A brick breezeway on the Homewood campus.

Computer science students and faculty who received departmental and school honors were recognized at the annual Computer Science Department Awards Ceremony on Thursday, April 25.

Initiated by Joel and Monia Dean with the objective of promoting excellence in undergraduate education, the annual Joel Dean Excellence in Teaching Awards recognize faculty and graduate students who have exhibited extraordinary performance in teaching undergraduates. This year, awards presented to Assistant Research Professor Alejandro Martin-Gomez for his exceptional success in developing a new augmented reality curriculum; PhD students Matthew Francis-Landau and Yihao Liu for their tremendous support as teaching assistants; and master’s student Kunal Kotkar for his excellent course management skills.

Undergraduates Ishmeal Lee and Camden Shultz each won a Neuhauser Family Undergraduate Teaching Award in Honor of Dr. S. Rao Kosaraju for their outstanding contributions as computer science teaching assistants. Associate Teaching Professor David Hovemeyer commended Lee for his “tremendously valuable” support and key contributions as a course assistant, while Bill and Lisa Stromberg Department Head Randal Burns praised Schultz for his “dedication and long-term commitment” to serving as a teaching assistant for all eight semesters of his undergraduate career.

Third-year undergraduate Muxi Lyu received the annual Michael J. Muuss Research Award, established in honor of the late 1979 Hopkins graduate of the same name. Lyu’s award recognizes her application of cybersecurity research to real-world practice.

Two Most Valuable Peer Awards were presented to second-year students Justin Bravo and Mohammed Siam for their contributions to the undergraduate CS community and overall departmental spirit—namely their passion for computer science and their enthusiasm in helping other students.

Nishikar Paruchuri and Ujvala Pradeep are the recipients of this year’s Special Service Awards, given to students who have performed outstanding work to benefit the Department of Computer Science, the university, and the community. “A staggeringly good student” who is finishing his bachelor’s degree in three years, Paruchuri still managed to find time to get involved with the JHU chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery, the Artificial Intelligence Society at Johns Hopkins, and HopHacks. Pradeep has served as officer and chair of Women in Computer Science, the official ACM-W chapter at Johns Hopkins; this award acknowledges her careful and inclusive shepherding of the chapter.

The 2024 CS+X Award was awarded to Tad Berkery for his longstanding contributions to the JHU Sports Analytics Research Group’s work over the past four years, culminating in a paper that was accepted to this year’s Sloan Analytics Sports Conference, the most prestigious and competitive sports analytics forum. Berkery has also been featured in an article by The Washington Post about his work on hockey analytics. After graduation, he plans to stay at Hopkins to pursue a master’s in computer science.

Finally, Outstanding Senior Awards were conferred to Julia Bian, William Tong, and Ziqing “Anney” Ye in acknowledgment of their academic excellence, leadership, and service; Bian’s involvement in the greater Hopkins community was described as a “tour de force,” while Tong and Ye were praised for their outstanding coursework and efforts at building community and connecting with peers.

Closing out the ceremony, Department Head Burns congratulated the awardees and graduating seniors, adding, “I want to thank all of you for your commitment to this community.”