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Careers in Computer Science Opportunities at UAB


Jimmy Wales. Wikipedia Founder. Huntsville Native ... 1,080,000 from National Science Foundation. In collaboration with Birmingham City Schools ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Careers in Computer Science Opportunities at UAB

Careers in Computer Science - Opportunities at
  • Jeff Gray, Ph.D. - Associate Professor
  • Alabama Professor of the Year
  • UAB CIS Department
  • http//

The Benefits of a Diverse Education
  • You dont need to be a Pulitzer Prize winning
    novelist to appreciate an English class

Software is Everywhere
  • Think of some of the things that entertain and
    enrich your daily life
  • All of the above are driven by software
  • Software developers equipped with a computer
    science degree have opportunities to work on
    exciting and cutting-edge projects

Software is Everywhere
  • 98 of all microprocessors control devices other
    than desktop computers
  • Automobiles, airplanes, televisions, copiers,
  • These devices also need software and often
    require strong technical skills to develop

Meteoric Opportunities
Alabama Technology Leaders
Jimmy Wales Wikipedia Founder Huntsville Native
  • The biggest multilingual free-content
    encyclopedia on the Internet.
  • Since its creation in 2001, nearly 10 million
    articles in over 250 languages.
  • Over 680 million visitors each year 75,000
    active contributors.

Intellectual Opportunities
  • the software industry is going to make more
    breakthroughs in these next 10 years than it's
    made in the last 30 software is really going to
    transform not just what we think about as the
    computer industry, but the way that everything is

Quantum computing
Transforming all fields of science and engineering
Re-architecting the Internet
Prosthetics / augmentation / access
Harnessing parallelism
Transforming the nations defense
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • Offshore hysteria Many companies with high
    paying jobs within the US are unable to fill
    positions with computer scientists.

Source http//
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • Computer Science occupations are projected to
    grow twice as fast as the average for all
  • Between 2006-2016 a projected 822,000 new jobs
    will be available in Computer Science occupation
    areas in the United States alone.

Source http//
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • Among the fastest growing occupations, software
    engineers had the highest median annual salary -

Source http//
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • Computer science has the highest engineering
    salary and the fastest growing salary increase.

Source IEEE Spectrum, August 2008
Communications of the ACM, July 2008, pg. 32.
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics,
    5 of the top-10 growing jobs have a computer
    science focus.
  • (Reprinted with Permission from onInvesting)

The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • National Job Outlook
  • 61,407 is the average starting salary for
    computer science degrees in the class of 2009
    (among top 3 highest starting salaries) 9.7
    increase over 2007 offers
  • 1000s of openings each at Microsoft Game Studios,
    Electronic Arts, Epic Games, Google
  • Epic Games President We do not hire anyone
    under 100k

(No Transcript)
The Demand for Computer Scientists
  • Local Job Outlook
  • In Birmingham, there was a recent need for 200
    Java programmers exceeded universitys ability
    to deliver employees
  • CTS hiring several new developers each month
  • Summary of recent openings in Birmingham
  • JAVA/J2EE/EJB (60/hr), Peoplesoft (95/hr), SAP
    Technical (85/hr), SAP Functional (95/hr),
    Corba (55/hr), Oracle DBA (70/hr), DB2 DBA
    (70/hr), Sybase DBA (75/hr), .Net,,C,asp.
    net (60/hr), C/C (55/hr), Cobol (55/hr)

The Potential for Alabama
  • Per capita, Huntsville is one of the top five
    cities in the US with concentration of software
    developers, and 1 in terms of total engineers.
  • Cummings Research Park is the second largest in
    the United States and the fourth largest in the

Myth of Computer Science
  • According to the Alabama Learning Exchange
    (ALEX)1, computing is equated to learning
    Microsoft Word and various mechanical tasks this
    is not Computer Science!

