Cyberinfrastructure Day at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff

The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff is hosting CI Day on Friday, April 22 on their campus. This exciting FREE program is intended to showcase state-of-the-art computing technologies available to researchers at the university and across the region.


Venue | Program | Bios



University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
Room Location: ACD II RM 108
Campus Map



8:00 – 9:00

Registration and Coffee

9:00 – 9:30

Welcome and Opening Remarks

  • Karl Barnes – Consultant, National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO)
  • Alex Ramirez, Ph.D., Director of Information Technology Initiatives, Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU)
  • Jessie L. Walker, Ph.D., University of Arkansas Pine Bluff
  • Lawrence A. Davis, Ph.D., Chancellor, University of Arkansas Pine Bluff (UAPB)

9:30 – 10:00

Opening Keynote: Overview of Cyberinfrastructure and the Breadth of its Application
Geoffrey C. Fox, Ph.D., Professor of Computer Science, Information Science and Physics, Community Grids Lab, Indiana University

10:00 – 10:30

Introduction to the TeraGrid
Jim Ferguson, Director of Education, Outreach, and Training, National Institute for Computational Sciences (NICS), University of Tennessee

10:30 – 10:45


10:45 – 11:15

Cyberinfrastructure in Humanities
Alan B. Craig, Associate Director for Human-Computer Interaction, Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, National Center for Supercomputing Applications, University of Illinois

11:15 – 11:45

Cyberinfrastructure in Education
Krishna,Madhavan., Ph.D., Purdue University

11:45 – 12:15

nanoHUB .org
George Adams, Deputy Director of the Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN)

12:15 – 1:15
Black Gold Room

Lunch Presentation – Research Opportunities at the National Science Foundation
Richard Alo, Ph.D., Program Director, Directorate for Education Human Resources, National Science Foundation (NSF)

1:15 – 1:45

Using Supercomputers to Design and Model Novel Materials
Steven Richardson, Ph.D., Professor, Electrical Engineering, Howard University

1:45 – 2:15

Polar Grid
Je’aime PowellPolar Grid Manager/Graduate Researcher, Elizabeth City State University

2:15 – 2:45

Arkansas Research Alliance
Jerry Adams, III., President/Chief Executive Officer, Arkansas Research Alliance

2:45 – 3:00


3:00 – 3:30

Arkansas Research and Education Optical Network (ARE-ON)
Micheal Abbiatti, Executive Director, Arkansas Research and Education Optical Network

3:30 – 4:00

CyberInfrastructure at UAPB
Willette Totten, Director of Technical Services, University of Arkansas Pine Bluff

4:00 – 4:30

Arkansas Cyberinfrastructure Training/Education Consortium Jessie Walker, Ph.D., Assistant Professor/Coordinator-Computer Science Unit, UAPB

4:30 – 4:45


4:45 – 5:45

UAPB Showcase Projects Related to Cyberinfrastructure

5:45 – 6:00

Closing Remarks


Bios of Selected Presenters

Michael Abbiatti

Michael Abbiatti, is the executive director of the Arkansas Research and Optical Education Network at the University of Arkansas.  ARE-ON, a high-speed, fiber-based optical communications network established and operated by a consortium of public four-year universities in Arkansas, is a state entity governed by the presidents and chancellors of participating institutions, in cooperation with the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.  He co-founded and co-created the Louisiana Optical Network Initiative, which was designed as an economic tool empowering research and academic communities to become a more effective economic development resource.  Mr. Abbiatti was also Louisiana's initial member of the National LambdaRail board of directors and was responsible for the creation and management of the Louisiana Education and Research Network as a statewide Internet2 resource.  Mr. Abbiatti earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Arkansas.  He received his education specialist degree at Northwestern State University and has done extensive post-graduate work, including a certification in technical administration of complex teaching/learning initiatives. He is also a graduate of the EDUCAUSE Information Technology Leadership Institute and the WCET management of distance education program, both basic and advanced. Mr. Abbiatti also attended Louisiana State University Health Science Center Graduate School, Centenary College, the U.S. Army Medical Field Service School, and is a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.


George B. Adams, III

George B. Adams III is the Deputy Director of the Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN). He earned the BSEE degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 1978 and the MSEE and Ph.D. degrees in 1980 and 1984 from Purdue University. In 1983 he joined the Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science at the NASA Ames Research Center as one of the initial five staff members and worked in high-performance computing for scientific applications. He was a member of the founding Executive Committee for Supercomputing ’88 (now known as the SC’XX conference series). In 1987 he joined the faculty of the School of Electrical Engineering, Purdue University. In 2000, he joined the planning team for what became the Birck Nanotechnology Center (BNC) facility in Purdue’s Discovery Park, widely considered the preeminent university nanoscale research facility. He became Research Development Manager for BNC in 2004 and Special Projects Manager for Discovery Park in 2006. Dr. Adams has written over 50 papers and book chapters, held one US patent, and received three national awards for his distance education classes.


