Researchers from the Culturally Relevant Computing Lab (CRCL) in the Computer Science Department at Morehouse College recently submitted an abstract titled, “Exploring the Needs and Preferences of Underrepresented Minority Students for an Intelligent Virtual Mentoring System” to the 2019 HCI International Conference. Their abstract was accepted as a poster for publication in the conference proceedings and presentation. The authors of this abstract are Naja A. Mack, Research Scientist; Earl W. Huff Research Scientist; Robert Cummings, Postbaccalaureate Researcher; and Dr. Kinnis Gosha, Hortenius I. Chenault Endowed Associate Professor and Director of Non-Traditional Academic Initiatives.
The HCI International 2019 is the 21st International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction. It will take place July 26th-30th at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Orlando area, Florida, USA, under the auspices of 18 distinguished international boards.
Dr. Kinnis Gosha was recently selected as the recipient of the Hortenius I. Chenault Endowed Professorship. He will hold the term appointed Chenault Endowed Professor in Mathematics and Sciences. The purpose of this professorship is to provide salary support that will allow Dr. Gosha to enhance his research at Morehouse College. Dr. Gosha’s primary research interests include expanding computer science education, broadening participation in computing, green computing, and culturally relevant computing. Undergraduate researchers in his lab, the Culturally Relevant Computing Lab, investigate research problems centered on creating innovative computing technologies to solve cultural problems and issues. Applications of his research include robotics, avatars, and video games.
Dr. Kinnis Gosha Director of the Culturally Relevant Computing lab spoke at the University of Georgia Tech’s Graphic Visualization Usability (GVU) Center’s Brown Bag Seminar. The discussion was on the topic of ways to broaden participation in computing. Dr. Gosha introduced the concept of how conversational agents such as Siri and Alexa are already doing this in everyday households. However, these agents also provide a unique opportunity to provide mentoring and advisement to individuals in ways that cannot be accomplished by traditional human-to-human interactions. His presentation provided details on multiple projects (in progress and completed) that leverage various types of conversational agents to address issues in the area of broadening participation in computing.
The research paper entitled “Awareness and Readiness for Graduate School of African American Male Computer Science Students” was accepted into the 3rd Annual Conference for Research on Equity & Sustained Participation in Engineering, Computing, & Technology (RESPECT) hosted in February 2018 in Baltimore, MD. Congratulations to the authors Earl Huff Jr. and Dr. Kinnis Gosha on their achievement. The paper provided significant insight into African American computer science students’ confidence levels, academic and technical capabilities, limitations of assistance, and likelihood in pursuing graduate education.
The Culturally Relevant Computing Lab and Benjamin E. Mays High School were selected as one of the six partnerships to receive the Innovation Fund Tiny Grant for 2017, with the award received being $6998. The goal of the Innovation Fund Tiny Grant was to develop programs in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM). With this grant students will be provided mentors to help guide them through their virtual AP Computer Science courses. In addition to those students participating in the program, student enrolled in Georgia Virtual AP Computer Science and AP Computer Science Principles courses will also benefit from the Tiny Grant through tutoring and assistance.
The Culturally Relevant Computing Lab has been awarded a contract by Clarkson Aerospace, LLC to conduct research in the area of cybersecurity. The research will be conducted primarily by members of Morehouse College, Spelman College and Clark Atlanta University Navy ROTC. The contract is set at $157,000 and runs for nine months. The research to be conducted will be in the area of social media data analysis and mining.
Dr. Kinnis Gosha, the founder of the Culturally Relevant Computing Lab at Morehouse College, will serve as co-Principal Investigator of the Increasing Minority Presence within Academia through Continuous Training (Impact) grant. This $299,856 award, funded by the National Science Foundation, Inclusion Across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science (INCLUDES) program, is led by Georgia Institute of Technology, as a multi-institutional partnership. The focus of this project is to “impact the engineering faculty ecosystem by demonstrating a new method of support and engage diverse engineering faculty through retired and emeriti faculty who may have preceded them in their chosen field of study,” according to Dr. Comas Haynes of the Georgia Tech Research Institute.
Culturally Relevant Computing Lab Director, Dr. Kinnis Gosha, and Google software engineers, developed a course for Morehouse students to learn Android Application programming, along with the Applied Computer Science(CS) content, and received hands-on experience in a for-credit class. The course, titled “Mobile App Development with Advanced Data Structures,”combined lecture, class discussion and in-class assignments targeted at learning Java, advanced data structures, ADS, and other basics for Android programming. The Applied CS classes ran for 75 minutes and were held twice a week for 16 weeks in the fall semester of 2016. These classes, the first at the university for mobile app development, filled up quickly due to the buzz around the collaboration with Google, and 11 out of 12 students successfully completed the course. Applied CS content enabled students to understand, apply and implement advanced data types using a mobile application platform that more than two billion devices run on today.