University of North Texas
CSE Alumni Email Newsletter

September 2010  

CSE News
Alumni News
Student News
College of Engineering News
UNT News

Greetings from the CSE Interim Chairman

Interim Chairman Ian Parberry

Dear CSE Alumni and Friends,

The Dean of the College of Engineering has appointed me interim chair for 2010-2011 so I will continue to serve the UNT Department of Computer Science and Engineering for a second year. A search committee for the new chair has been formed and a national search will begin soon. We welcome Dr. Song Fu, who joined our CSE Department as assistant professor this semester, and we congratulate Dr. Saraju Mohanty on his promotion to associate professor.

We are proud that our Robocamp received the Tech Titan Award of the Future from the Metroplex Technology Business Council. Congratulations to Robert Akl and David Keathly, co-directors of Robocamp, for creating this program and guiding it to success. CSE research labs have received several new grants and you can read about their news below.

We are proud of our CSE alumni and feature three of them in our Alumni Focus. I hope these alumni newsletters keep you informed about our CSE department. If there is a particular area that you are interested in and want to offer your expertise to our students, please contact us. We appreciate our alumni and look forward to your involvement with us. Thank you for your support of CSE and UNT.

Ian Parberry
Professor and Interim Chair

Department of Computer Science and
Engineering News

Robocamp wins Tech Titan Award

(L-R) Shown with the Tech Titan trophy are Ian Parberry,
interim chair; Robert Akl, Robocamp co-director; Costas Tsatsoulis,
dean of the College of Engineering; and David Keathly, Robocamp
(L-R) Shown with the Tech Titan trophy are Ian Parberry, interim chair; Robert Akl, Robocamp co-director; Costas Tsatsoulis, dean of the College of Engineering; and David Keathly, Robocamp co-director.

UNT's Department of Computer Science and Engineering won the Tech Titan of the Future-University Level Award for its Robocamp for Girls. Robert Akl and David Keathly, co-directors of Robocamp, received this award on Friday, August 27, 2010. The Tech Titan Award-University Level award recognizes higher education institutions that encourage students to choose engineering and technology-related disciplines. The Tech Titan Awards are presented by the Metroplex Technology Business Council, the largest technology trade non-profit organization in Texas.

Dr. Akl and Mr. Keathly created Robocamp back in 2005 because they noticed hardly any girls had participated in DC BEST (Denton County Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology). They did some research and found some troubling trends. Dr. Akl said, "Research and literature show that young kids lose interest in science and technology around 8th grade, especially girls." They decided to tackle these two issues simultaneously and launched UNT Robocamp for 7th through 12th grade girls.

The program has grown substantially since 2005. There were two camps the first year; four camps the second year, eight in the third year, and 13 camps in 2009. Mr. Keathly said, "Robocamp's survey conducted from the 2008 camp indicates that of the 20 girls who attended, 17 graduated from high school that year and 14 of those went on to major in STEM degrees, such as science, technology, engineering and math."

In the future, Dr. Akl and Mr. Keathly would like to see more girls in the College of Engineering. "I'd love to see more girls participate and bump up that number in engineering and computer science," Mr. Keathly said. "Girls are better in engineering in ways they haven't realized yet."

Congratulations to Dr. Akl and Mr. Keathly on this achievement!

Robocamp 2010 Wrap-up

Robocamp Logo

Robocamp 2010 was again a big success. We held a total of 10 camps which included 4 Robocamps, 3 XBox Camps and 3 mobile Robocamp Jumpstarts in Krum, Lake Dallas and Carrollton. We also participated in Grandparent's University this year offering "degrees" in Robotics and Computer animation. The Robocamp 2010 photos and the traditional Music Video for the year are available for viewing via a link on the main Robocamp web page at

Thanks to all the CSE staff and students who help us make Robocamp a success every year!

B.S. in Computer Science accredited

ABET Accreditation Logo

ABET has accredited the Department of Computer Science and Engineering's B.S. degree in Computer Science. Accreditation is a long process that the CSE faculty works hard to achieve. During 2008-2009, Dr. Robert Akl, Undergraduate Coordinator, and the Undergraduate Committee prepared a Self-Study of the B.S. in Computer Science degree program. ABET evaluators reviewed the Self-Study in Summer 2009 and visited the Department of Computer of Science and Engineering in Fall 2009 to meet with CSE students, faculty, the administration of the College of Engineering and at the University of North Texas.

