ExploreCSR Introduces Female Students to the World of Computer Science Research

In most university computer science classes, women are a minority. But at last weekend’s exploreCSR workshop at California State University Long Beach, the opposite was true.

The three-day workshop, supported by a $35,000 grant from Google, drew about 50 students from universities throughout Southern California, including Fullerton, Long Beach, Pomona, and San Diego in the California State University system, and Irvine and San Diego in the University of California system. All but three were women. Continue reading “ExploreCSR Introduces Female Students to the World of Computer Science Research”

CECS Celebrates Accomplishments of Its Graduates and Alumnus

Group shot of Louise and Mike Mahoney, left, with their son, Tom, and COE Dean Forouzan Golshani

Computer science alumni Tim Mahoney says he loves Long Beach State so much that he has a black-and-gold mug in his office at Apple, where he works as a software engineering manager. Son of former College of Engineering Dean Mike Mahoney, who is now provost and vice president of academic affairs for Cal State East Bay, Tim said he attended five schools over seven years before earning his degree.

At CSULB, he received almost all As. In fact, Mahoney still remembers the one faculty member who gave him a B.

After graduating in 2013, he applied for more than 100 jobs and toured Silicon Valley companies to distribute his resume in person before receiving the fateful call from Apple. “Not everybody thinks they can apply to their dream job and get it, but there’s no harm in trying,” said Mahoney, recipient of a CECS Outstanding Alumnus award.

Dean Forouzan Golshani advised graduates to find their passion—and stay in touch with faculty. “I’m so glad we’re here to celebrate your success,” he said. “You overcame obstacles. You pulled through and you’re here.” Continue reading “CECS Celebrates Accomplishments of Its Graduates and Alumnus”

G2 Software Systems Interviews for Open Computer Science Positions

San Diego-based G2 Software Systems is often enlisted to fix broken systems or refresh ones that are out of date. The company’s sweet spot is with the defense industry’s large, complex, and sometimes antiquated, systems. G2 was hired to create software that sends alerts throughout all branches of the military, notifies the continent’s defense and aviation organizations to suspicious aircraft, and lets military personnel be trained simultaneously around the globe.

On Wednesday, a group from G2 visited the CSULB College of Engineering to interview graduating computer science seniors for possible jobs or internships. G2’s founder, Georgia Griffiths, is a CSULB alumni and member of the Dean’s Advisory Council.

G2 General Manager Pete Keyes. COE Development Director Nicole Forrest-Boggs, and mathematician Christopher Priebe.
G2 General Manager Pete Keyes. COE Development Director Nicole Forrest-Boggs, and mathematician Christopher Priebe.

“She’s a great supporter of scholarships for the College of Engineering,” said COE Development Director Nicole Forrest-Boggs, whose office organized the event. “We’re very happy to have them here.”

The G2 contingent included general manager Pete Keyes, mathematician Christopher Priebe, and office manager Jessica Rose, a CUSLB alumni.

Priebe, who manages a technology team at G2, said job prospects are bright for computer science majors. “This is a booming industry. It’s a seller’s market. There’s a lot of competition for engineers,” he said. Continue reading “G2 Software Systems Interviews for Open Computer Science Positions”

Google Offers CECS Students Advice for Surviving a Technical Interview

It’s the subject of numerous books, blog posts, and tutorials: How to get hired at Google. On Thursday, CSULB Computer Engineering & Computer Science students had a chance to get the inside track on how to join a company that’s long been seen as a top workplace for tech talent.

Sponsored by the CSULB Career Center and the CECS Department, the workshop drew about 200 computer science and engineering students who heard from a trio of Googlers about “20 percent time,” social groups and “the Google 15.”

“Google would be an amazing place to work,” said Aimee Threlkeld, a computer engineering senior who is interning with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena and has already applied at Google. With an interest in embedded systems, Threlkeld was hoping that the workshop would help her clear her technical interview in the event she got a callback. Continue reading “Google Offers CECS Students Advice for Surviving a Technical Interview”

CSULB Students Attend Grace Hopper Celebration of Female Technologists

Women are a distinct minority in computer science classes at many universities, including CSULB. That wasn’t the case at the recent Grace Hopper Celebration, where more than 6,000 female technologists gathered for keynotes, workshops, networking, and job interviews.

