CRA Bulletin

The CRA Bulletin frequently shares news, timely information about CRA initiatives, and items of interest to the general community.
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Expanding the PipelineExpanding the Pipeline

Expanding the Pipeline: The Computer Science Outreach Program Evaluation Network –  Increasing Quality and Capacity


The National Girls Collaborative Project (NGCP) brings together organizations throughout the United States that are committed to informing and encouraging girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, computer science, and mathematics. NGCP serves more than 35,000 programs in 41 states and uses a collective impact model that builds the capacity of educational programs.

New Computing Faculty Workshops in Summer 2018


The fourth (and last NSF-funded) New Computing Faculty Workshops will be held August 5-10, 2018 in San Diego. The goal of the workshops is to help new computing faculty to be better and more efficient teachers. By learning a little about teaching, we will help new faculty (a) make their teaching more efficient and effective and (b) make their teaching more enjoyable. We want students to learn more and teachers to have fun teaching them.

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Expanding the Pipeline: 2018 CRA-W Grad Cohort for Women Inspires Attendees to Persist in Computing


On April 13-14, more than 400 women graduate students in computing from more than 150 institutions converged on San Francisco, CA, for the 2018 CRA-W Graduate Cohort for Women (CRA-W Grad Cohort). Throughout the two-day workshop, professional connections were made, new friendships were formed, and mentoring relationships with senior researchers were established.

Robert BowdenRobert Bowden

CRA-E Selects 2018 Graduate Fellow


CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) has recently selected its 2018 CRA-E Graduate Fellow – Robert (“Rob”) Bowden.  Rob is a Ph.D. student in computer science at Harvard University. After earning his undergraduate degree at Harvard in 2013, he spent a year working as the course preceptor for Harvard’s CS50 course, and then returned to graduate school with Margo Seltzer as his adviser. Rob’s Ph.D. research includes work on file systems and code synthesis. His current work focuses on how to use the vast amount of CS50 solutions generated by students to not only detect errors in student programs but also propose ways to fix them. Rob’s goal is to advance automated program repair of buggy solutions to introductory programming assignments.

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2017 CRA Taulbee Survey: Another Year of Record Undergrad Enrollment; Doctoral Degree Production Steady While Master’s Production Rises Again


This article and the accompanying figures and tables present the results from the 47th annual CRA Taulbee Survey. The survey, conducted annually by the Computing Research Association, documents trends in student enrollment, degree production, employment of graduates, and faculty salaries in academic units in the United States and Canada that grant the Ph.D. in computer science (CS), computer engineering (CE), or information (I). Most of these academic units are departments, but some are colleges or schools of information or computing.

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Mary Fernández Receives 2018 Service to CRA Award


The Computing Research Association (CRA) is pleased to honor Mary Fernández with the 2018 Service to CRA Award for her work in transforming the visual identity and communications of the organization. Mary was a member of the CRA Board from 2009 to 2015, during which time she spearheaded several key initiatives to re-brand and revitalize communications.

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Jan Cuny Receives 2017 ACM Distinguished Service Award


Recently ACM announced that former CRA and CRA-W board member Jan Cuny has been named the recipient of the 2017 ACM Distinguished Service Award. She received the award for the establishment and tireless promotion of projects that have nationally transformed computer science education by increasing and diversifying access to high-quality CS education. From the announcement: When she joined […]

SAVE THE DATE: An NSF/CISE Workshop for Department Chairs at Snowbird


As you prepare to attend the biennial CRA Conference at Snowbird, we invite you to join an important event that is being organized by the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) on Monday, July 16, 2018, from 10:00am to 1:00pm, in Salt Lake City, UT (this event will take place just prior to the main conference, and just a short distance away from Snowbird). This three-hour workshop will be an opportunity for the CISE community – and as department chairs, you all are a key part of this community! – to gather regarding a new effort on Broadening Participation in Computing (BPC). This effort involves the NSF/CISE core research programs, as well as the Secure and Trustworthy Cyberspace and Cyber-Physical Systems programs. The effort therefore impacts nearly all faculty who submit proposals to NSF/CISE.

