Tag Archives: DEI

diversity, equity & inclusion

Laptop loaner program brings Computing Sites to students

The pandemic has created new and unique challenges for students. To support a culture of caring and to create safe computing options, ITS developed a new laptop loaner program called “Sites @ Home.”  The program provides the best that ITS has to offer: Campus Computing Sites with access to specialized software, a Windows PC, and computers with higher… Read More »

Enabling fairer data clusters for machine learning

By | August 20, 2020

Research published recently by CSE investigators can make training machine learning (ML) models fairer and faster. With a tool called AlloX, Mosharaf Chowdhury and a team from Stony Brook University developed a new way to fairly schedule high volumes of ML jobs in data centers that make use of multiple different types of computing hardware, like CPUs, GPUs,… Read More »

In memoriam: Frances Allen, the first woman to receive the Turing Award and U-M alumna

By | August 7, 2020

Frances Allen (MA Math 1957), the first woman to win the Turing Award and first female IBM Fellow, died on August 4, 2020. Allen was known for her pioneering contributions to the theory and practice of optimizing compiler techniques that laid the foundation for modern optimizing compilers and automatic parallel execution. Allen intended to be a math teacher… Read More »

MiXR Studios Podcast: Anti-Black racism and the promise of virtual reality

By | July 13, 2020

This week’s MiXR Studios podcast continues a conversation with Dr. Courtney Cogburn from Columbia University and discusses her groundbreaking work in virtual reality with 1000 Cut Journey and how it is as important as ever in the midst of the current Black Lives Matters movement. In the “1000 Cut Journey” virtual reality experience, the user becomes Mike Sterling,… Read More »

Zoom Automatic Live Transcription now available

A Zoom beta feature is now available, providing automatic live transcription for meetings and webinars.  “Now more than ever, creating opportunities for the entire academic community to participate in discussions, presentations and lectures about today’s issues is vitally important,” said Ravi Pendse, vice president for information technology and chief information officer.  “We want to improve the ability for… Read More »

Police brutality in America: Teach-Out encourages learners to get informed, involved

By | July 9, 2020

As Black Lives Matter protests continue throughout the nation and deadly run-ins with police repeatedly make headlines, the University of Michigan explores the topic with a “Police Brutality in America Teach-Out.” Online now, the self-guided learning event on Coursera explores the history of policing in the United States and the legacy of mistrust between police and minority communities.… Read More »

Inclusive technology: How a single step could pave the way

By | June 30, 2020

In the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd and other recent incidents of police brutality, a coalition of Black computer scientists drafted an open letter calling for action in the computing community to address systemic and structural inequities Chad Jenkins, a roboticist and associate professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Michigan, is among… Read More »

Tandem wins teaching innovation prize

By | June 30, 2020

Tandem, a tool that helps track and facilitate group projects, has received the University of Michigan Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize. Tandem was developed by the Center for Academic Innovation and Michigan Engineering. Robin Fowler, a lecturer in the Department of Engineering, and one of the faculty leads who helped develop Tandem. She is talking about Tandem at the… Read More »

Why accessible material helps everyone

By | June 22, 2020

Accessible materials are a good basic practice precisely because they are often easier for all students to understand and process. Creating accessible materials helps all learners in your course and provides them with equal access to course materials and learning opportunities. Digital accessibility like consistent semantic markup and clean links makes it easier for everyone to navigate and… Read More »

How simple video editing can improve recorded lectures

By | June 19, 2020

Transitioning to online lecturing may seem daunting at first, but LSA Learning and Teaching Technology Consultants have shared some tricks and tips for making it easier.  According to the consultants, recording an hour-long lecture with slides to mimic a typical, in-person meeting reduces information retention and effectiveness of the instruction. Instead, lecturers should consider making shorter video lectures… Read More »

optiMize funds COVID-19 Community Aid Efforts

By | June 19, 2020

optiMize, a student-led incubator at the University of Michigan, launched a $25,000 Community Aid Relief Fund in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The relief fund aims to provide mutual aid and community-based projects in Washtenaw county. Students at U-M, Eastern Michigan University, and Washtenaw Community College were eligible to apply for up to $5,000 in funding. optiMize received… Read More »

Black computer scientists, including U-M professors, call to dismantle racism in the field

By | June 15, 2020

Signers of an open letter raise the alarm on interpersonal and institutional racism as well as racial bias occurring from improper development and use of computing technology. A coalition of black computer scientists has drafted an open letter to the computing community, calling for action to address systemic and structural inequities. They ask for equal partnership in the leadership… Read More »

Dillahunt receives Skip Ellis Early Career award

By | June 11, 2020

Tawanna Dillahunt, University of Michigan School of Information (UMSI) associate professor, was announced as an inaugural recipient of The Computing Research Association’s Committee on Widening Participation in Computing Research (CRA-WP) Skip Ellis Early Career Award.  The award is given to a person who identifies as a member of an underrepresented group in computing who has made significant contributions… Read More »

A virtual journey exploring Pride

By | June 1, 2020

Beginning in the U.S. in the late ’60s and early ’70s, Pride was a radical claiming of space, self-affirmation, and dignity for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) communities. Over the past several decades, this phenomenon has begun to have a meaningful impact on society on a global scale. More specifically, in North America, Pride goes beyond a… Read More »

Research on human biases in AI learning earns best student paper award

By | May 26, 2020

The project demonstrated that a certain bias in humans who train intelligent agents significantly reduced the effectiveness of the training. A team of researchers working to more effectively train autonomous agents earned the Pragnesh Jay Modi – Best Student Paper at the International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems (AAMAS 2020). Led by second-year Ph.D. student Divya… Read More »

Profiles in IT: Kara Thomas—Active listening advocate

MiWorkspace desktop support specialist associate, Kara Thomas, provides IT support at the Fleming Building to some of the highest-ranking officials at the university. She does it with aplomb and an eye toward mental health well-being. She is active with the ITS and Fleming Building DEI teams, and interested in overall health and general well being.  Tell us about… Read More »

Retooled computer science course goes all-COVID, all-online

By | April 22, 2020

A COVID-era redesign of a long-running computer science undergraduate course will put up to 120 U-M computer science and engineering students to work designing software to tackle problems related to the crisis during the 2020 spring/summer semester. Computer science and engineering lecturer David Chesney has run the class for years as an in-person offering called “Software for Accessibility.”… Read More »

Federal Court rules in favor of UMSI professor in discrimination research case

By | April 8, 2020

A federal court has cleared the way for academic researchers, computer scientists, and journalists to continue work that investigates online company practices for racial, gender or other discrimination. The ruling means that those who research online companies no longer have to fear prosecution for the work they do to hold tech companies accountable for their practices, said Christian Sandvig, professor… Read More »