Sunday, August 31, 2014

Summer in the City

I am originally from outside of Cleveland, Ohio, but I enjoy being at Fordham so much that I spend at least part of every month on campus, which adds up to about 10 months out of the year!  Attending Fordham has provided me with so many opportunities to further my education beyond the traditional classroom setting.  My first semester as a freshman I began attending meetings for the Wireless Sensor Data Mining (WISDM) Lab, a part of the computer science department, and now I am a paid research assistant for WISDM.  Dr. Weiss, the professor in charge of the lab, has mentored me and guided me through the process of conducting my own research and applying for research grants.  Fordham College at Rose Hill offers undergraduate research grants for the academic year as well for the summer.  I have spent my past two summers working in the WISDM lab and living at the Rose Hill campus due to the generous financial support from Fordham and the Clare Boothe Luce Foundation, which is a program that promotes the involvement of women in science.

Undergraduate as well as graduate students contribute to the endeavors of the WISDM lab.  This summer we focused on improving our activity recognition application, Actitracker, that is a free fitness app for Android (we are in the process of creating an iOS version) smartphones that monitors your level of activity throughout the day.  We also began integrating smartwatches into the Actitracker system.  My work focused on building and testing models for the computer algorithms to identify the activities users perform based on readings from the devices’ accelerometers and gyroscopes.  I also began a separate project with my professor on cost ratios and their effect on data mining algorithms, but I don’t want to bore you with all of the technical details.  Here are links to our websites if you are interested in learning more about the WISDM lab and Actitracker.    

Although I was working full-time in the WISDM lab, I still found some time to take advantage of Fordham’s location in New York City.  Just to name a few of my adventures: I went to Coney Island, Central Park, SoHo, Shake Shack, Magnolia Bakery, and I even took a cruise on the Hudson and around lower Manhattan.
Central Park when my friend and I had a picnic with Shake Shack

The beach at Coney Island


Views from the cruise around Manhattan
I was not the only one taking advantage of Fordham's proximity to the city.  While I was working on campus two television series, Madam Secretary and Forever, were filming scenes on the beautiful Rose Hill campus.  I'm excited to watch these series to see how they incorporate my home into their plots.

Production crews setting up to film around Eddie's 
One of the many reason that I love attending Fordham is that I have the opportunity to participate in undergraduate research, something that not all of my friends from home can boast about, and I can enjoy a break from my academics by exploring the great city that is New York.  

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