A final report was received from ABET in August 2010 granting accreditation to the B.S. in Computer Science. This degree program has been accredited since 1986. Accreditation means that students, parents and prospective employers can rest assured that the program adheres to a set of well-established guidelines, evaluation and assessment procedures, and that the faculty, courses and support services are of the highest quality. It also means that accredited programs across the nation can be compared on a standardized basis.

Welcome Dr. Song Fu

Song Fu

We welcome Dr. Song Fu as an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of North Texas. He is the director of the Dependable Computing Systems Lab (DCS). Prior to coming to UNT, he was an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology from August 2008 to July 2010.

Dr. Fu earned the Ph.D. degree in Computer Engineering in 2008 from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. He received the M.S. and B.S. degrees in Computer Science from Nanjing University and Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 2002 and 1999, respectively. He worked as a System Engineer at the Nanjing Automation Research Institute in 2002.

Dr. Fu's research interest is primarily in distributed, parallel, and networked computer systems, including architecture, runtime support, operating systems, and algorithms. His research has been supported in part by funding from the National Science Foundation and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Dr. Fu is teaching CSCE 3730, Reconfigurable Logic, this Fall 2010 semester. Dr. Fu teaches graduate and undergraduate courses related to computer architecture, operating systems, and distributed and parallel computing. For more information about Dr. Fu, please go to his website at

Rada Mihalcea receives new NSF grant

Rada Mihalcea

Dr. Rada Mihalcea is the Principal Investigator on a new NSF grant for a three-year project on "Building a Large Multilingual Semantic Network for Text Processing Application." The project, totaling $500,000, is a collaboration with Ohio University, and it is devoted to building a large multilingual semantic network through the application of novel analysis techniques specifically targeted at the Wikipedia corpus.

The driving hypothesis of the project is that the structure of Wikipedia can be effectively used to create a highly structured graph of world knowledge in which nodes correspond to entities and concepts described in Wikipedia, while edges capture ontological relations such as hypernymy and meronymy. Special emphasis will be given to exploiting the multilingual information available in Wikipedia in order to improve the performance of each semantic analysis tool.

The proposed highly structured semantic network complements existing semantic resources and is expected to have a broad impact on a wide range of natural language processing applications in need of large scale world knowledge.

Dr. Mikler receives NIH Stimulus grant

Dr. Armin Mikler

Dr. Armin R. Mikler, associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, is the Principal Investigator of a $429,608 National Institutes of Health (NIH) Stimulus grant. Dr. Mikler and his Co-PI, Dr. Chetan Tiwari, Geography assistant professor, received the award for their project, A Computational Framework for Assessing the Feasibility of Bio-Emergency Response Plans, which will develop a response plan based on the establishment and placement of service clinics in a given region. The clinics serve as points of dispensing (PODs) in emergency scenarios.

The geographic distribution and placement of these clinics is a central query to their research, and multiple factors must be considered. Each region brings different strengths and challenges based on the availability of resources, such as service professionals (e.g., physicians, nurses and clerks) and infrastructure (roads and buildings). The team will use computational methods to combine and assess data from multiple sources — information that will help in the analysis of existing response plans and in determining optimal locations for the clinics. The team will also utilize existing collaborative relationships with public health experts throughout the planning process.

NIH is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The highly competitive Stimulus grants are federal funds given via the ARRA, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, for the purpose of "stimulating the US economy and empowering the nation's best scientists to discover new cures, advance technology, and solve some of our greatest health challenges." This year ARRA provided an unprecedented level of support to the NIH, with $8.2 billion given in extramural funding. The Center for Scientific Review typically reviews 16,000 applicants in competition for this money. This year there were forty thousand applicants! Out of this number, only 400 university researchers nationwide were accepted! It is an honor that Mikler, Tiwari and their team are among the recipients chosen for this prestigious award.

Dr. Armin R. Mikler is the Director of the Computational Epidemiology Research Lab, which is part of UNT's Center for Computational Epidemiology and Response Analysis (CeCERA). For more information, go to the CERL website.

