Monday, March 9, 2020

Trusted CI Announces The 2020 Fellows

Trusted CI, the NSF Cybersecurity Center of Excellence, is excited to announce the Trusted CI Open Science Cybersecurity Fellows. Six individuals with professional interests in cybersecurity have been selected from a nationally competitive pool.  During the year of their Fellowship, they will receive recognition and cybersecurity professional development including training and travel funding to cybersecurity related events.

The 2020 Trusted CI Open Science Cybersecurity Fellows are:

Songjie Wang
Cyberinfrastructure Engineer, University of Missouri

Songjie provides services to the research community for cloud infrastructure and deployment, technology transformation, system engineering, and application development. He is actively involved in various research projects that concern problems in cloud computing, cybersecurity, mobile edge computing, and machine learning. He is a liaison between the college and the campus high-performance computing center to facilitate research productivity.


Mohamad Qayoom
IT Consultant, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center New Orleans (LSUHSC-NO)

Mohamad serves LSUHSC-NO’s research community in bridging the gap between research and computing. He possesses a flexible portfolio of information systems management and services developed through hands-on architectural expertise. He is passionate about developing a top-quality IT workforce. He teaches courses in networking, security, and project management, and classes for IT certification exams.

Smriti Bhatt
Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Texas A&M University-San Antonio

Smriti Bhatt, Ph.D., does research in security and privacy in Cloud and Internet of Things (IoT). She focuses on securing authorization, communication, and data flow in the context of Cloud enabled IoT domains such as smart home, smart health, and wearable IoT. Dr. Bhatt is passionate about enhancing diversity and inclusion in computing and serves as a co-advisor for a Women in CyberSecurity student chapter. She is active in Grace Hopper Celebration, CyberW, and San Antonio Women in IT.

Luanzheng “Lenny” Guo
Ph.D. candidate, University of California Merced

Lenny’s research is under the supervision of Professor Dong Li and focuses on system resilience and reliability in high-performance computing (HPC) systems. Lenny has broad research interests at the intersection of HPC systems, data analytics, and cybersecurity. His continuing research goal is to develop cybersecurity solutions for HPC cyberinfrastructures.

Jerry Perez
Director of Cyber Infrastructure Operations, University of Texas at Dallas

Jerry Perez, Ph.D., has over 18 years of experience using and teaching HPC technologies. Dr. Perez is interested in collaborating with other universities to share HPC knowledge; teaching computer science subjects such as programming, systems design, and massive-compute high-throughput computing (compute grids); creating cyberinfrastructure projects to share resources; and promote academic excellence through HPC in the classroom.

Laura Christopherson
Senior Data Scientist, Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI)
Laura's background is in theater, art, and information science. Her interests include social informatics, language and communication, user-centered design, and research and design ethics. At RENCI, she works with scientists to design and develop cyberinfrastructure to support them in their research. It is important to her to take good care of the scientists she works with and to make their research data safe and secure.

The Fellows will receive training consisting of a Virtual Institute, providing 20 hours of basic cybersecurity training over six months. The training will be delivered by Trusted CI staff and invited speakers. The Virtual Institute will be presented as a weekly series via Zoom and recorded to be publicly available for later online viewing. Travel support is budgeted (during their first year only) to cover fellows’ attendance at the NSF Cybersecurity Summit, PEARC, and one professional development opportunity agreed to with Trusted CI. The Fellows will be added to an email list to discuss any challenges they encounter that will receive prioritized attention from Trusted CI staff. Trusted CI will recognize the Fellows on its website and social media. Fellowships are funded for one year, after which the Trusted CI Fellows will be encouraged to continue participating in Trusted CI activities in the years following their fellowship year. After their training in the Virtual Institute, Fellows, with assistance from the Trusted CI team, are expected to help their science community with cybersecurity and make them aware of Trusted CI for complex needs. By the end of the year, they will be expected to present or write a short white paper on the cybersecurity needs of their community and some initial steps they will take (or have taken) to address these needs. After the Fellowship year Trusted CI will continue to recognize the cohort of Fellows and give them prioritized attention. Over the years, this growing cohort of Fellows will broaden and diversify Trusted CI’s impact.

 About the Trusted CI Fellows Program

Trusted CI serves the scientific community as the NSF Cybersecurity Center of Excellence, providing leadership in and assistance in cybersecurity in the support of research. In 2019, Trusted CI establish an Open Science Cybersecurity Fellows program. This program establish and support a network of Fellows with diversity in both geography and scientific discipline. These fellows will have access to training and other resources to foster their professional development in cybersecurity. In exchange, they will champion cybersecurity for science in their scientific and geographic communities and communicate challenges and successful practices to Trusted CI.

Fellows come from a variety of career stages. They demonstrate a passion for their area, the ability to communicate ideas effectively, and a real interest in the role of cybersecurity in research. Fellows are empowered to talk about cybersecurity to a wider audience, network with others who share a passion for cybersecurity for open science and learn key skills that benefit them and their collaborators.