The Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Heads Association
December 2019
DNNs are fascinating, despite their seeming conceptual bluntness. My own laboratory has been utterly transformed by them over the past few years, since they have been able to solve long-standing image processing problems. They have also become essential for competitive grantsmanship – our recently funded NIH R01 grant was enabled by DNNs. This is not entirely surprising, since my research involves the application of computer vision methods to biological images, and the resurgence of DNNs was driven by their success on classical computer vision problems. But, what about other ECE areas?

At this very special, and reflective, time of the year, we wish you a restful holiday season.  We look forward to our annual meetings. Bring the family along - the next Annual Meeting and ECExpo will be held march 18 – 21, 2020 at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld. 

ECE in the News
ECEDHA Southwest Regional Meeting Update

The regional meeting of SWECEDHA occurred November 8-9 at the Discovery Park campus of the University of North Texas (UNT), in Denton, Texas.
The meeting started on Friday, November 8, with the reception dinner held at the University Union of UNT.

On Saturday, November 9, Provost Jennifer Cowley called the meeting to order and made welcoming remarks. This was followed by introductions and short comments by the participating chairs. After that, the group focused on four major areas for discussion:
  1. Graduate enrollment trends in the region;
  2. ExCEllence in Senior Design, the SWECEDHA’s regional Senior Design Showcase, led by Dr. Larry Overzet (ECE Chair, University of Texas at Dallas);
  3. Workload Policies and related issues;
  4. Discussion of collaboration opportunities within the Southwest Region, including course swapping mechanisms, new joint funding opportunities, diversity career fairs, etc.

Summer Sun Gods Help Welcome Students to UC San Diego
For students admitted to UC San Diego’s Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Program, long summer breaks are the perfect time for basking in the sun and also for building robot Sun Gods.

As part of a new outreach program meant to welcome prospective students and highlight UC San Diego’s and the Jacob School of Engineering’s unique attributes, ECE staff sent 50 randomly selected accepted transfer students a “Project in a Box” care package that contained stickers from various student organizations and a kit for building and decorating a miniature robot version of UC San Diego’s iconic Sun God statue. Students who received the kit were also invited to share their robots on Instagram for a chance to win a $100 gift card. It was hoped that the surprise package would be a fun way to engage students during their summer break and also encourage them to accept UC San Diego’s offer of admission. With more than half of the transfer students who were sent packages not only completing and sharing their robot Sun Gods, but also officially enrolling at UC San Diego, the results were positive. 

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Conference Corner
Registration is now open for the 2020 ECEDHA Annual Conference and ECExpo, the largest gathering of ECE department heads, faculty members, lab professionals, communicators, students and leaders from industry.

Join us  March 18-22, 2020 at the  Renaissance SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida.

This year's program is hosted by: Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, University of Central Florida, University of Florida, and University of Miami.

The 2020 program committee has assembled a world-class educational program focusing on the most pressing issues facing academia and ECE today. This year's Conference and ECE xpo includes the following features:

  • A fantastic lineup of keynote and panel speakers from both academia and industry

  • Specialized workshops, including brand new workshops on Makerspaces, AI, and Quantum Computing

  • Sessions focusing on the future of ECE - including Next Generation Computing, Revolutionizing ECE Curricula, Flipped Classrooms, Robotics and Makerspaces

  • Ample networking time to connect with old friends and new acquaintances 

  • The ECExpo, with more than 40 industry leaders on hand to show the latest technologies in the field
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Andy Bell
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National Instruments