NSF grant for Colonoscopy Research

Dr. JungHwan Oh

Dr. JungHwan Oh, assistant professor, is the Principal Investigator on a National Science Foundation grant awarded to Endometric, LLC. Total amount of the award is $500,000 of which UNT will get $152,776. The project titled "Real-Time Analysis and Feedback during Colonoscopy to improve Quality" will develop an assistive software tool for endoscopists to have real-time feedback of objective quality for colon and potential polyp region examinations.

Colonoscopy has contributed to a marked decline in colorectal cancer-related deaths. However, recent data suggest that there is a significant miss rate for the detection of even large polyps and cancers. This tool, which will provide video stream analysis and feedback during live colonoscopy, is made up of novel middleware software to ensure high performance execution of video analysis on an affordable workstation, and are generic, reconfigurable with new task allocation that support time-constraint video analysis.

The broader/commercial impact of this project will be higher quality of care for patients undergoing colonoscopy procedures with real time objective quality assessment, which is currently not feasible. Over 14 million colonoscopies are performed annually in the U.S.

This assistive tool will stimulate high quality inspection, while documentation is done. That will mean that endoscopists will be able to spend more time on performing the colonoscopy and less time on documentation.

Dr. Tarau awarded NSF grant

Dr. Paul Tarau

The National Science Foundation has awarded a grant of $97,500 to Dr. Paul Tarau, associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. His project, A Framework for Bijective Data Transformations, is about structuring equivalences between a relatively small number of universal data types used as basic building blocks in programming languages and a few well tested mathematical abstractions as bijective data type transformations connecting computational objects widely used by computer scientists and mathematicians, like sequences, sets, trees, logic circuits, and graphs.

An implementation of these transformations will be built in the form of an open source Data Transformation Library. It is also planned to make available the software in the form of a Java applet and a Mathematica notebook, having as broader impact various teaching applications and support for experimenting with data transformations in an intuitive, visual framework.

Dr. Tarau's recent work has showed that these bijections can be organized naturally as a finite groupoid with objects provided by the data types and morphisms provided by their transformations. The project plans to extend these encodings into a comprehensive data transformation framework providing a uniform view of the basic building blocks of various computational artifacts.

It also plans exploring the transfer between data types of inductive definitions of their fundamental operations, opening the possibility to derive interesting new algorithms. As a proof of concept, algorithms performing arbitrary size arithmetic computations using symbolic representations like trees or graphs will be obtained. In a broader sense, the project is likely to bring significant simplifications to the ontology shared by computer science and engineering fields, resulting in better communication and synergy between them.

Information Management and Knowledge Discovery Lab News

Dr. Yan Huang

IMKD Lab has received a new National Science Foundation grant. Dr. Yan Huang is the PI for the $450,562 project titled "AegisDB: Integrated Real-Time Geo-Stream Processing and Monitoring System: A Data-Type-Based Approach" for the period September 1, 2010 to August 31, 2013.

An IMKD paper won "Best Paper Runner Up" at the 11th International Conference on Mobile Data Management (MDM) which was held in May 2010 in Kansas City, Missouri. The paper titled "Low Cost Region Detection from Distributed Sensor Observations" was authored by Chengyang Zhang and Yan Huang.

Another IMKD paper titled "Privacy Preserving Group Nearest Neighbor Queries in Location-based Services using Cryptographic Techniques" has been accepted and will be presented at the IEEE Global Communications Conference (GLOBECOM). The paper was authored by Yan Huang and Roopa Vishwanathan. The conference will be held December 6-10, 2010 in Miami, Florida.

For more information on the Information Management and Knowledge Discovery Lab, please go to

News from the Language and Information Technologies Group

LtoR: Ravi Sinha, Chris Loza, Bharath Dandala, Carmen Banea,
Chris Williams, Tze-I Yang, Erwin Fernandez-Ordonez, Samer Hassan, Rada Mihalcea,
Michael Mohler, Paul Tarau, Ben Leong.
LtoR: Ravi Sinha, Chris Loza, Bharath Dandala, Carmen Banea, Chris Williams, Tze-I Yang, Erwin Fernandez-Ordonez, Samer Hassan, Rada Mihalcea, Michael Mohler, Paul Tarau, Ben Leong.

The Language and Information Technologies group stayed busy over the summer.

Carmen Banea's paper on "Multilingual Subjectivity: Are More Languages Better?" written together with Rada Mihalcea and Jan Wiebe (U. Pittsburgh), has appeared in the Proceedings of the International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING 2010). Carmen presented the paper in Beijing, China.

