School of Information May 2019 Commencement


– Welcome to the 2019 commencement for the UC Berkeley School of Information. I’m Anno Saxenian, I’m
the dean of the I school, and I’m really delighted to
welcome all of you here today to celebrate the class of 2019. First, bright light. First, a warm welcome to
all of you in the audience, the partners, families and
friends of today’s graduates. We want you all to know
how much we appreciate your contributions to the
success of these graduates. At the same time that
we honor their hard work and accomplishments, let’s give the family and friends a round of applause. (applause) I also want to acknowledge
the many people today Our graduates as well as
their families and friends who’ve traveled very long distances to join us, I’m sure this
is not a complete list but we’re aware of some of
you have traveled from as far as Brazil, India, Mexico,
Singapore, Spain and the UK as well, of course, as
many states across the U.S thank you and welcome to
Berkeley, rainy Berkeley. (laughing) (applause) I also want to welcome
the I School faculty who are our intellectual
core and foundation thank you to the faculty
as well as the staff who are all around us today
and quite literally keep everything running
smoothly in South Hall. We’re really fortunate to have
such an outstanding faculty and staff, they embody the
excellence that we aspire to at Berkeley, so let’s
give them a big hand too. (applause) I also want to welcome a
very special guest today the Chancellor of UC Berkeley Carol Christ. (applause) Carol has made time in her
busy schedule to join us for today’s celebration,
I think I’m not alone when saying that she’s my
role model and I suspect for many women on the Berkeley campus, I will say more about what
she’s done for Berkeley shortly. Last but not least, I’m
really delighted to welcome and recognize the I School
graduating class of 2019. There are 144 students graduating today and 119 of you are here today, welcome. (applause) I just break this down,
there are three of you who are earning Ph.D.s, 49 students from our Master of Information
Management and Systems or MIMS Program, and 67
students from our Master of Information and Data
Science or MIDS Program. Out of that 67 out of a
graduating cohort of 92, biggest cohort that we’ve
had yet in this program. Congratulations to every one
of you for your hard work and for the accomplishments
that bring you here today. We’re also proud that 1/3 of
our graduating class today are women, that includes 1/4
of our Data Science graduates, a 1/3 of our Ph.D.s, and half of our Information Management graduates. (applause) We still have a lot of
work to do and achieving our diversity goals but
I think this is a moment to appreciate a good performance
as a science STEM program. Well. (clearing voice) This is a really special
commencement for me because it’s the last
one as dean of the School of Information. It has been such a
privilege to serve as dean of the I School for the past 15 years. I’ve been fortunate to work
with incredibly talented and committed group of
students, faculty and staff and I’m so proud of what
we’ve accomplished together. This has been a
period of tremendous growth in the I School, to give
you a sense of the scale of change as recently
as 10 years ago, in 2009 I presided over a commencement
with a graduating class of 29 students, so today
we’re graduating 144 students. When I became dean, we
have one master’s degree and a very small Ph.D. program, today we have three
professional master’s degrees and a significantly larger Ph.D. program. We’ve also weathered a
major recession in 2008 and university budget cuts in all that one or two of the past 15 years. Change can be really,
disruptive and disorienting and I’m proud, I’m
really proud that despite the dislocations of this
growth, which has been very real for all of us, we’ve preserved our commitment to the school’s vision of educating professionals
and scholars to design and build technologies and to
do so with deep understanding of human users and of the
institutional and social factors that shape technology. The students who are graduating
today, all of you work with the latest tools and
technologies for machine learning to natural language processing,
to data visualization, to artificial intelligence. At the same time, they
understand that the shape of technology evolution is not
predetermined or inevitable. That technology doesn’t
have its own intent or by itself can’t change
the world but rather that it must be developed
with care and deliberation because it can be a
very powerful amplifier whether for good or for ill. They also recognize that
technological change I should say, is not
equivalent to human progress. Progress requires careful
thought about our values and our priorities, about
our connections to others into our natural environment
and the commitment to serve not just our own
needs but the needs of others including future generations. I see this commitment every
day at the I School and I’m so proud of it. Our students are prepared
to ask what is information or is information
