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CRA-E Selects New Graduate Student Fellow


CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) is pleased to welcome its new 2017 CRA-E Graduate Student Fellow – Booma Sowkarthiga Balasubramani. The Graduate Fellows Program was established in 2015 to give graduate students the opportunity to contribute to CRA-E projects, engage in advocacy for mentoring undergraduate students, and promote computer science research and undergraduate education at the national level.

Booma was selected from a pool of several talented applicants. She is a Ph.D. student in computer science at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Booma holds an M.S. in software systems from Birla Institute of Technology and Science, India. Before stepping into her Ph.D., she worked as a software engineering senior analyst at Accenture. Her research interests include data integration, semantic web, information retrieval and data mining.

Booma currently holds a research assistantship at UIC, as part of which she is collaborating with the City of Chicago’s Department of Innovation & Technology on a project related to business data integration. She also has been a teaching assistant at UIC for various undergraduate and graduate level courses at UIC and a dedicated mentor to several students (graduate and undergraduate) including to several women at the ADVIS lab in UIC. Apart from a couple of research internships, she worked with Girls Who Code as a Summer Immersion Program teacher last summer and taught CS courses to girls in high school level.

After UIC, she looks forward to working in a challenging environment that enables her to research and develop solutions for social good. Booma believes that CRA-E is the right platform to gain experience in enhancing the research experiences for undergraduates. She is very excited about working with CRA-E and has several ideas on improving and adding more resources to the Conquer site.

In 2016, CRA-E selected two Fellows, Keith Feldman (Notre Dame University) and Max Grossman (Rice University). Keith will join Booma and continue as a CRA-E Fellow for a second year, and Max will end his term. Max completed his Ph.D. this year and has launched into his post-grad plans by founding a small software company in Houston, TX called 7pod Technologies. 7pod focuses on offering dynamic and adaptive high-performance computing software for organizations running data- or compute-intensive workloads. CRA-E would like to thank Max for his efforts and ideas during his time as a CRA-E Fellow.