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August 18, 2021

News Briefs

Miller ICA Presents "Jacolby Satterwhite: Spirits Roaming on the Earth"

Carnegie Mellon University's Miller Institute for Contemporary Art is pleased to present "Jacolby Satterwhite: Spirits Roaming on the Earth," the first major monographic survey of Satterwhite's wide-ranging practice. Curated by Elizabeth Chodos, director of the Miller ICA, "Spirits Roaming on the Earth" traces 10 years of Satterwhite's panoramic oeuvre. The exhibition opened Saturday, Aug. 14, and runs through Sunday, Dec. 5, with a book launch and reception to be announced.

Satterwhite incorporates a broad set of real and fantastical references in his work — drawing from sources that include his home and family life, art history, mythology, video gaming, queer club scenes and Black culture — that inform his 3D animated films, sculptures, electronic dance tracks and performances.

"His wide-ranging practice takes shape and evokes an essential moral lesson on the healing properties of human creativity transforming existential uncertainty into a generative engine of resilience, reinvention and celebration," Chodos said. "This quality is something he shares with his late mother and muse, Patricia Satterwhite, who leveraged her own irrepressible creative energy to transform hardship into new worlds of possibility."

Learn more about Spirits Roaming on the Earth.

Do You Hear What I Hear?  It's a Cyberattack

colored sound waves

Yang Cai, a senior systems scientist in Carnegie Mellon's CyLab has been working for years to come up with ways to make abnormalities in network traffic easier to spot. Previously, he and his research group developed a data visualization tool that allowed users to see network traffic patterns, and now he has developed a way to hear them.

In a new study presented at the International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics, Cai and two co-authors showed how cybersecurity data can be heard in the form of music. When there's a change in the network traffic, there is a change in the music.

"We wanted to articulate normal and abnormal patterns through music," Cai said. "The process of sonification — using audio to perceptualize data — is not new, but sonification to make data more appealing to the human ear is."

Find out more about Cai's research.

Faculty Earn Department of Energy Awards for Atmospheric Research

portrait of Hamish Gordonportrait of Coty JenCarnegie Mellon’s Coty Jen and Hamish Gordon have earned Department of Energy (DOE) awards for their work in atmospheric research.

The DOE recently awarded $15.6 million for new research studying the properties, formation and interactions between atmospheric clouds and the aerosols that form them. As part of the Biden Administration’s effort to combat the climate emergency, the awards will help the country’s top scientists and engineers better understand one of the most challenging aspects of earth system modeling and improve their ability to predict weather and climate patterns accurately. Jen and Gordon’s projects are two of 27 selected for the award.

Jen, assistant professor in CMU’s Chemical Engineering Department, received the award for her project, “Vertically-resolved measurements of atmospheric nucleation precursors.” Jen’s group is developing a new low-cost, robust and portable instrument, capable of being flown on drones or tethered balloons, to measure reactive gases 1 kilometer from the surface. The new tool will allow researchers to better understand how precursors are transported to higher altitudes and how their resulting nucleation rates impact aerosol number concentrations aloft.

Gordon, assistant research professor in CMU’s Engineering Research Accelerator, earned the award for his project, “Insights from ARM observations into aerosol processing and transport by extratropical cyclones and aerosol effects on cyclone clouds.” The study will use data from surface, aircraft and satellite instrumentation and high-resolution model simulations, provided by the DOE’s Atmospheric Radiation Measurement station in the Azores Islands, to determine how these cyclones affect particulate matter concentrations in the atmosphere and the effects of the particles on cyclone clouds.

Learn more about their work.

Robotics Academy Curriculum Helps Schools in Ontario

More than 1,000 students across 60 schools in Ontario used a curriculum from the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy to help contextualize math and computational thinking for students. 

This summer, FIRST Robotics Canada used a curriculum from the academy to offer safe, effective and engaging workshops in the absence of educational robotics classrooms and after-school clubs, many of which were stopped during the pandemic.

