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Outstanding CSE Students for 2006-2007

Maria Asencio — Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Computer Science

Maria Asencio Maria Asencio is a senior double majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics and plans to graduate this August. She has been involved in different organizations on campus. She is now the secretary of the SHPE- Elite organization. As a McNair scholar, she has participated in different research projects and conferences. She is actively involved in the development of a mathematical model for the prediction of the vegetation regeneration after fire and rainfall, a project led by Dr. Monticino in the Math Department. She has a strong interest and passion in mathematical modeling and computational science. After graduating, she will join the Cornell University for pursuing a MS/Ph.D. degree in Statistical Science. She is a CSEagle Ambassador for the Engineering Department where she has the opportunity to interact with other female prospect engineers. In her free time, Maria enjoys spending time with her family and friends watching CSI and Law & Order TV series. Her dreams are to travel the world, enjoy natural sceneries, and experience other cultures.


Danny Hall — Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Computer Engineering

Danny Hall Danny Hall says he has really enjoyed his time at UNT during the last 4 years. He has gotten to know a lot of the faculty and staff and he really appreciates their help in obtaining his goal. Danny will graduate this May with his B.S. in Computer Engineering and he has just received a job offer that will pay for his M.S. Danny belongs to several different organizations: IEEE, IEEE Computer Society, and Society of Women Engineering (SWE). He currently holds two officer positions as the Treasurer for both the IEEE Computer Society and the Council of Engineering Organizations, and has held other officer positions in the past. Danny has helped the Council of Engineering Organizations set up and execute the Career Fair. He also helped with the DC Best Competition, the Future City Competition, and the CSE department's RoboCamp during the last two summers.


Srikanth Palla — Outstanding Master's Student in Computer Science

Srikanth Palla
Srikanth Palla with CENG Dean, Dr. Oscar Garcia, on Honors Day 2007
Srikanth Palla comes from a sleepy town called Vizayanagaram in Southern India. During his stay at UNT, he worked as a Research Assistant with Dr. Ram Dantu in Network Security Laboratory (NSL) which is very active in researching network security. He published research papers in prestigious conferences and journals. Notably, in 2006, he went to MIT (MIT Spam Conference 2006) to present a paper on detecting phishing attacks in emails. In the same year, Srikanth and Dr. Dantu also presented another research paper, "Unwanted SMTP Paths and Relays" in IEEE 2nd International Conference on COMmunication System softWAre and MiddlewaRE (COMSWARE 2007) in Bangalore, India. Srikanth successfully defended his thesis titled "A Multi-Variate Analyses of SMTP Paths and Relays to Restrict Spam and Phishing Attacks in Emails" in October 2006 and graduated from the Computer Science Department. Currently, he is working as a VoIP test engineer in tekVizion Labs in Dallas. His hands-on experience with VOIP equipment in the Network Security Laboratory helped him ease into his job very quickly. When Srikanth is not busy with his research for anti-spam solutions, he loves reading, watching cricket, and spending time fishing and camping in the great outdoors.


Yanos Saravanos — Outstanding Master's Student in Computer Engineering

Yanos Saravanos Yanos Saravanos graduated with his B.S. in Computer Science in August of 2003. He continued his studies at UNT to pursue an M.S. in Computer Engineering, where he was given the opportunity to work on a wireless sensor network project with Dr. Robert Akl in the Wireless Sensor Lab (WiSL). He graduated with his M.S. in December of 2006. As a graduate student, he was also the president of the UNT Cycling Club and the treasurer of the IEEE Computing Society. Yanos has been working as a software consultant with Corning and will begin working at JPMorgan-Chase in July of 2007. He remains heavily involved with competitive road cycling and triathlons, and also enjoys his photography hobby.


Xiaobo Peng — Outstanding Outstanding Ph.D. Student in Computer Science

Xiaobo Peng Xiaobo Peng graduated in December 2006. He had worked as research assistant for Dr. Swigger and Dr. Brazile for many years. His last project is a web application with a MySQL database as the back-end for the Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) Program of US DHS. He worked with Dr. Swigger, Dr. Brazile, Scott Flowerday and Chad Johnston to develop the tool for evaluating emergency response plans of governmental and private organizations. Scott Flowerday, REP Program Manager, commented "The program he developed has resulted in significant cost savings to our program, reducing staff time spent in compiling our exercise reports and tracking results. While the database is complex in nature, it has been amazingly error-free." He personally feels that project is the best thing he has done in his life so far. He is very proud that he contributed much of his leisure time to such a project that he deemed very beneficial to the safety of our society. He is committed to work hard to make more contribution to our society. After graduation, he joined Become.com, a small comparison-shopping company at Mountain View, CA.