided industrial robotics, he has about 30 articles published in peer-reviewed, scholarly Journals or Conference Proceedings.

“I am so honored to join the Computer Science Department at the College of Charleston. We have a world-class faculty who have been very successful in winning research funding and enjoy working with students; friendly, helpful, very competent staff; graduates securing employment at premier technology firms like Google and Facebook; a variety of computing degree programs; growing enrollments and brand new state-of-the-art facilities;  and many high-tech companies moving to Charleston’s Silicon Harbor. What a time to study Computing at CofC!”

Originally from a small Dutch island in the Caribbean called Saba, Dr. van Delden is married to Elizabeth and has two beautiful daughters, Ava and Isabella.

 

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