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Manasa Kalanadhabhatta Receives UbiComp Gaetano Borriello Outstanding Student Award 

Manasa Kalanadhabhatta
Manasa Kalanadhabhatta

Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS) sixth-year doctoral student, Manasa Kalanadhabhatta, has received the 2023 UbiComp Gaetano Borriello Outstanding Student Award in recognition of her significant contributions to the field of ubiquitous computing and wearable health monitoring. 

Kalanadhabhatta’s research journey has been characterized by a series of noteworthy contributions, including the development of "EarlyScreen," created in collaboration with Adam Grabell, associate professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at UMass Amherst, as well as Tauhidur Rahman, assistant professor in the Halıcıoğlu Data Science Institute at the University of California San Diego and CICS adjunct assistant professor. “EarlyScreen” offers a set of video-based diagnostic tools designed to identify psychopathological risk in young children. This approach offers a less invasive method for monitoring and understanding emotions in young children and addresses the need for early detection of psychological disorders like ADHD, temper loss, and other externalizing disorders. 

Her research findings have been published across multiple venues, including in Proceedings of the ACM on Interactive, Mobile, Wearable and Ubiquitous Technologies and at the Affective Computing and Intelligent Interaction Conference. Her interdisciplinary research has previously earned her the UMass Amherst Center for Research on Families Dissertation Award in 2023 for her work on bridging the gap between computing and pediatric mental healthcare, making her the only computer science student to have received the award. 

“Her ability to talk to a wider audience and assimilate ideas is excellent, which makes her a great fit for interdisciplinary research areas such as health and computing,” says Professor Deepak Ganesan. “She is often the student I reach out to for interdisciplinary collaborations that I initiate with clinical or behavioral collaborators.” 

The award was presented at UbiComp/ISWC (International Symposium on Wearable Computing) Conference, an international joint conference on pervasive and ubiquitous computing held October 8–12 in Cancún, Mexico, which focuses on all aspects of ubiquitous computing, including both the development of new technologies and the human experiences and social impacts that these technologies facilitate. 

"It was an honor to receive this recognition from the UbiComp community,” says Kalanadhabhatta. “The award committee specifically cited the challenging but highly impactful nature of our work on child mental health, and I hope to be able to continue working on such problems throughout my career."