Kyla McMullen

Associate Professor of Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering, The University of FloridaKyla McMullen

Dr. Kyla McMullen is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer & Information Sciences & Engineering at the University of Florida. She received her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) as a Meyerhoff Scholar. She then pursued her Masters and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Michigan, where she made history as the first (and still only) African-American woman to obtain a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering.

Dr. McMullen’s research interests are focused on the perception, development, and applications of 3D audio technologies. Her work involves digitally filtering sounds to create a realistic virtual environment that enhances data sonification, assists people with visual impairments, and reduces cognitive load in multimodal systems. In recognition of her contributions, she received the prestigious National Science Foundation’s CAREER Award. She is also the Principal Investigator of an NSF S-STEM award designed to alleviate the financial burden of graduate school for Ph.D. students.

Apart from her academic work, Dr. McMullen is also a dedicated advocate for diversity and inclusion in the field of computing. She serves on the steering committee for the NSF’s Institute for African-American Mentoring in Computing Sciences (iAAMCS) and has chaired the National Society of Blacks in Computing conference, which brings together Black computing students, faculty, and industry professionals for networking, professional development, and career advancement. Dr. McMullen is also a co-host of the Modern Figures Podcast, supported by iAAMCS, The National Center for Women and Information Technology (NCWIT), and CRA-WP, which showcases the often-underrepresented stories of Black women in computing.