"Our team at the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy is absolutely delighted to have had the opportunity to collaborate with FIRST Canada. They did an incredible job reaching students and creating awesome STEM experiences, even when faced with the challenges brought on by COVID-19," said Jesse Flot, the academy's co-director. "I am so thankful that we were able to be a small part of the positive impact they make daily."

Attention Students: The Tartan Ambassador Program Is Seeking Applicants

Are you a student who is looking for a fall on-campus job? If the idea of getting paid to talk about your CMU student experience interests you, you may want to consider applying to become a Tartan Ambassador. 

University Communications & Marketing is looking to hire a diverse group of current undergraduate CMU students that represents different schools, programs, years and experiences at CMU. Each paid position will in-person and virtually welcome, connect and engage visitors (primarily prospective undergraduate students) through written communication and events including in-person and virtual tours and panels. 

This position includes both in-person and virtual work. An application is available through Handshake for the following positions: Fall Tartan Ambassador Application (Handshake # 5124640), Fall Host Tartan Ambassador Application (Handshake #5124719), Fall Lead Tartan Ambassador Application (Handshake #5124756) 

For more information about Handshake, please see the Career & Professional Development Center’s website. Please note, selection for the position will be on a rolling basis as applications are submitted, and training for selected candidates will begin in late August/early September.

A Tartan’s Responsibility for Fall 2021

composite of students on campus

CMU has updated A Tartan’s Responsibility for fall 2021. The four core principles remain the same, and by coming to Pittsburgh for any type of on-campus engagement all students must agree to adhere to the following:

  • Minimize the introduction of COVID-19;
  • Prevent the spread of COVID-19;
  • Contribute to the identification of COVID-19; and
  • Support the containment of COVID-19.

With each of these agreements, there are corresponding protocols that students are expected to follow. These expectations align with the minimum requirements established by the university based on up-to-date scientific data and current public health guidance.

“As Tartans, you play a crucial role in keeping one another safe and healthy by upholding these expectations,” said Gina Casalegno, vice president for student affairs and dean of students, in an email to students. “We hope that A Tartan’s Responsibility continues to serve as a reminder to maintain diligence in mitigation protocols and to remain mindful and discerning about the ethical commitments we have to one another every day.

“I continue to be heartened by the spirit of our community as I watch our students exemplify the best of what it means to be a Tartan. I look forward to sharing the year ahead as we embrace an in-person CMU experience,” she said.

Read A Tartan’s Responsibility.

Reminder: Upload Your Vaccine Documentation to the Database

All enrolled students, faculty and staff are required to upload their COVID-19 vaccine documentation to CMU’s Vaccine Database via the HealthConnect portal. Information required includes an image of your vaccine card or documentation, the type of vaccine received and the dates when received. Visit the vaccine database webpage for more details on how to upload your documentation.

Students are required to participate as part of the university's fall 2021 vaccine requirement for all enrolled students.

If you have not yet been vaccinated, free COVID-19 vaccine clinics will be offered on campus in August and September. An appointment is necessary to receive a vaccination at these clinics. To schedule your appointment, please visit this webpage.

See the COVID-19 Vaccine Database webpage for more details.

Who's New at CMU?

Carnegie Mellon welcomes the following new staff members this week.

  • Abigail Cruz, Staff Therapist, Counseling and Psychological Services, Community Health & Well-Being;
  • Andre Roberts, Assistant Director of SLICE (Leadership Development), Student Leadership, Involvement, & Civic Engagement;
  • Brian Loughlin, Research Administrator, Proposals, Associate Vice President for Research & Academic Admin;
  • Cody Ickes, Assistant Security Researcher, SEI Monitoring and Response;
  • Ife Sinclair, Staff Therapist, Counseling and Psychological Services, Community Health & Well-Being; and
  • Mark D'Angelo, DEI Learning and Development Trainer, Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.