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Speaker Series

Opportunities to Hear From Those at the Cutting Edge

In keeping with Valparaiso University’s strong tradition of service, success in life encompasses more than just career questions. Come explore how computing is changing life and society at the Computing and Humanity Speaker SeriesValparaiso University has hosted a series of speakers aimed at introducing both the local and University communities to the increasingly diverse impact of computing and computer-driven systems and solutions.

Beverly Schultz

Beverly Schultz “Recoding Expectations: A Woman’s Pioneering Journey in High Tech” Time: Wednesday, September 27, 2017
Location: Helge Center

Description: Schultz is the author of, “Skip the Typing Test – I’ll Manage the Software: One Woman’s Pioneering Journey in High Tech.” She received the President’s Award from Mitsubishi Electric; and her team created one of the first 3D chips that won 7 awards at COMDEX.

(In conjunction with Pathways to Purpose)

Amy Turner LaDow, BS (Math, ’86)

Amy Turner LaDow, BS (Math, ’86) “How Did They Know That? How Sharing on Facebook Leads to Consumer Profiling” Time: Wednesday, February 15, 2017, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Helge Center

Description: LaDow currently works in SAP’s Chief Customer Office helping clients get more value out of their enterprise software. She has nearly 30 years of leadership experience in and around enterprise software.You have likely agreed to let Facebook and other social media outlets use your public data to create advertisements specifically targeted to you. Sometimes the connection to an advertisement is obvious (think Facebook check-in coupons); other times they are able to correlate data to recommend products using sophisticated analytical skills (think a Facebook friend puts something in her amazon cart). Come hear Amy Turner LaDow talk about how they do that and how you can both protect yourself and make the influx of advertisements more relevant.

(In conjunction with Pathways to Purpose)

Beth Plale, Ph.D.

Beth Plale, Ph.D. “Data Mining Meets the Research Library” Time: Wednesday, February 8, 2017, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Helge Center

Description: Dr.Plale is a Full Professor of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University where she directs the Data To Insight Center and serves as Science Director of the Pervasive Technology Institute. Her research interests are in Big Data, long-term preservation and curation of scientific and scholarly data, large-scale data management, metadata and provenance, data trustworthiness and security, and data-driven cyberinfrastructure and cloud computing. Plale is deeply engaged in interdisciplinary research and education in earth and environmental sciences, digital humanities, health, and social sciences.

(In conjunction with Pathways to Purpose)

Raffaella Settimi-Woods, Ph.D.

Raffaella Settimi-Woods, Ph.D. “A data-driven approach to analyze housing markets” Time: Wednesday, November 15, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Helge Center

Description: The talk will present an application of data analytics techniques to urban studies. This analysis was conducted to help regional policy makers and housing stakeholders understand variation in local housing submarkets and assist them with the development of new regional housing initiatives. The study developed a housing market segmentation of the 7-county region surrounding Chicago and used both private and publically available data on housing stock and affordability, housing market activity, resident demographics, and socioeconomic indicators to identify communities with similar characteristics.

(In conjunction with Pathways to Purpose)

Tijana Milenkovic

Tijana Milenkovic, Ph.D. “Understanding complex (biologic, social, technological, …) systems via network science” Time: Wednesday, October 12, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Helge Center

Description: This talk will present recent computational approaches for comparing large, evolving large real-world networks in order to enable efficient extraction of functional information. We will discuss how the approaches can be applied to biological networks to address problems in biomedicine like identifying novel aging-related genes and drug targets. In addition, we will show that the same methods can be successfully used to study other network types as well, such as social networks.

(In conjunction with Pathways to Purpose)

L. Jean Camp, Ph.D.

L. Jean Camp, Ph.D. “Cyber War and, or, vs Cyber Crime” Time: Monday, February 8, 5:30 p.m
Location: Harre Union Ballroom C

Description: A discussion on the latest cyberattacks, mental models of security, and appropriate research methods given different models.

Katherine Connelly, Ph.D.

Katherine Connelly, Ph.D. “Proactive Health Informatics: Using Technology to Empower Patients” Time: Wednesday, March 30, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Neils Science Center, Room 234

Description: A discussion on how technology is changing the way we approach health care and our own health.

Leilah Lyons, Ph.D.

Leilah Lyons, Ph.D. “Collaborative Digital Museum Exhibit Design” Time: Wednesday, February 24, 5:30 p.m.
Location: Neils Science Center, Room 234

Description: Professor Lyons will give you a sense of a day in the life of a digital exhibits designer. She will interweave art, museum studies, and computer science in her descriptions of interdisciplinary efforts to build engaging exhibits and insightful research.

Our first speaker was Laura Puckett who spoke about: “The Vocation of Making” on November 17th. She shared with the audience about her journey since graduation and basics about how the technology industry operates, among other topics. You can read more about her visit and discussion in an article featured about her in the Torch!


The Computing and Humanity Speaker Series began as a joint outreach, recruiting, and education effort of the computing and information sciences department, the College of Engineering, and the electrical and computer engineering department. The first two years were partially funded by the National Science Foundation through the National Center for Women in Information & Technology. The series invites women working at the forefront of both computing research and industry to share their work and reflect on its impact to society.