processing the best metaphor for understanding the human mind? They understand that there’s
no such thing as raw data that there are always
people making choices about how the data is collected how it’s aggregated and
how it’s classified. They think about how to
embed values such as privacy into the technologies they
design rather than trying to fix them after the fact,
they fight for transparency and legibility in the algorithms
that are being deployed willy nilly throughout society today and they’re developing
ways to detect and prevent the risks and harms from misinformation, surveillance and cyber theft. In short, they care about
understanding and addressing the needs of users, especially
those with disabilities without access to resources
or political voice those left behind as much as
they care about optimizing for any things like
processing speed and power or for ad revenues more than I should say. You’ll see as we go
forward in the ceremony in the work that we celebrate today that these graduates really do
embody the core commitments of the I School, the
commitment to being sensitive both to users and to history, social and institutional context in
which technology is deployed. These students, all of you, you
give me hope for the future. You’re the kind of person
goals that we need to develop our collective future,
you’re thinking about what we need as a society not
just what we’ll click on you’re helping us to diversify
the technology workforce and challenge it’s deep seated
biases, you will question the misuse of data and the
adoption of black box algorithms. And you will help us to develop policy that helps preserve our
democratic commitments. I’m really regularly and have
been regularly blown away by the breadth of the
vision and the commitments that you put into the projects
that you present to us in your classes, in your
capstone projects, in some of the projects that we
will give awards to today. So you are graduates
will be going on to jobs in the private sector, the
public sector, nonprofits some of you will be working in jobs that directly address
these pressing issues, issues of privacy, information security, technology policy, some will do research on the future of technology and democracy or big data and development. The majority of you will be
working in important jobs as product managers, user
experience designers, data scientist, software
engineers, consultants but all of you will bring
the values and commitments that you gained at the I School and that’s really the key. There are now 1400, close to 1400 I School alumni around the world. One of the most gratifying experiences of my tenure has been watching
the I School alumni, grow the community and
return to us to Berkeley year after year, often to
recruit the next generation of I School graduates, this
is a very powerful network and I urge you to take
advantage of it and join it and sustain the commitments
and relationships that you’ve built here and spread them well beyond for California. So to the graduating class of 2019, I am so grateful for the
support you’ve given me and one another, I’m
optimistic about the future because you are a reflection
of the values that have given the I School such
a focus and direction. I’m also very optimistic about the future of the I School, which
will be in the capable hands with my colleague, John
Chuang and I’m delighted that I’ll be returning to
join the I School faculty after a year of sabbatical,
so thank you all. (applause) It gives me real pleasure now to announce our 2019 commencement
speaker, Geoffrey Nunberg Nunberg is a linguist, a
researcher and currently an adjunct full professor at
the School of Information. Prior to coming to Berkeley, he served as a principal scientist
at Xerox Palo Alto where he worked on the development
of linguistic technologies. He also has also taught at
UCLA, the University of Rome, the University of Naples
and Stanford University. Nunberg has written on
a wide range of topics on semantics and pragmatics,
text classification, normative grammar,
written language structure and the social and political, social and cultural implications
of digital technologies. Most recently, he’s written about the use of taboo language like
slurs and vulgarities. He’s written many books
about language including the way we talk now, Going Nucular which was named one of the
best 10 best nonfiction books of 2004 by Amazon.com and
one of the 10 best books of the year by San Jose
Mercury, his 2006 book with talking right how
conservatives turns liberalism into a tax raising, latte,
drinking, sushi eating, Volvo driving, New York
Times, reading body piercing, Hollywood loving, left wing freak show. (laughing) Was named one of the best 10 best books of the year by the Washington Monthly. His 2009 book, The Years
of Talking Dangerously was selected as a notable Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle
and his most recent book Ascent of The A Word was released in 2012 and a colleague of ours
at Stanford, described it as a satisfying blend of great scholarship with and splendid logic.