Ben Leong's paper on "Text Mining for Automatic Image Tagging," a joint work with Rada Mihalcea and Samer Hassan, has also been published in the Proceedings of COLING 2010. Ben attended the conference to present the paper in Beijing, China.

Rada Mihalcea attended the Conference of the Association for Computational Linguistics, held in Uppsala, Sweden. She presented a paper on "Cross-lingual Lexical Substitution," which describes an evaluation task co-organized together with Ravi Sinha and Diana McCarthy (Lexical Computing, UK).

Also noteworthy is a new grant from the National Endowment of Humanities (NEH), awarded to Andrew Torget (PI) from the Department of History and Rada Mihalcea. The grant is for a project on "Mapping Historical Texts: Combining Text-mining & Geo-visualization to Unlock the Research Potential of Historical Newspapers," targeting the development of search models combining text-mining and geospatial mapping to help scholars research collections of digitized historical newspapers. See this article for more information.


Ian Parberry at entrance to the new LARC lab

In August 2010, LARC moved to its fifth location in NTDP F204. The new space is larger and more visible on the main second floor hallway right outside the main office of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. To see how the move happened, see this slideshow. You can also check out what is happening there now at the live LARC Cam.

The first Game Programming Certificates were awarded to five students at the end of Spring 2010. Congratulations to Wyatt Lee Chastain, Bradley Evans, Adam Norris, Raven Watson and Russell Wright for earning the first Game Programming Certificates in our CSE Department.

In June 2010, LARC Technical Report LARC-2010-03 is "Emergent Economies for Role Playing Games," by Ph.D. student Jonathon Doran and Dr. Ian Parberry. LARC Technical Reports are preliminary versions of papers to be submitted or in review in refereed journals, conferences, and workshops. They are published online for fast dissemination and citation.

Jon Doran's first refereed journal publication appeared in the June 2010 issue of IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games. The paper, "Controlled Procedural Terrain Generation Using Software Agents," coauthored with Dr. Parberry, explores a controllable system that uses intelligent agents to generate terrain elevation height maps according to designer-defined constraints.

"Gaming for a Living" features CSE alumni in the Fall 2010 edition of The North Texan, a University of North Texas publication for alumni and friends. Chris Bream (2000), Art Griffith (2002), and Cesar Stastny (2004) talk about the importance of LARC. For other LARC alumni news, go to

Dr. Mohanty’s Nanoscale Energy-Efficient Research from NSDL Gets Recognition

Dr. Saraju Mohanty

Nanoscale Energy-Efficient circuits and system research at the NanoSystem Design Laboratory (NSDL, under the leadership of Dr. Saraju Mohanty has received significant recognition by being featured on the main website of the University of North Texas in July 2010. As a demonstration of international recognition, Dr. Mohanty was invited to present his research at University of Calgary in Canada during the summer.

Dr. Mohanty received multiple grants to support UNT's research, education, and student recruitment activities. One NSF (National Science Foundation) grant of $180,000 titled "Introduction of Nanoelectronics Courses in Undergraduate Computer Science and Computer Engineering Curricula" spanning over 2010-2013 supports nanoelectronics educational research. It will be used in the nanoelectronics education methodologies and curriculum. Eventually two new courses will be taught at UNT so that Texas prepares future professionals in this advanced area of nanoscience and nanoengineering.

In order to increase visibility of UNT in the international arena and to provide UNT a continuous platform for quality student recruitment, Dr. Mohanty has established a new symposium, International Symposium of Electronic system Design (ISED). The first of its series starts in Bhubaneswar in India. NSF has awarded a grant of $10,000 to support the symposium through invited speaker travel and students' participation fellowships.

NSDL members have published several papers recently. A paper titled "ULS: A Dual-Vth/High-κ Nano-CMOS Universal Level Shifter for System-Level Power Management" was published in the Special Issue on Design Techniques for Energy Harvesting of ACM Journal on Emerging Technologies in Computing Systems (JETC) in June 2010. A conference publication titled "A DOE-ILP Assisted Conjugate-Gradient Approach for Power and Stability Optimization in High-κ/Metal-Gate SRAM" was presented by Ph.D. candidate Garima Thakral at the 20th ACM/IEEE Great Lakes Symposium on VLSI (GLSVLSI). At the same symposium, Dr. Mohanty was also invited to chair a session.

