Introducing New Faculty in the Physical Sciences Division

September 16, 2019

Yuxin Chen, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Yuxin Chen

Yuxin Chen researches probabilistic reasoning and machine learning. His work examines decision making problems that arise in robotics, scientific discovery and human-centered systems, asking how users can intelligently acquire information for decision making when facing a large volume of data. To address this question, Chen develops interactive machine learning systems that involve active learning, sequential decision making, interpretable models and machine teaching. Previously, Chen was a postdoctoral scholar at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and received his Ph.D. in computer science from ETH Zurich in 2017.

Marshini Chetty, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Marshini Chetty

Marshini Chetty's research in human-computer interaction focuses on usable security and the Internet, studying how people use the Internet and building technologies that empower users by providing them with accurate, clear, and real-time information about — and control over — Internet privacy, security, performance, and costs. Her previous work with the Princeton Human-Computer Interaction Lab informed Internet policy and built systems to help elementary school-age children learn about online safety and privacy. Chetty earned a Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Masters and Bachelors in Computer Science from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. 

Clay Córdova, Neubauer Family Assistant Professor, Physics

Clay Cordova

Clay Córdova is a theoretical physicist focusing primarily on quantum field theory, a unifying framework for a broad array of physical phenomena involving matter and forces at the quantum level.  His research has involved aspects of particle physics, condensed matter physics, and quantum gravity, as well as related topics in mathematics. Córdova holds a PhD in physics from Harvard University.  Prior to coming to UChicago, he was a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows and a Long-Term Member at the Institute for Advanced Study.

Nick Feamster, Neubauer Professor, Computer Science

Nick Feamster

Nick Feamster joins UChicago as the Neubauer Professor in the Department of Computer Science and faculty director of the Center for Data and Computing. He researches computer networking and networked systems, with a particular interest in Internet censorship, privacy, and the Internet of Things. His work on experimental networked systems and security aims to make networks easier to manage, more secure, and more available. Feamster earned his doctorate in computer science in 2005 from MIT, where he also did his undergraduate work. He is also an avid distance runner, having completed nearly 20 marathons, including Boston, New York, and Chicago, as well as the Comrades Marathon, an iconic ultra-marathon in South Africa.

Bill Fefferman, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Bill Fefferman

Bill Fefferman's primary research interest is quantum computing, focused on developing tools that provide the foundation for building the next generation of useful quantum algorithms, with implications for cryptography, physics, and computational complexity theory. Fefferman received his doctorate in computer science at Caltech, held postdoctoral positions at the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Maryland, and most recently was an Assistant Research Professor at the University of Maryland and a research scientist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

Raul Castro Fernandez, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Raul Castro

Raul Castro Fernandez builds systems for discovering, preparing, and processing data, using techniques from data management, statistics, and machine learning with the ultimate goal of understanding and exploiting the value of data. Previously, Raul was a postdoctoral researcher at MIT CSAIL, and he received his PhD from Imperial College London.

Simion Filip, Associate Professor, Mathematics

Simion Filip

Simion Filip's work is in dynamical systems, which are systems that change in time according to predetermined rules. He aims to describe the underlying geometric and algebraic structures that control the long-term behavior of dynamical systems on surfaces. Filip received a PhD in mathematics from the University of Chicago, as well as an MA in mathematics from the University of Cambridge and an AB in mathematics from Princeton University. He was a junior fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows and, most recently, a member at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.