Articles Addressing Shortage of CS Professors Across Many Institutions


Two recent articles have addressed the shortage of Computer Science professors at many institutions.

Inside Higher Ed featured an article titled “System Crash” on CS student complaints that their departments can’t meet demand. The article highlights the CRA Generation CS Report, the National Academies study, and Craig Wills’ November 2017 CRN article on faculty search results. The article places the concerns of students at specific institutions within the national context. 

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Envisioning the Future of CERP


CRA’s Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline (CERP) recently underwent staffing changes when former Director Jane Stout left the CRA. Burçin Tamer, Ph.D., is now the Director of CERP and Heather Wright is the Associate Director. Under their leadership, CERP will extend its reach as a resource for the computing community through its Data Buddies Project, evaluation services, and other activities. Heather and Burçin are both excited to make contributions to the computing community and drive the broader mission of CRA to facilitate the development of strong, diverse talent in the field.

Should NSF CISE Implement a No-Deadlines Approach?


Our friends at the National Science Foundation (NSF) have asked for research community input on a proposed policy change to eliminate/reduce deadlines for core programs in the CISE Directorate. Given the increased pressures on securing federal funding and, in some cases, reduced capacity for grant management at computing research institutions, do you think the Computer & Information Science & Engineering (CISE) Directorate should follow the lead of the BIO and GEO directorates and consider eliminating or reducing deadlines for proposal submissions? What positive or negative impact could such a shift have on our community?

Expanding the Pipeline: CRA URMD Grad Cohort Fosters a Diverse and Inclusive Generation of Computing Researchers


Approximately 100 graduate students in computing and more than 20 speakers assembled on March 16-17 in San Diego, CA, to convene the inaugural CRA Graduate Cohort for Underrepresented Minorities and Persons with Disabilities (URMD Grad Cohort). It was the first gathering of its kind hosted by CRA. This new iteration of the Grad Cohort Workshop focused on the following underrepresented groups in computing: Alaska Native, Black/African American, Hispanic, Native American, Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander, and persons with disabilities. The workshop aimed to increase representation from these groups in computing research by building and mentoring nationwide communities through their graduate studies, and is modeled on the highly successful CRA-W Grad Cohort Workshop for Women.

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CRA and CERP Bid Farewell to Jane Stout


After serving for more than five years as CERP director, Jane Stout has left CRA to pursue a senior project director position for YOUGOV. During Jane’s tenure at CRA, she oversaw the Data Buddies Project; led CERP in evaluation work for the CRA-W, CCC, and CRA-E; and obtained an NSF grant to conduct computing education research focusing on diversity. Jane also gave numerous talks and interviews on the importance of diversity in computing and shared CERP’s research findings with the computing community.

While she will be missed by her colleagues at CRA, CERP, and the CRA-W community, we wish all the best for her as she embarks on this next stage of her career.

Expanding the Pipeline: CAHSI Broadens Hispanics’ Participation in Computing


The Computing Alliance for Hispanic-Serving Institutions (CAHSI) is a consortium of Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs) committed to consolidating the strengths, resources, and efforts of public, private, federal, state, and local organizations that share the core value of increasing the number of Hispanics who pursue and complete baccalaureate and advanced degrees in computing areas. CAHSI plays a critical role in evaluating, documenting, and disseminating effective practices that support students in computing disciplines at the critical junctures in the academic pipeline.

Undergrad Research HighlightsUndergrad Research Highlights

CRA-E Showcases Stories of Undergraduate Researchers on its Conquer Website


CRA-E’s new “Undergraduate Research Highlights” series showcases outstanding research done by undergraduate students at universities and colleges across North America. Each article features the story of a successful undergraduate researcher and offers personal insights into their experiences with finding an advisor, undertaking new research projects, and discovering how research can impact their personal and professional futures.