Net-Centric IUCRC to meet in October

Net-Centric Logo

The Net-Centric Software and Systems Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (Net-Centric IUCRC) is pleased to announce the next IUCRC Industrial Advisory Board meeting that will be held on October 21, 2010. NSF program managers will be on hand to explain the concept of IUCRC. There will be short presentations on potential new projects and progress reports on currently funded projects. There will be opportunities to network with academic as well as current industrial members. IUCRC members will also have access to presentations of results on currently funded research projects. Faculty and students working on these projects will be on hand with project demos.

The October 21, 2010 IAB meeting will be held at Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine, TX. Please visit for more information about the center and the October meeting or contact Dr. Krishna Kavi at

Special Topics Class on Developing Apps

Android Logo

Professor Garlick's "Developing Apps for Mobile Devices" class has started this semester, and students recently presented their proposals for the apps they will create over the course of the semester. Some of the ideas included maps to find your way around campus with GPS-based bus route information, 2D and 3D games, finding free lunches on campus, and an app to make texting safer while driving. Students can create an app either for the iPhone or Google's Android operating system.

While busy programming, the class is also anticipating an upcoming guest lecture from the Technical Director of McKinney's NewToy, Inc, which developed the wildly popular "Words with Friends" game for the iPhone.

Hopefully by the end of the semester, UNT students will have some new contributions to Apple's App Store and the Android Market.

News for Alumni

Alumni Focus

The North Texan focused on three CSE alumni in the Fall 2010 issue. CSE alumni working in the gaming industry have helped CSE's Laboratory for Recreational Computing (LARC) gain national attention. In spring 2010, LARC was named by GamePro and The Princeton Review as one of the Top 50 programs in game programming in the U.S. and Canada.

Chris Bream
(Photo by Michael Clements)
Chris Bream (B.S. 2000) is the technical director of Terminal Reality, a game design and development company in Lewisville, TX. When he was growing up, he immersed himself in video games. By high school, Bream had designed his first video game levels. He says, "I made some levels for DOOM (a popular computer video-game in the early 90s). I really enjoyed it and wanted to see if I could make a career of it." He credits his success to UNT and the university's decision to establish the LARC in 1993.

In his position as technical director, Bream oversees the technology used to make video games. He says LARC was instrumental in preparing him for a job in the gaming industry. "It was sort of revolutionary at the time. UNT's computer gaming lab was one of the very first in the nation at a university. I felt very fortunate to be part of it, because today there are a lot of copycats."

Art Griffith
(Photo by Steven Meckler)
Art Griffith (B.S. 2002) is the lead game developer for Sony Online Entertainment in Tucson, AZ. Griffith chose to attend UNT for the game programming courses. "My time in LARC was invaluable," he says. After graduating from UNT, Griffith joined the one-man game development startup Octopi, where he helped design the video game Poxnora, an online collectable/tradable strategy game that also can be played as an app on Facebook. In January 2009, Sony bought Octopi. He says Poxnora has more than 2 million registered users and 10 million games played.

Griffith says, "UNT's computer science program gives you the foundation to learn the things you need to learn to make games, and it teaches the rigorous academics needed to write games. It's very intellectually challenging. Game development is one of the most difficult things you can do in computer science. There are very few fields where you get to deal with artificial intelligence, graphics and server technology at the same time. I find it both fun and fulfilling."

Cesar Stastny
(Photo by Renee Vernon)
Cesar Stastny (B.S. 2004), director of technology for Treyarch in California, had a fascination with computer games growing up. When he realized that he could make a living designing computer games, he said "Are you kidding me? Where do I sign up?" Stastny said LARC was pivotal in providing the high-tech skills and knowledge necessary to land his first job as a game programmer. "This was the ‘eureka' discovery for me during the first LARC course. I found out that, hey, I can really do this. I could do this for a living."

Stastny is responsible for the design, production and even some public relations for versions of Treyarch's popular Call of Duty games. He has been working on Call of Duty: Black Ops, due out on November 9, 2010.

