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Two CSE PhD students receive the USF Dissertation Completion Fellowship

Two CSE PhD students receive the USF Dissertation Completion Fellowship


Two CSE PhD students, Minh Pham and Taufeeq Uddin, were selected by a university-level faculty committee to receive the Dissertation Completion Fellowship from the Office of Graduate Studies at the University of South Florida for the spring semester of 2024. The competitive fellowship is for full-time PhD students focusing exclusively on their dissertation; this year, ten such fellowships were awarded across the university. 

Minh Pham joined the CSE PhD program in Fall 2019 and is supervised by Professor Tu. His interests lie in high-performance computing and databases, specifically in next-generation sequencing (NGS) data analysis. NGS data analysis is used to sequence DNA, and has a plethora of uses in the medical field. For instance, it’s used to determine the right medication dosage or to assess pathogens in a cancer patient's cells, but it often takes up to two weeks to complete this process. Minh’s research aims to cut the calculation time down to a single day. 

“Our approach involves harnessing the immense computing capability of graphics processing units, which are exceptionally fast computing devices fueling the advancement of artificial intelligence. We leverage these GPUs to conduct data analysis for NGS data in a highly efficient manner by redesigning the current algorithms to be more suited on GPUs.” said Minh. Minh has published at multiple supercomputing conferences regarding memory management in parallel systems and GPU acceleration for NGS data analysis. 


Md (Taufeeq) Uddin joined the CSE PhD program in Fall 2018, and is supervised by Professor Shaun Canavan. His research focuses on computer vision, machine learning, and data science. Human behavior modeling with AI has a wealth of applications in medicine and psychology. This broad field of study incorporates insights from neuroscience and psychology with the real time monitoring capacities of wearables and computer vision. However, existing research underscores the need to consider the context of individual differences between people when considering subjective topics such as pain. One’s perception of pain can evolve over time by habit and familiarity, making precision medical measurements difficult without the adaptive technologies afforded by AI.

“This project addresses the pressing national need for human-centered AI technologies in healthcare and well-being, with a focus on mitigating the increasing cost of healthcare, limited access to care providers, and the growing aging population,” said Taufeeq. He has published and presented in ICPR, FG, ACII workshop, NeurIPS workshop.

The USF Dissertation Completion Fellowship is a high honor, recognizing the academic abilities of both Minh and Taufeeq. The fellowship includes a $9,000 stipend for spring semester 2024, up to 9 hours of graduate-level tuition and fees, and student health insurance for the spring semester, it paves the way for the last sprint of their graduate studies.

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