1 http//
Computer Science in Alabama
  • Number of schools passing AP CS audit

Georgias Success Story
  • Number of students taking AP CS exams

High School Outreach at UAB CIS
Mentoring for Science Fair Competitions
Summer Camps
  • Weekly mentoring at UAB throughout academic
    year students treated like a PhD student with
    office space
  • 6 weeks High School 1 weeks Middle School
  • Tuition Scholarships Available
  • Taught by UAB Faculty
  • Topics include Java, robotics, graphics, game
    programming, scientific computing
  • In 2009, over 65 students attended
Programming Contest and Alice Festival
  • May 2010
  • Over 150 students and parents from across Alabama
  • Prizes Laptop, Xbox, software, books, gift
  • Alice Film Festival!
Drawing the GENIEous out of the kid emPowering
the next generation for information technology
  • 1,080,000 from National Science Foundation
  • In collaboration with Birmingham City Schools
  • UAB CORD, Computer Science, Mathematics,
    Education, and Mechanical Engineering
  • Three-year engagement of 60 students per year
  • 10th grade Game Programming with Alice Linear
  • 11th grade Java and Robotics Advanced
  • 12th grade Computer Visualization Science fair
  • Teachers Training of BCS teachers in parallel
    with student camps
  • Seeking students and teachers for Fall08/Summer09

Field Trips to the CIS Department
  • The UAB CIS Department offers outreach
    opportunities to local high schools through
    hosted field trips. The 3-hour field trip
    provides students with a broad range of exposure
    to computer science concepts, such as
  • Career Opportunities in Computer Science
  • Computer Chess
  • Introduction to Game Programming with Alice
  • Tour of UAB CIS (including "Fastest Computer in
    Alabama" and visualization wall)
  • Pizza lunch featuring demonstrations of Lego NXT

Guest Lectures for Technology Clubs
  • An Introduction to Alice at Gardendale High
  • The Technology Club at Gardendale High School,
    which is sponsored by faculty member Juanita
    Vann, has invited Dr. Jeff Gray to conduct a
    series of talks to the club members. The club
    will meet twice a month throughout the school
    year to learn how to program in Alice. The
    Technology Club members will create projects in
    Alice that will be submitted to the Alice Film
    Festival, which will be held at the UAB High
    School Programming Contest on May 12, 2007.

Alabama K-12 Computer Workshop
  • July 31, 2006 16 state-wide participants
  • Purpose To discuss critical issues needed to
    raise awareness of computing within Alabama
  • Participants
  • Public Bob Jones High School, Vestavia Hills
  • Magnets ASFA (Birmingham), ASMS (Mobile)
  • Private Tuscaloosa Academy
  • K-5 Cameron McKinley (AL Teacher of Year)

CS 201
  • CS 201 is our introductory programming course in
  • Greatly speed up mentoring experience in Fall
  • Prepare students for programming contest next May
  • Concurrent/Dual enrollment agreement
  • Requirements 3.0 GPA and 25-ACT (1140-SAT)
  • Receive 4 college credit hours over summer for CS
  • Approximate tuition 700
  • However - A deal to consider
  • We will pay for 1/3 tuition for this course
    upfront for those who qualify for Concurrent
  • If you later commit to UAB CIS, we will reimburse
    the full amount
  • Those not qualifying for Concurrent enrollment
    may still sit in on the course, but without
    receiving credit hours

Possible Mentoring Ideas
  • LEGO NXT is a great experimental platform
  • Exciting new capabilities include wireless
    communication and vision
  • At UAB, we have 15 of these robots for
    experimentation purposes

Possible Mentoring Ideas
  • Self-Parking Robot
  • Simulates a car that identifies open spaces and
    parallel parks
  • Target Recognition in a Rescue Mission
  • A group of coordinated robots will work together
    to conduct a search/rescue mission
  • Sniper Identification
  • A group of autonomous robots will be used to
    isolate the location of sniper fire in a military
    application (using triangulation)
  • Speech and Vision Recognition
  • Voice controlled commands to a robot that also
    can use the vision camera to avoid colliding with
  • Game Playing Robot
  • Tic-tac-toe Othello
  • 2-on-2 soccer
  • Of course, we encourage creativity if you have
    new ideas!

Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Scholarship Availability
  • For outstanding high school students, UAB offers
    several scholarships to incoming freshmen (from
    2000-8000 per year)
  • The CIS Department offers the Joseph Fontana
    Scholarship each year to two CIS students
    (typically awarded to Junior and Senior
    students). This scholarship provides 4,000 over
    the academic year.
  • The recently established Joyce Iannuzzi
    fellowship provides 2,000 to a CIS undergraduate
    each year.
  • The new S-STEM scholarship is designed to
    increase retention and graduation rates of CIS
    majors. This award provides up to 10,000 per
    year for a two year maximum to help students with
    unmet financial need.

Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Outstanding Faculty
  • The 12 professors and instructors in the CIS
    Department obtained their degrees from the top
    schools in the country (e.g., Cal Tech, Cornell,
    Northwestern, Pennsylvania, and Vanderbilt). In
    addition to being leaders in their fields, our
    professors are dedicated to spending time with
  • Outstanding Facilities
  • Among the fasters computers in Alabama!
  • Computer visualization wall

UAB CIS recently acquired a 128 node compute
cluster which has been benchmarked at 1.41
teraflops per second. This is the fastest general
purpose supercomputer in the state of Alabama.
UAB CIS recently acquired a 13 megapixel, nine
tile visualization wall that measures
approximately 10' wide by 8' high.
Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Excellence in Research and Service
  • UAB is the largest employer in the state of
    Alabama and is the only school in Alabama with
    the highest research rating (RU/VH), which is
    based on grant funding and PhD production. The
    University has over 430M in external funding
    this year, which is several times that of all
    other universities in Alabama combined.
  • Research in the CIS department is funded by the
    Army Research Office (ARO), Defense Advanced
    Research Projects Agency (DARPA), International
    Business Machines (IBM), National Science
    Foundation (NSF), National Institutes of Health
    (NIH), and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Undergraduate Research Opportunities
  • For undergraduate students with a high GPA, there
    is an opportunity to do Honors research with
    faculty members. There is a special course
    available that allows a student to be mentored by
    a faculty member in a manner that provides the
    student a taste of the graduate school
    experience. Students participating in CIS Honors
    receive a special designation on their diploma at
  • The CIS department has an Undergraduate Honors
    Research Lab to host those students participating
    in Honors research. The students in this special
    lab will have exclusive access to high-end
    computers, with accommodations similar to those
    of doctoral students.

Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Undergraduate Research Opportunities
  • CIS undergraduates are awarded summer internships
    to participate in special research programs
    sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The
    students participating in these opportunities
    continue their research throughout the academic
    year and prepare research talks and papers that
    are published at regional conferences. Over the
    past two years, CIS students placed in the top 3
    at the ACM Mid-southeast conference in
    Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

3 First Place Winners UAB CIS students have
received first place in all categories
(Undergrad, Masters, PhD) amid students from 7
states. Freshman Research Undergraduate Amos
Smith presented his research as a true Freshman
(first in conferences 30 year history), and was
awarded first place as a Sophomore.
Reasons to Consider UAB CIS
  • Programming Contest Team
  • Each year, the CIS department sends our top 9
    students to compete in the annual ACM programming
    contest (held the last few years in Melbourne,
    Florida). To prepare students for this
    competition, a new course has been introduced in
    the curriculum that teaches students problem
    solving techniques not typically covered in core

The 2008 UAB CIS Competitive Programming teams
placed 1st and 2nd at their contest site for the
ACM International Computer Programming
Competition, beating all other schools in Alabama
and Mississippi and producing UAB's best-ever
finish in the Southeast region overall (5th and
13th place overall in Southeast).
For more information
UAB Main Web Site
UAB CIS Web Site
Summary of K-12 Outreach Activities (videos and
You all are invited to come take a tour and visit
our department!
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