To read the entire article about LARC and our CSE alumni, please go to "Gaming for a Living" by Adrienne Nettles. To see the entire list of CSE alumni in the game industry, please go to

We want to hear from you! What have you been doing since graduating from UNT?
Please send a few paragraphs and a picture to

Alumni invited to CENG tent for UNT Homecoming on October 16

Black Enginners
Having fun with the CENG car at Homecoming 2009

All CSE alumni are invited to visit the College of Engineering tent in the Mean Green Village on Saturday afternoon, October 16. The College of Engineering will participate in the Homecoming festivities to showcase the accomplishments of all CENG departments. The Department of Computer Science and Engineering will be a major participant.

For the 2010 Homecoming, the UNT Mean Green football team will host Florida International at 6:30 p.m. at Fouts Field. This is the last Homecoming game to be played at Fouts Field because UNT is building a new stadium that will open for the Fall 2011 football season. For additional information about the UNT Homecoming, please go to:

Alumni Mentoring and Support can significantly improve our Graduates


The Fall semester once again brings the opportunity for students to become involved in a variety of professional societies, special interest groups and honor societies. These organizations can benefit them in many ways, as our alumni are aware. But how can you assist our student organizations to contribute effectively at UNT? Here are a few suggestions:

1. Volunteer as a guest speaker or recommend someone at your company or in your network that would be interesting and educational. Perhaps you are a member of a society that has a speakers bureau!

2. Help organize a field trip to your company for something interesting.

3. Volunteer as a mentor to work with a small group of students to develop their leadership skills and invite them to the DFW area section meetings of the various societies if you are a member.

4. Donate funds or materials to help the organizations provide programming and host special events, or sponsor a scholarship to subsidize the membership fees for students. Many companies have matching funds available for scholarships.

5. Encourage your company to sponsor an event or other funding for these organizations in exchange for advertising and opportunities to recruit potential employees at career fairs and other events.

6. Sponsor a student to attend one of the Student Leadership conferences or a technical conference sponsored by a society. Be a part of our National Engineers Week activities.

7. Visit a student group meeting once a year so the students will begin to understand their importance and potential impact on their immediate and long term career success.

8. Encourage your company to offer internships at UNT so that our students can gain valuable work experience and improve their technical, communications and leadership skills.

Soon we will also have a number of honor societies, including Tau Beta Pi, Eta Kappa Nu, and Upsilon Pi Epsilon. These groups also need help from our alumni in a fashion similar to those listed above. Also if you are an honor society member, you can assist with induction ceremonies and other events.

We also currently have student chapters of the ACM, IEEE, IEEE Computer Society, SWE, as well as a Robotics Society, Information Security Group, a Linux Users group and a Competitive Programming Team associated with our department. UNT as a whole has many other organizations as well.

Please consider helping us create an active, supportive and vibrant collection of student professional and honor organizations. Contact David Keathly for more information on these organizations at

Join UNT Computer Science alumni on Facebook


If you haven't checked us out yet on Facebook, please become an alumni member HERE. Don Retzlaff maintains this page and posts department news there. So far there are only 84 members, but we hope you will become a member too!

Facebook has several other UNT Alumni pages, including the UNT Alumni Association. You can visit their page HERE. University of North Texas has its own Facebook page HERE.

Join the UNT Computer Science Alumni page on Facebook now!

Student News

Ph.D. Graduates

Jue Yang

Jue Yang, right, received his Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering at the UNT Spring graduation in May 2010. He is pictured with his co-major professor, Xinrong Li, assistant professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering. His major professor was Yan Huang, associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. He defended his dissertation "Design and Implementation of Large-Scale Wireless Sensor Networks for Environmental Monitoring Applications" in April 2010. Other committee members from the Department of Electrical Engineering were Miguel Acevedo, Shengli Fu and Kamesh Namuduri.

Huiqi Zhang with Provost

Huiqi Zhang, center, graduated in May 2010 with a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering. At graduation, Dr. Zhang is shown with UNT Provost Warren Burggren on his left and Dr. Ram Dantu, his major professor, on his right. Dr. Zhang defended his dissertation on April 15, 2010. The title of his dissertation was "Socioscope: Human Relationship and Behavior Analysis in Mobile Social Networks." In addition to Dr. Dantu, Dr. Philip Sweany from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Dr. Parthasarathy Guturu from the Department of Electrical Engineering, and Dr. Zuoming Wang from the Department of Communication Studies served on Dr. Zhang's dissertation committee.