“There were girls everywhere,” said Victoria Hong, a computer science major and president of the ACM chapter, one of four CSULB students who received scholarships to attend GHC. “When people ask me if it was as good as I thought, I say ‘No, it was way better.’”

Computer science major Alejandra Gonzalez had that same sense of amazement at being surrounded by so many successful women in technology, such as Dr. Fei-Fei Li, Professor and Director of Stanford University’s AI Lab and Chief Scientist at Google Cloud AI/ML, and Melinda Gates, a former Microsoft product developer who is now co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “I couldn’t believe there are that many women interested in technology,” she said. Continue reading “CSULB Students Attend Grace Hopper Celebration of Female Technologists”

CECS Celebrates 2016 Grads

Computer Science and Computer Engineering graduates said goodbye to fellow students and faculty at Monday’s department graduation in ECS-105.

“You did it. You survived the ups and downs of student life. Now you’re ready to join the hottest field on the planet, which is computing,” said Chair Burkhard Englert, in congratulating the graduates.

“We are helping to solve the world’s problems” in established fields and in emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and the Internet of Things, said Englert, adding that “It is a great time to graduate with a degree in computer science or computer engineering.”

Continue reading “CECS Celebrates 2016 Grads”

Alumni Stresses Importance of Good Job Matches

bryan-kwom-snapBryan Kwon, a 2004 CSULB computer science graduate, was back on campus this week to share his experience in the job world with College of Engineering students. Kwan, now senior director of customer engagement at Santa Monica-based Akana, told attendees at the Professional Development Workshop that it’s important that your first job after college matches your interests.

When he graduated, Kwon went to work in information technology, but after three years became bored with backing up tape drives and taking care of routine technical issues. “I was really bored,” he said. “I really wanted a challenge.” Continue reading “Alumni Stresses Importance of Good Job Matches”

New Languages for CECS Students

python logoBeginning this semester, CSULB Computer Engineering and Computer Science students will have a chance to learn new programming languages. Python will replace Java in “Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving” (CECS 174) and C++ will replace Java in the new CECS 275 class for Computer Engineering majors. Computer Science majors will continue to learn Java, however, in their “Object-Oriented Programming and Data Structures” (CECS 274) class.

Python is replacing Java in the intro class because it’s easier to learn, said CECS Chair Burkhard Englert. According to an article in Communications of the ACM, Python is now the most popular language to use for teaching introductory programming, favored by nearly 70 percent of top U.S. universities. A general-purpose language with a simple code base, Python allows extensions to be added as necessary. Continue reading “New Languages for CECS Students”

CSULB to Host First Hackathon

beachhacks logoWhat could be better than working around the clock guzzling energy drinks while building new apps? For those who haven’t attended a hackathon, you’re in for a treat—CSULB is holding BeachHacks for 24 hours beginning Saturday, April 2. Registration is now open.

Most big engineering schools hold hackathons, where students compete to show off their technical skills—and endurance. Sponsors donate hardware, food, t-shirts, and giveaways to keep programmers pumped. Midnight snacks, raffles, and special challenges are part of the typical hackathon experience. Continue reading “CSULB to Host First Hackathon”

Engineering Major to Global CIO

jim-green-webCSULB Engineering alumni Jim Green had a pivotal moment after getting out of the Air Force and finding himself working as a mechanic in a McDonnell-Douglas factory. That moment came after Green met a 24-year-old aerospace engineer. “I had an epiphany that I didn’t want to spend my life working in a factory,” he said.

Green’s ticket out of that factory was a computer engineering and electrical engineering degree from CSULB. When he began his studies—first at Long Beach City College, where he spent two years—computers were only beginning to emerge. “I thought computers may be around for a while and I might be able to make a living with them,” he recalled. Continue reading “Engineering Major to Global CIO”