Spring 2023 Awards Roundup

Wednesday, May 31, 2023 - by Compiled by Susie Cribbs

Our faculty and students routinely earn top honors for their research and teaching excellence. We celebrate their successes and value their contributions to furthering computer science and its related fields.
Our faculty and students routinely earn top honors for their research and teaching excellence. We celebrate their successes and value their contributions to furthering computer science and its related fields.

SCS faculty and students win awards, grants and recognition every day. Here's a look — neither exhaustive nor abbreviated — at who won what this semester. Keep an eye out at the end of the summer and during the fall semester for updates. Spot a glaring omission? Email the SCS News team with details.*

The Dean's Business Office also maintains a sortable archive of major faculty honors on the Faculty Awards website.

*Publication is not guaranteed and is subject to the discretion of the SCS News team.

 SCS in General

  • Lorrie Faith Cranor and Mark Stehlik have been elevated to University Professor, the highest distinction a CMU faculty member can receive. Stehlik also becomes the first teaching-track faculty member to earn this distinction.
  • Four Ph.D. students won a Best Paper Award from the Special Interest Group in Computer Science Education for their work, "CS-JEDI: Required DEI Education, by CS Ph.D. Students, for CS Ph.D. Students."
  • The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International has selected the Master of Science in Product Management degree for its Innovations That Inspire program. MSPM is a joint initiative between SCS and the Tepper School of Business.
  • This semester, eight SCS faculty members received NSF CAREER Awards totaling more than $4.5 million.
  • An SCS team won the PETs Prize Challenge for their work to preserve privacy during pandemic forecasting.
  • Four Ph.D. students with ties to SCS have been named 2023 Amazon Graduate Research Fellows.


  • Recent grad Prashanti Anderson received the 2023 SCS Alan J. Perlis Undergraduate Student Teaching Award.
  • Konwoo Kim, who graduated earlier this month, received the SCS Allen Newell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research for his paper, "Learning Shared Safety Constraints from Multitask Demonstrations."
  • Regent graduate Jeff Tan received the SCS Alumni Award for Undergraduate Excellence for his thesis, "Distilling Neural Fields for Real-Time Articulated Shape Reconstruction."
  • Rising senior Michelle Li was the first female finisher in IMC’s 10-day global trading competition, "Prosperity." She was part of a CMU team that finished third overall.
  • Rising senior Samuel Yu was a finalist for the Computing Research Association Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award. Recent grad Xiang Fan was an honorable mention.

Computational Biology Department

  • Jian Ma, the Ray and Stephanie Lane Professor of Computational Biology, has been elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Ma also received a Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Data Insights grant to develop explainable machine learning methods for single-cell regulatory genomics.

Computer Science Department

  • Professor Vincent Conitzer has taken the helm of the One Hundred Year Study on Artificial Intelligence (AI100) Standing Committee.
  • Priya Donti, who earned her Ph.D. last year, received the inaugural SIGEnergy Doctoral Dissertation Award for her thesis, “Bridging Deep Learning and Electric Power Systems."
  • Christos Faloutsos, the Fredkin Professor of Computer Science, was part of a team that received the IEEE Signal Processing Society Donald G. Fink Overview Paper Award for "Tensor Decomposition for Signal Processing and Machine Learning."
  • Assistant Professor Aayush Jain earned the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for his Ph.D. thesis at UCLA, "Indistinguishability Obfuscation From Well-Studied Assumptions."
  • Teaching professors David Kosbie and Mark Stehlik received CMU's Mark Gelfand Award for Educational Outreach for their work to found CMU CS Academy.
  • Associate Professor Bryan Parno received Golden Core Recognition from the IEEE Computer Society for his years of service to the organization.
  • Professor Tuomas Sandholm received the AAAI Award for Artificial Intelligence for the Benefit of Humanity for his contributions to the design and implementation of organ exchanges and their direct impact on practice and policy.
  • Rashmi Vinayak earned a 2023 Sloan Research Fellowship.

Human-Computer Interaction Institute

  • CMU presented Teaching Innovation Awards to Motahhare Eslami, an assistant professor in the HCII and Software and Societal Systems Department; and Geoff Kaufman, the Robert E. Kraut Associate Professor of Human-Computer Interaction.
  • Faculty member Chris Harrison earned the UIST Lasting Impact Award for his 2011 work on OmniTouch, a wearable system that turns everyday surfaces into an interactive screen.
  • Professor Jason Hong has been named as Association for Computing Machinery fellow.
  • Sara Kiesler, the Hillman Professor Emerita of Computer Science and Human-Computer Interaction, earned the HCII2023 Conference's HCI Medal for Societal Impact.
  • Professor Robert Kraut and his co-authors earned the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing's most recent Lasting Impact Award for their paper, "Patterns of Contact and Communication in Scientific Research Collaboration." 
  • Researchers John Stamper, Norman Bier and Steven Moore are part of a team that won first place in the XPRIZE Digital Learning Challenge.

Language Technologies Institute

  • Paul Liang, an LTI and MLD Ph.D. student, received the 2023 SCS Alan J. Perlis Graduate Student Teaching Award.
  • The LTI's ScottyBot simulated robot is one of five finalists in Amazon's Alexa Prize SimBot Challenge, which tasks teams with developing a bot that responds to commands and other inputs in a virtual world.
  • Professor Alex Waibel will receive the 2023 IEEE James L. Flanagan Speech and Audio Processing Award for his groundbreaking contributions to spoken language translation and supporting technologies.
  • Associate Professor Shinji Watanabe has been named a fellow of the International Speech Communication Association.
  • Professor Yiming Yang has been inducted into the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Information Retrieval (SIGIR) Academy.

Machine Learning Department

  • Assistant Professor Katerina Fragkiadaki earned the inaugural SCS JPMorgan Chase Career Development Professorship.
  • Master's student Maxwell Jones earned the 2023 SCS Mark Stehlik Introductory and Service Teaching Award.
  • Assistant Professor Yuanzhi Li earned a 2023 Sloan Research Fellowship.
  • Ph.D. student So Yeon (Tiffany) Min was named a 2023 Apple Scholar in AI/ML. 
  • Ph.D. students Kin Gutierrez Olivares and Cristian Challu received a grant from the International Institute of Forecasters for their project, "Transferability of Neural Forecast Methods."
  • Assistant Professor Andrej Risteski earned a Best Young Scientist award from the Republic of North Macedonia for his work in machine learning, statistics and computer science.
  • Professor Eric Xing received a 2022 Amazon Research Award for his project, "A Faster and More Accurate Secure Model Serving Framework on the Cloud." He was also named a fellow of both the ACM and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics.

Software and Societal Systems Department

Robotics Institute

  • Ph.D. student Charles Noren received a Department of Defense Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation Scholarship.
  • Howie Choset, the Kavcic-Moura Professor of Computer Science, has been named 2023 Inventor of the Year by the Pittsburgh Intellectual Property Law Association.

For more information, Contact:
Aaron Aupperlee | 412-268-9068 | aaupperlee@cmu.edu