Jerry B. Adams

Jerry B. Adams is the President and CEO of the Arkansas Research Alliance (ARA).  Before joining ARA, Mr. Adams enjoyed 34 years at Acxiom Corporation, working in a number of different leadership capacities. Mr. Adams retired in 2007 while serving as the Corporate External Relations Leader.  He served as the chair of Accelerate Arkansas, a statewide group of leaders focused on building a knowledge-based economy in Arkansas. Mr. Adams also chaired the EAST Initiative, a secondary school technology-based project-learning program active in over 200 schools in Arkansas and six other states.  He also serves on the Southern Technology Council, a council of the Southern Growth Policies Board.  Having served on the Governor's Blue Ribbon Committee for Higher Education, Mr. Adams remains involved and passionate about education reform.  He currently serves on the Arkansas Department of Education's Accountability Council, the Board of Visitors at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Central Arkansas’s Advisory Board for the School of Mathematics and Natural Sciences.  Mr. Adams recently served on the University of Arkansas’s Walton School of Business Dean’s Advisory Board.  Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe has recently appointed Mr. Adams to the Governor’s Healthcare Roundtable. He is the founding board chair for the Conway Interfaith Clinic focused on providing medical and dental services to segments of the community that are underserved. He also currently serves on both the state and county boards for the Arkansas Community Foundation.


Richard Aló

Richard Aló is the Executive Director of the Center for Computational Sciences and Advanced Distributed Simulation and Executive Director for Grants and Contracts in the College of Sciences and Technology at the University of Houston-Downtown. He has held these positions since 1995. He earned his MA and Ph.D. in Mathematics with minor in Computer Science from the Pennsylvania State University in 1965. He has held his current position of Professor of Computer and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Houston-Downtown since 1982.  From 1982 to 1995, he was Chair of the Department of Computer and Mathematical Sciences at UHD.  He has served on several advisory and executive boards, including the Mathematical Association of America’s SUMMA Committee (Support for Undergraduate Minority Mathematics Awareness), Association of Departments of Computer and Information Science and Engineering at Minority Institutions (founding member), Coalition for Diversity in Computing (Chair and also founding member), National Science Board NSF GRPA Committee and Multi Sector Crises Management Center, Board of Directors, Washington. He chaired two national conferences for ADMI and co chaired the Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing Symposium, Houston, 2001 and the Education Committee for Supercomputing 2002. Dr. Aló was selected as the 2002 Educator of the Year by the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Conference (HENAAC). He has published over 200 research papers and graduate text, Cambridge University Press. Recent areas of investigation include Automatic Decision Making (Artificial Intelligence), Object Recognition (Facial Expression and Gesture Analysis), and Fuzzy Logic. His primary research and educational interests are computational science applications, grid computing and cyber infrastructure tools, automated reasoning and decision making. He is currently PI on the NSF CI-TEAM Implementation award Minority Serving Institutions – CyberInfrastructure Empowerment Coalition (MSI-CIEC), co PI on the NSF Broadening Participation award, Computing Alliance for Hispanic Serving Institutions, and co PI on NSF Broadening Participation in Computing award, Advancing Females to Professoriate in Computing (FemProf).


Jim Ferguson

Jim Ferguson is the Director of Education, Outreach and Training for the National Institute for Computational Sciences (NICS) at the University of Tennessee.   Before joining NICS, Jim's focus was programming for, training and educating users of high-performance computers and networks. Jim's previous experience includes postions at Pratt & Whitney Aircraft and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Jim is an alumnus of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.


Geoffery Fox

Geoffrey Fox received a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics from Cambridge University and is now professor of Computer Science, Informatics, and Physics at Indiana University.  He is director of the Community Grids Laboratory of the Pervasive Technology Laboratories at Indiana University.  He previously held positions at Caltech, Syracuse University and Florida State University.  He has published over 550 papers in physics and computer science and been a major author on four books.  Dr. Fox has worked in a variety of applied computer science fields with his work on computational physics evolving into contributions to parallel computing and now to Grid and multicore chip systems.  His interest in education includes Internet delivery of courses and development of new curricula for interdisciplinary studies. He has worked on the computing issues in several application areas – currently focusing on Defense, Earthquake and Ice-sheet Science and Chemical Informatics.  Parallel computing on multicore chips is a major research focus.  He is currently Vice President of the Open Grid Forum responsible for eScience.  He is involved in several projects to enhance the capabilities of Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) including three funded by National Science Foundation (NSF) CI-TEAM playing a lead role in the MSI Cyberinfrastructure Empowerment Coalition (MSI-CIEC).  His role in these is linking MSI’s to the international Grid and computational science communities.


Krishna P.C. Madhavan

Krishna P.C. Madhavan earned his bachelor’s degree from Loyola College (Chennai, India), his master’s degree from Jawaharlal Nehru University (New Delhi, India), and his Ph.D. degree from Purdue University. Previously, he was an assistant professor with a joint appointment in the School of Computing and the Department of Engineering and Science Education at Clemson University. He specializes in the development, deployment, and assessment of advanced cyberinfrastructure tools in day-to-day engineering and science curricula. One of the key aspects of his work focuses on how semantic grid-based technologies and tools can co-exist with students’ lifestyles, learning patterns, and technology choices. He was awarded the NSF CAREER award for work on transforming engineering education through learner-centric, adaptive cyber-tools and cyber-environments.


