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CSCI faculty receive GAANN awards

Two computer science and engineering faculty, serving as PIs, recently received Department of Education Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) awards.

Associate Professor Farnoush Banaei-Kashani (PI), along with civil engineering professors Kevin Rens and Jimmy Kim, received an award for their project Infrastructure Informatics.

The federal government as well as the congress have recognized the importance of effective and scalable health monitoring, maintenance, and management for civil infrastructures as a matter of national interest with various socioeconomic and security implications. On the other hand, data science and modern data analytics (in particular, machine learning and deep learning) have been shown to offer breakthrough solutions in numerous areas such as precision medicine, bioinformatics, business intelligence, earth informatics, etc.

“With this GAANN project, we will establish a doctorate fellowship program on the topic of (Civil) Infrastructure Informatics, said Banaei-Kashani. “In this program, fellows will work with College of Engineering, Design and Computing faculty with expertise in both civil infrastructures and data science, as well as industry partners, to study and develop data-driven tools to enable preventive, predictive, and prescriptive maintenance and management of civil infrastructures at both collective and individual (precision) scales.”

Assistant Professor Haadi Jafarian (PI), along with computer science and engineering professor Doug Sicker, assistant professor Ashis Kumer Biswas, and Banaei-Kashani, received an award for their project Social Networks Cybersecurity Analytics.

With the ever-increasing presence of online social networks in our daily lives as a medium for communication and information exchange, they have turned into the new hotbed for conducting sophisticated social engineering attacks against citizens and organizations. Protecting our nation’s citizens and infrastructures against these threats has been identified as an urgent national need.

“With this GAANN project, we will establish a doctorate fellowship program on the topic of Social Networks Cybersecurity Analytics with the aim of enhancing national capability and capacity in addressing these threats,” said Jafarian.

In this program, doctoral fellows will work with College of Engineering, Design and Computing faculty with expertise in cybersecurity, machine/deep learning, and data analytics. They will also collaborate with faculty from other programs including information and social sciences, as well as industry partners, to expand the frontiers of descriptive, predictive, and prescriptive analytics for understanding the dynamics and structure of threats enabled or facilities by online social networks, and to develop methods and tools for their timely and high-resolution detection and characterization.

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At the CU Denver College of Engineering, Design and Computing, we focus on providing our students with a comprehensive engineering education at the undergraduate, graduate and professional level. Faculty conduct research that spans our five disciplines of civil, electrical and mechanical engineering, bioengineering, and computer science and engineering. The college collaborates with industry from around the state; our laboratories and research opportunities give students the hands-on experience they need to excel in the professional world.

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