Eric Jonas, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Eric Jonas

Eric Jonas' research interests include biological signal acquisition, inverse problems, machine learning, heliophysics, neuroscience, and other exciting ways of exploiting scalable computation to understand the world. In one notable project, he asked whether advanced neuroscience methods could make sense of the microchip behind early video games such as Donkey Kong (A: No). Previously, Jonas was a postdoctoral researcher in the new Berkeley Center for Computational Imaging and RISELab at UC Berkeley EECS, and he has a Ph.D. in neuroscience and a Masters of electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Yuehaw Khoo, Assistant Professor, Statistics

Yuehaw Khoo

Yuehaw Khoo is an applied mathematician interested in developing computational and data-driven techniques for problems in biological and physical sciences. In particular, he develops methods for protein structure determination from NMR spectroscopy and more recently, from Cryo-EM. His work addresses the numerical challenges that arise in these applications using optimization and machine learning methods. Broadly speaking, his research centers on two common challenges:  (1) Non-convex, discrete or large scale optimization problems. (2) Representation of high-dimensional functions. The solutions to these challenges also find applications in engineering disciplines such as computer graphics, medical imaging and sensor networks. Khoo holds a Ph.D. from Princeton's Department of Physics.

Mark Levin, Assistant Professor, Chemistry

Mark Levin

A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Mark Levin earned a BS in chemistry at the University of Rochester before commencing graduate work as an NSF Predoctoral Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley. He received his PhD in 2017 under the direction of F. Dean Toste, with a focus on the organometallic chemistry of gold. Levin comes to Chicago from the laboratory of Eric Jacobsen at Harvard University, where he has been studying hypervalent iodine-catalyzed fluorination as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow. At Chicago, Levin will develop new catalysts by leveraging inorganic and organometallic reactive species with a multidisciplinary approach that will include synthesis, spectroscopy, mechanistic analysis across both organic and inorganic chemistry.

Dana Mendelson, Assistant Professor, Mathematics

Dana Mendelson

Dana Mendelson's research focuses on understanding the dynamics of nonlinear dispersive equations which model wave propagation in a wide array of physical systems. She addresses questions such as existence, uniqueness and asymptotics of solutions to these equations using a combination of deterministic and probabilistic techniques. Mendelson earned her Ph.D. at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She was subsequently the Viterbi endowed postdoctoral fellow at MSRI, a postdoctoral member of the Institute for Advanced Study, and most recently an L.E. Dickson instructor here at UChicago.

Lorenzo Orecchia, Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Lorenzo Orecchia

Lorenzo Orecchia's research focuses on the design of efficient algorithms for fundamental computational challenges in machine learning and combinatorial optimization. His approach is based on combining ideas from continuous and discrete optimization into a single framework for algorithm design. Orecchia was previously an assistant professor of computer science at Boston University and an Applied Math Instructor at MIT. He received his PhD from University of California, Berkeley in 2011. 

Daniil Rudenko, Assistant Professor of Mathematics

Daniil Rudenko Headshot

Daniil Rudenko's research is centered around the theory of periods: integrals of algebraic functions. His current work is focused on studying volumes of hyperbolic polytopes, non-Euclidean trigonometry and its quantization. Previously he worked on special values of zeta functions, mixed Tate motives and polylogarithms. Daniil earned a PhD in mathematics at the National Research University Higher School of Economics, as well as an MA in mathematics from the University of Cambridge and a BS in mathematics from Saint Petersburg State University. Most recently, he was an L.E. Dickson instructor in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Chicago.

Weixin Tang, Neubauer Family Assistant Professor, Chemistry

Weixin Tang

Born in Jiangsu, China, Weixin Tang received her bachelor's degree in chemistry and biology from Tsinghua University in Beijing before moving to the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign to pursue a PhD in chemistry. She completed a thesis on ribosomal natural products under the supervision of Wilfred van der Donk in 2014. Tang then joined David Liu's lab at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT as an HHMI Fellow of the Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund for Medical Research. In the Liu lab, she worked on engineering and repurposing the CRISPR system for biomedical and synthetic biology applications. At Chicago, Tang will develop and apply new chemical and biophysical tools to explore the biological system. 

Jingshu Wang, Assistant Professor, Statistics

Jingshu Wang

Jingshu Wang's research mainly focuses on developing statistical methods for cutting-edge bio-technologies and genetic problems, including single-cell RNA sequencing, Mendelian Randomization and structural variation in the 3D genome. Jingshu got her Ph.D. in statistics from Stanford University in 2016 and was a postdoc researcher in statistics at the University of Pennsylvania.

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