John Hennessy and David Patterson Receive 2017 Turing Award


ACM has named John L. Hennessy, former president of Stanford University, and David A. Patterson, professor emeritus of the University of California, Berkeley, recipients of the 2017 ACM A.M. Turing Award for pioneering a systematic, quantitative approach to the design and evaluation of computer architectures with enduring impact on the microprocessor industry. Patterson is a former CRA Board Chair and will be a plenary speaker at the 2018 CRA Conference at Snowbird, and Hennessy was the keynote speaker at the 2012 CRA Conference at Snowbird.

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2018 Board Election Results and New Appointed Board Members


CRA members have elected five new members to its board of directors: James Allan, Maria Ebling, Ayanna Howard, Ran Libeskind-Hadas, and Rachel Pottinger. Current board members Michael Franklin, Stephanie Forrest, Kathryn McKinley, Greg Morrisett, and Vivek Sarkar were re-elected to the CRA board. Their terms run from July 1, 2018 through June 30, 2021. CRA […]

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CRA Board Member Farnam Jahanian Named President of Carnegie Mellon University


CRA Board Member Farnam Jahanian has been named President of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU). From 2011 to 2014, Jahanian served as Assistant Director (AD) for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) at the National Science Foundation (NSF). In 2015, he was elected to the CRA Board of Directors and also received the CRA Distinguished Service Award. Jahanian is currently […]

2018 CRA Computing Leadership Summit


On Monday, February 26, in Arlington, VA, the CRA hosted its annual Computing Research Leadership Summit for the senior leadership of CRA member societies (Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, Association for Computing Machinery, CS-Can/Info-Can, IEEE Computer Society, Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, and USENIX Association) and the CSTB.

Juan E. Gilbert and Manuel Pérez Quiñones Receive the 2018 A. Nico Habermann Award


This year, the CRA Board of Directors selected two recipients of the 2018 A. Nico Habermann Award: Juan E. Gilbert from the University of Florida and Manuel A. Pérez Quiñones from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Both individuals are being recognized for their contributions aimed at increasing the number and success of members of underrepresented groups in the computing research community. Gilbert has had an incredible impact on diversifying the field of computer science, especially on increasing the number of African-American Ph.D. recipients and faculty members in all of the institutions in which he has worked. Pérez Quiñones has tirelessly and passionately worked throughout his career for diversity and inclusion in computing at all levels, spanning from high school to Ph.D., especially for Latino/as.

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Paul Messina Receives 2018 CRA Distinguished Service Award


Paul Messina was selected as the 2018 recipient of the CRA Distinguished Service Award for his significant contributions to the advancement of high performance computing and decades of service to the field. Messina has an incredible record of building and managing large-scale, diverse research activities. Over the course of his career, he has designed, directed, and otherwise executed numerous initiatives that have influenced U.S. policy and programs resulting in the U.S. leadership position in high-performance computing.

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2018 CRA Conference at Snowbird Program Update


The program for the 2018 CRA Conference at Snowbird has recently been updated. A third plenary session will consist of a panel on “Diversity in Computing Leadership” chaired by Carla Brodley. The confirmed participants include Shinder Dhillon, Head of Global Diversity & Inclusion – Engineering & Corporate Functions, Microsoft, Brian Reaves, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Dell, Inc., and Ayanna Howard, Chair, School of Interactive Computing at Georgia Tech.

Thank You, Data Buddies!


CRA wishes to thank the computing departments who distributed CERP’s Data Buddies survey during the fall of 2017. These departments’ collective effort provided vital data for CERP’s research and evaluation assessing students’ varied experiences in computing degree programs.

Which Departments Most Often Nominate Students for the CRA Outstanding Undergraduate Researchers Award?


In addition to honoring exceptionally successful students, these awards identify some of the departments that are particularly effective at cultivating and promoting undergraduate research. A total of 94 colleges and universities have nominated students during the last three years.