This article is published in the January 2024 issue.

Establishing Partnerships with Industry at CRA-WP’s Career Mentoring Workshop 2023

By Helen V. Wright, Manager, CRA-I 

In November, CRA-Industry (CRA-I) had the honor of delivering a plenary talk at CRA-WP’s 2023 Early & Mid Career Mentoring Workshop in Chicago, IL. The speakers, CRA-I’s Co-Chair Vivek Sarkar (Georgia Tech) and Cynthia Bennett (Google), presented on “Establishing Partnerships with Industry at CRA-WP’s Career Mentoring” and sparked vibrant discussions with the audience.

The speakers underscored the immense value of informal interactions like coffee chats at conferences and workshops. Emphasizing the impact of organic conversations, Cynthia shared an inspiring academia-industry collaboration that originated from a casual chat and evolved into a joint publication. Such partnerships not only facilitate resource-sharing and funding but also encourage exploration of broader research questions.

The conversation delved into the significance of virtual mentoring sessions, particularly for first-generation students. Teaching students effective interaction with industry, these sessions create a bridge, providing students access to industry insights and vice versa. The potential for enhancing the computer science curriculum through industry collaborations was also highlighted.

While building trust among stakeholders demands time and commitment, the result is a collaborative culture that propels the computing research community forward. The discussion echoed a shared recognition within the community for more collaborations between academia and industry.

CRA-I and CRA stand ready to support and promote these collaborations. For suggestions or questions, reach out to Together, let’s advance the synergy between academia and industry in computing research.