Faculty Recruiting Support CICS

Eight Graduating Seniors Honored for Outstanding Achievements

Eight graduating seniors have been chosen by the UMass Amherst Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS) to receive its 2022 Outstanding Undergraduate Achievement Awards, the college's highest honor given to undergraduates. This year's recipients, recognized for outstanding performance in the classroom and in the community, are informatics students Corinne Greene and Victoria Okoro, and computer science students Saicharan Dadireddy, Evan Fellman, Adi Geva, Adam Lechowicz, Vindhya Rachur, and Renos Zabounidis.

Saicharan DadireddySaicharan Dadireddy

Saicharan Dadireddy has served as an undergraduate course assistant (UCA) for COMPSCI 121: Introduction to Problem Solving with Computers and COMPSCI 187: Programming with Data Structures over three academic years and summer sessions, receiving the most Outstanding UCA awards in the history of the program. He has been cited for his consistent and invaluable contributions to the education and motivation of hundreds of students in these courses and was entrusted with responsibilities typically reserved for graduate teaching assistants, including managing other UCAs, authoring exam questions, and conducting workshops.

EEvan Fellmanvan Fellman

In addition to pursuing three degrees concurrently, Evan Fellman has contributed to a research group studying the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. One of Fellman’s contributions was to create a method for quantifying cortical shriveling by computing the fractal dimension of a 3-D surface, increasing the performance of the existing Alzheimer’s forecasting model. Fellman also worked on the tech team and taught two workshops at HackUMass 2019. After earning his bachelor's degrees at UMass, he plans to pursue a master’s of computational data science at Carnegie Mellon University.

Adi Geva Adi Geva 

During her time at UMass, Adi Geva served as a member of the CICS Recruiting and Outreach Committee (ROC), where she represented the college and conducted information sessions for prospective students. She was cited by the awards committee as a key member of the ROC team and an exemplary representative of the college who provided deep and useful knowledge to visitors. Geva will graduate with departmental honors and as a member of the Commonwealth Honors College.

Corinne GreeneCorinne Greene

Corinne Greene was cited as a recognized leader in making computing accessible and engaging, and her frequent representation of the college at diversity events. She served as a core Committee Against Racism and for Equity (CARE) member in its inaugural year, was co-chair of a CARE subcommittee, Humans of CICS, and served for three years as co-director of outreach for Hack(H)er413, the first all-female and non-binary hackathon in western Massachusetts. Greene has also served as an informatics peer advisor and undergraduate course assistant and will graduate from the Commonwealth Honors College.

Adam LechowiczAdam Lechowicz 

While pursuing both computer science and political science degrees at UMass, Adam Lechowicz served in a wide range of leadership positions, including as a student member of the Chancellor's Flexible Learning Task Force, where he worked with university administrators, staff, faculty, and students to plan for the university’s incorporation of flexible learning options. He has also served as a peer mentor, an undergraduate course assistant, a member of the UMass Racial Justice Coalition, and the CARE committee. He is cited for being a leader in student government and leading the revival of the UMass student yearbook, The Index, as its editor-in-chief. Lechowicz will graduate from the Commonwealth Honors College with departmental honors, and significant accomplishments in research.

Victoria OkoroVictoria Okoro

Victoria Okoro has been deeply involved in Hack(Her)413 since beginning her academic career at UMass. She has held multiple leadership roles within the organization, including as a member of the planning committee, as co-chair of external outreach, head of diversity and inclusion, and as the co-director. She is cited for her ability to attract, lead, and motivate a diverse group, for her sustained and lasting contributions as a student leader, and her advocacy for students from historically marginalized identities.

Vindhya RachurVindhya Rachur 

Vindhya Rachur was cited for her advocacy for equity and inclusion in computer science. She served as one of the leaders of Hack(H)er413 and as the co-president of the Women in Computer Science and Informatics (WICS) group. She recently facilitated Empow(HER)ment, a career advancement workshop for women in computer science. Her research has been described as being “innovative and critical in drawing attention to the experiences of women, particularly women of color, as they navigate racist and sexist automated processes.” Vindhya will graduate from the Commonwealth Honors College with departmental honors after completing her honors thesis, which tackles the issue of algorithmic biases in hiring through a feminist framework.

Renos Zabounidis Renos Zabounidis 

Renos Zabounidis was cited for outstanding academic performance and achievement in research, with several publications on machine learning and mobile computing. He was a Fall 2020 Rising Researcher Award winner, a 2021 Barry Goldwater Scholar, and served as an undergraduate course assistant (UCA), where he is recognized as contributing to broadening the role of UCAs and their selection criteria in an effort to create a more diverse and inclusive UCA team. This year, Zabounidis received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship that will fund his studies in the robotics doctoral program at Carnegie Mellon University after graduating from the Commonwealth Honors College.