Dissertation Defense

Tina Johnson

Tina Johnson successfully defended her dissertation "The Influence of Social Network Graph Structure on Disease Dynamics in a Simulated Environment" in July 2010. From left to right, are committee members, Dr. Suhasini Ramisetty-Mikler and Dr. Philip H. Sweany; Tina Johnson; major professor Dr. Armin R. Mikler; and committee members, Dr. Samuel F. Atkinson and Dr. Xiaohui Yuan.

Her dissertation explores the relationship between social structure and disease dynamics. Social structures are modeled as graphs, and outbreaks are simulated based on a well-recognized standard, the Susceptible-Infectious-Removed (SIR) paradigm. Two independent, but related, studies are presented. The first involves measuring the severity of outbreaks as social network parameters are altered. The second study investigates the efficacy of various vaccination policies based on social structure.

Tina plans to graduate in December 2010. She is an assistant professor in the Computer Science Department at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas.

College of Engineering News

MEE Department names New Department Chair

Dr. Yong X. Tao

Dr. Yong X. Tao is the new chair of the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering and PACCAR Professor of Engineering at the UNT College of Engineering. Dr. Tao is an internationally known researcher in fundamentals of thermal sciences, refrigeration system performance and renewable energy applications in buildings.

Prior to joining UNT, he was the Associate Dean of the College of Engineering and Computing at Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, and a Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. At FIU, he was Director of the Building Energy, Environment and Conservation Systems Lab (BEECS) and Multi-Phase Thermal Engineering Lab (MPTE).

"I am excited to welcome Dr. Yong X. Tao, an outstanding researcher, educator and administrator, as the new chair of the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering," said Dr. Costas Tsatsoulis, dean of the College of Engineering. "Dr. Tao brings a wealth of leadership experience and international recognition that will help the MEE Department continue to expand."

For more information, see this College of Engineering news release.

UNT Electrical Engineering Accredited

ABET Engineering Accreditation Commission

The College of Engineering is proud to announce that the Bachelor of Science Program in Electrical Engineering at the University of North Texas is now accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, 111 Market Place, Suite 1050, Baltimore, Maryland 21202-4012.

University of North Texas News

V. Lane Rawlins serving as UNT's president

V. Lane Rawlins

In April 2010, the University of North Texas System's Board of Regents appointed V. Lane Rawlins as president of University of North Texas for the 2010-2011 academic year. His appointment became effective in May 2010 and he will serve during the System's national search for a new president through the summer of 2011.

Prior coming to UNT, Dr. Rawlins served as president of Washington State University from 2000 to 2007. Following his retirement from the WSU presidency, Rawlins served from 2007 to 2009 as the interim director of the William D. Ruckelshaus Center for Conflict Resolution, a regional program of WSU and the University of Washington. Dr. Rawlins also served as president of the University of Memphis from 1991 to 2000.

The search for a new long-term UNT president was launched in April 2010 with the announcement of formation of a Presidential Search Advisory Committee comprising a broadly representative group of university stakeholders. The committee, with the assistance of an executive search firm, is expected to interview candidates during the fall of 2010 and make recommendations to the chancellor and Board of Regents prior to the Board's regular meeting in February 2011.

For more information about UNT's new president, please see this UNT press release.

Record number of graduate students at UNT;
enrollment soars over 36,000 students

UNT Logo

The University of North Texas fall 2010 graduate enrollment is at an all-time high of 7,794, which is a 6 percent increase in graduate students. Growth at the graduate level is particularly important to UNT's continued development as a major research university. UNT is committed to becoming a public research university and is growing its excellence in science, engineering and technology.

Total enrollment at UNT is 36,118 for fall 2010. This is an increase of 1,337 students or 3.8 percent as compared to last fall. This number includes a 7 percent increase in new freshmen. This year's freshmen class has an average SAT score of 1101. UNT continues to be a diverse university and this year will again reach out to meet the needs of more than 1,200 student veterans pursuing their degrees after serving their country.

To read more about UNT's enrollment, see this UNT press release.

The CSE Email Newsletter was assembled and produced by Genene Murphy and Don Retzlaff. It is a publication of the UNT Computer Science and Engineering Department. Contact the department at

If you would like to receive this newsletter as text rather than formatted in HTML, please contact Don Retzlaff at UNT Computer Science and Engineering Department — September 2010