Fall 2021
multicolored geometric shapes
The new academic year has started and our halls and sidewalks are once again bustling thoroughfares. The last 18 months have challenged us individually and as an academic institution, and I know the Fall semester brings its own set of challenges. While a lot is unknown about the academic year ahead, I have found President Pollack's remarks shared on the first day of classes, asking us to chart our course with knowledge and kindness, to be grounding and inspiring. I hope you can join me in this mission and remember to have patience, understanding, and compassion for our community and ourselvesas we navigate new territory.

Since celebrating with over 1,050 college graduates in May, the college has been busy conducting research, welcoming new community members, and planning for our growing future including planning for our new building. As you heard this summer, we are very excited to partner with Leers Weinzapfel Associates (LWA) to design the state-of-the-art building. LWA has a strong history of designing iconic, sustainable, and functional buildings, and I am confident in their ability to design a beautiful space that maximizes functionality and fits the unique needs of our growing community.

Whether you are returning to campus, have been here through the summer, or are new to Cornell and Ithaca, I hope you find the start of the academic year to be an exciting time. To students, faculty, and staff joining us for the first time: I am confident you will find Bowers CIS to be a rewarding place to work and study.

Thank you for your continued efforts toward our college mission and in keeping our community and families healthy. 

Kavita Bala
Dean, Cornell Ann S. Bowers College of Computing and Information Science 
Diversity is a foundational priority of Cornell Bowers CIS, and three summer offerings – CSMore, SoNIC, and the one-week Designing Technology for Social Impact Workshop – demonstrate that commitment.
Five faculty win NSF career awards
Rachit Agarwal, Austin Benson, Eshan Chattopadhyay, Chris De Sa, and Owolabi Legunsen have received a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award. 

These awardswith financial support spread across the next five yearssupport early-career faculty who have, according to the NSF, "the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization."
NSF Logo
Photo collage of new faculty
Cornell Bowers CIS is welcoming 13 new faculty members in the departments of Computer Science, Information Science, and Statistics and Data Science.

Collectively, their work ranges from developing robots that assist people with mobility limitations to using computational tools to study inequality and graphical models to solve real-world problems. 
David Williamson is the new chair of the Department of Information Science and Martin Wells is extending his term as chair of the Department of Statistics and Data Science. 

Williamson received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is well-known for his work on the topic of approximation algorithms.

Wells' research interests center on applied and theoretical statistics and sometimes cross the boundary into applied probability.
On August 19, Ingrid Jensen joined Cornell Bowers CIS as the college's inaugural Director of Student Services.

In this role, Jensen will provide college-level strategic leadership and management of the services and programs that support the needs, goals, and administrative requirements of the undergraduate educational mission. She will also expand the college’s engagement and advocacy in decision-making regarding undergraduate education at the university level and with our enrolling college partners. 
Thirty years ago, Paul Ginsparg – professor of information science and physics – created the preeminent open-access, pre-print repository, arXiv, and in so doing revolutionized how scientific communities disseminate research.

In a guest commentary published in Nature Reviews Physics, Ginsparg reflects on lessons learned from arXiv’s three decades of information sharing and how those lessons can inform solutions to problems like “freely flowing misinformation.”
Emma Pierson
Security, Privacy, Cryptography Best Paper Awards
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Ethan Cecchetti, Siqiu Yao, Haobin Ni, and Andrew Myers

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Fred Schneider and Leslie Lamport

International Association for Cryptologic Research (CRYPTO'21)

Rafael Pass and Yanyi Liu

Computational Linguistics Awards & Recognitions
Association for
Computational Linguistics (ACL)
Test-of-Time Award

Claire Cardie

North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (NAACL)
Best Paper

Sasha Rush

International Conference on Parsing Technologies (IWPT)
2021 Shared Task Winners

Tianze Shi and
Lillian Lee


“The piece highlights the importance of leveraging synergies across seemingly disparate fields, in particular ecology and materials science,” Gomes said. “This is so important for research but also to get students excited about what computing and AI can do to make the world a better place.”

  • Maxwell Beck '22, Cole DeMeulemeester ’22, and Connor Reinhold ’22 – all Computer Science students – named 2021 Kessler Fellows.

Article highlights research by Austin Benson and coauthored with Nate Veldt, former Postdoctoral Associate in the Center for Applied Mathematics at Cornell, and Jon Kleinberg,
“Cameras are dirt cheap compared to lidar,” says Kilian Weinberger, professor of computer science. “By doing this they can put this technology into all the cars they’re selling. If they sell 500,000 cars all of these cars are driving around collecting data for them.” 
What will education look like in 30 years? René Kizilcec talks with Learning Machine about the past, present, and future of educational technology.