I think as you know when you hear from him
today that reflects all of Geoff’s work, he has well known to many of us first regular and
very entertaining features on language on the NPR program, fresh air and last but definitely not least, Geoff is a wonderful colleague and a member of the I School community he teaches two outstanding
courses in the I School both with Paul Duguid
an undergraduate course on the history of information,
undergraduate class on concepts of information, please join me in warmly welcome Geoffrey Nunberg. (applause) – Thank you, don’t we all look fly? (laughing) (coughing) I’m very honored to be asked to do this I’ve been privileged to be
associated with the I School for over 15 years from
around the time Anno took over as dean as you no doubt know already you’re gonna get called
on a lot to explain to people what a school of information is. (laughing) So I want to share with you
my take about what makes this place exceptional and
how that makes you exceptional not just for your benefit
but for the benefit of all the family and friends and partners who supported you, of
course they already know you’re exceptional but I want them to know what this place had to do with that. (laughing) And I’ll really be just enlarging on the remarks that Anno
made, if you’re looking for a concise picture of what the School of Information about
and how it got that way you might check out the
video of a talk that Anno gave a couple of weeks ago
to recount her 15 year tenure as dean, actually my only
quibble with the talk is that it wasn’t sufficiently immodest. When Anno took on the deanship,
this was a smaller school where there was just
beginning to spread its wings and she had a huge role not
just an expanding the programs but when in doubt seeing it
with the two features that to my mind make it
exceptional, first broadening the faculty to include
people doing ethnography, sociology, public policy,
history, linguistics and so forth and second
by creating the culture of community, which is what alumni are always pointing to
when you ask them what the most memorable
feature of this place was. Now, I tend to see the world
through the lens of language which I’ll be making a few
points here about words. For starters, I’m never
sure how to describe our program are we interdisciplinary,
cross-disciplinary, trans-disciplinary and
multi-disciplinary or what I had the idea once of
describing the school is diversiplenary but that was not my greatest creation, there’s
this new management buzzword, Cross Silo, the next time
somebody asks you what the I School it’s about they say we do a lot of Cross Silo thinking. (laughing) For my part, when people
ask me that question I say, well, we’re sort of eclectic
and leave it at that. (laughing) Whether you call it eclecticism
or interdisciplinary or whatever, the important
thing to understand is that it’s intrinsic to what we do. A geologists can team up with
people from other disciplines but it’s not necessary,
there’s nothing in the nature of rock that requires you to think about it from different points of view. But information isn’t
something you can study through a single window, it lives two
lives, it has a material life it accumulates on servers
and networks and software and databases, on cell phones
and surveillance cameras and an MRI and it survives
in printed documents that still have cultural
weight, like books and ballots and parking tickets, oh, and diplomas. (laughing) You take it, you would not
want to come up here and have on a hand to a USB drive
with a PDF of your degree. (laughing) Maybe next year’s Master’s Project. (laughing) But information also has
a social life to quote the title of a classic
book by John Seely Brown and Paul Duguid which I
know many of you have read. Governments and corporations sweep it up, kids texted furtively in the classroom, democracies die without it. So any School of Information
is going to be anchored in to disciplinary polls,
they’re the formal disciplines that study the way information
is stored, processed and transmitted CS statistics,
data science and so on. And there are the disciplines
that touch the context where information takes on meaning, the culture, the market, public life. People usually come to the
I School with a background in one or the other of
these polls but the idea is to make everybody
kind of by dialectical you wanted students to
lose their native accents so to speak, so you can tell
by listening to somebody what their undergraduate
major was, sip of water. But the relation between
those poles is binary but not quite symmetrical. The transit that transitions
easier in one direction than another, let me tell you a story I heard from Brian Smith,
a computer scientist and philosopher, who’s now
at the University of Toronto. Back in the 1960s, Brian
was an undergraduate at Oberlin majoring in
physics but he was also a gifted amateur musician
and he got very interested in computer generated music which was then in its formative stages. Now, Oberlin also has a
famous music conservatory and after a while the