Alex Ramírez

Alex Ramírez is the Executive Director for Information Technology (IT) Initiatives at the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU), the only national association of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs).  Dr. Ramírez has been in the IT field for over 20 years, 15 at the University of California, Riverside, becoming the Director of Academic Computing, before joining the University of Texas at San Antonio and then HACU. While at HACU he served as the HSI Community Leader for the NSF Advanced Networking with Minority Serving Institutions (AN-MSI) project in strategic partnership with EDUCAUSE, AIHEC, and NAFEO.  This strategic partnership has grown in the CI-TEAM demonstration project, MSI Cyberinfrastructure (CI) Institute (MSI-CI2), and its implementation project, MSI CI Empowerment Coalition (MSI-CIEC) that seeks to meaningfully engage MSIs in CI through collaborations for the betterment of MSIs, the students they serve, and the international cyberinfrastructure community.  Alex is a co-PI on both.  He has spoken at national conferences on IT in the HSI community, and has prepared testimony on behalf of HACU on IT issues for congressional committees and commissions as well as for the NSF Blue Ribbon Panel on Cyberinfrastructure.  He currently is appointed to the Congressionally mandated Committee for Equal Opportunity in Science and Engineering (CEOSE), the Science Advisory Board of the TeraGrid, and the NSF Advisory Committee for  Cyberinfrastructure (ACCI) where he is the Chair of the Task Force on Cyberlearning and Workforce Development.


Steven Richardson

Steven Richardson received his Ph.D. in Physics from The Ohio State University and is a professor of Electrical Engineering and a principal investigator in both the Keck Center for the Design of Nanoscale Materials for Molecular Recognition, and the CREST Center for Nanomaterials Characterization Science and Processing Technology (NCSPT) both at  Howard University.  Dr. Richardson's research focuses on using supercomputers and massively parallel processing (MPP) machines to solve problems in computational materials science and computational chemistry. Dr. Richardson's research was cited by the National Science Foundation in 1992 with a Career Advancement Award. He is past recipient of a Ford Foundation postdoctoral fellowship and has recently been a visiting professor at the University of Lisbon and the Institute de Engenharia de Sistemas e Computadores (INESC), Lisbon, Portugal, and the Cherry L. Emerson Center for Scientific Computation at Emory University.  Dr. Richardson has been a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer and is currently a 2011 Distinguished Summer Faculty Fellow at The Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C.


Alan Craig

Alan Craig is the Associate Director for Human-Computer Interaction at the Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts, and Social Science. He is also a researcher at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Alan has focused his career on the interface between humans and machines. He has been involved in many different capacities related to scientific visualization, virtual reality, data mining, multi-modal representation of information, and collaborative systems. He has been with NCSA for nearly twenty-five years where he has aided scientists in adopting high performance computing technologies to advance their research. Alan has also been instrumental in developing next generation tools and techniques in high performance computing. In his new role with I-CHASS he is bringing HPC methodology, tools, and techniques to researchers and educators in humanities, arts, and social science. He is co-author of the book Understanding Virtual Reality, published by Morgan Kaufmann Publishing, and author of the newly released book, Developing Virtual Reality Applications, from Elsevier Publishing.


Je’aime Henri Powell

Je’aime Henri Powell is a Computer Information Systems Ph.D student at Nova Southeastern University, the Polar Grid Manger at Elizabeth City State University(ECSU), the TeraGrid Campus Champion for ECSU and a research team mentor for the Center of Excellence in Remote Sensing Education and Research at ECSU. He received his Master's in Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Remote Sensing from ECSU in the spring of 2010 with a thesis entitled "Multi-Channel RADAR Depth Sounder Signal Processing: A Distributed Computing Approach."  Mr. Powell earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from ECSU with honors in 2004. Prior to this he worked in his chosen field of information technology with multiple small computer repair companies eventually working as a Senior Network Specialist for Canon Information Technology Systems (CITS). After graduation Mr. Powell progressed to the level of a Certified Technical Training Specialist for CITS before beginning his graduate work in the spring of 2007 at ECSU. During this time Mr. Powell also accepted a position with the Center of Excellence in Remote Sensing Education and Research under the Polar Grid research grant at ECSU as the Polar Grid Manager. In this position he has participated in field based clustered computing along with the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets of the University of Kansas. This fieldwork has allowed him to assist with the first deployment of the Polar Grid cluster in Ilulissat, Greenland during the summer of 2008. Mr. Powell’s current projects include the management of a 512 core computing cluster named Umfort and the creation of an iTunes University portal at ECSU. During his career Mr. Powell has been published and presented in numerous conferences including IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society Conferences, TeraGrid Conferences, ADMI Conferences, Supercomputing Conferences and BEYA Conferences.



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