composition students sort of took over the computer music project, there were two reasons
for that Brian says, on the one hand, the software just became more versatile and accessible. And then to as Brian
says, it turns out to be a lot harder to turn a
geek into a musician than to turn a musician into a geek. (laughing) Brian tells me that started
back in the 1980s when we were colleagues at the Xerox
Palo Alto Research Center the legendary Xerox PARC is the press is always referring to. John Seely Brown was
running PARC back then and he was bringing in
social scientists and artists and philosophers and people
like Paul Duguid and me. The idea being that if
you understood the context and aesthetics of technology
use that understanding would somehow infuse
the technology itself. I think of what Henri Matisse
once said: a colorist makes his presence known in a charcoal sketch. That idea did get through
to a lot of technologists at PARC but it wasn’t an easy sell. One of the hardest things in
the world is to recognize rigor in disciplines that are more
discursive or subjective than your own, wherever you’re starting from mathematical logicians
think philosophers of logic are woolly headed; the
psychopharmacologists roll their eyes at the psychoanalyst;
and it takes a huge leap of faith for a hard nosed coder
to imagine that ethnography or philosophical ethics could be anything more than just airy fairy gobbledygook. So most people, most tech
people didn’t get why PARC was doing that and in
fact, even 15 years later when the social life of
information was published a lot of people took the
title to be making just a silly claim, but that title doesn’t seem so productive anymore,
that the new understanding was summed up very nicely by Doug Kurty was another former PARC
colleague who went on to create the Hadoop framework,
which a lot of you know as he put it, the biggest
problems of technology today are not technical and
that’s what gives rise to pervasive algorithm
anxieties, I call it. 25 years ago, algorithm
was a word you only ran into in the technical
literature and it just referred to a recipe for getting an optimal result, like alphabetizing a list of names or managing machine memory or
whatever, now the media are full of stories about algorithms,
usually to point out how biased and fallible they are. I have a whole file of headlines like how recommendation
algorithms run the world and the violence of the
algorithms and when I saw in the New York Times
a couple of months ago the algorithmification
of human experience, algorithmification,
there’s an expression that deserves to die horribly. (laughing) Ideally in a head on collision with cross silo thinking. (laughing) So people in tech are
saying, we really have to do something about all
these problems of a bias and abuse and privacy and misinformation and toxic content and so on. Engineers being engineers,
their first instinct is to see these as
essentially technical problems and keep throwing more cycles at them. And these are very hard
AI problems and it’s clear that the algorithms lead a
lot need a lot more tuning why should I trust Facebook
to get hate speech right? When they have other
algorithms that are telling me that my interest include beauty pageants the band Journey and the
professional wrestling Hall of Fame, true. (laughing) But tech people tend to struggle more with the conceptual issues, how
do you define the problem and what would an optimal
solution look like? They rarely give any sign
of having learned the lesson that Brian learned that
overland in the 60s that PARC was evangelizing for in the
80s or that the I School has been teaching for several decades now and engineers being engineers once again their instinct here is
to attack these questions as pure deductive
exercises, hey, we’re smart we can just reason this
out, how hard could it be? Take information and propaganda,
now this is the topic I’ve worked on, in fact I
just finished an article on the history of those notions
for a forthcoming companion to the history of information that Princeton University Press is doing. So I was particularly
interested in a slick video that Facebook put out last
year about its efforts to fight fake news, at one
point, the Data Manager for newsfeed integrity is
defining these notions. So he draws a Venn
diagram on the whiteboard that partitions the whole
space of digital content, according to two features,
everything anybody ever says is either true or false and
either deceptive or sincere so up here on the left,
this quadrant is the true but deceptive place where propaganda lives and down here in the false
and deceptive quadrant is where fake news lives
and here on the other side is the false but sincere
stuff with just being wrong and so on and I’m thinking, the city you’re trying to police has a
lot more precincts than that. (laughing) He’s clearly well intentioned but he seems to have no idea how many
terabytes of philosophy and history and sociology
have been dedicated to mapping the landscape
of public discourse. It’s basically, what I think
I was dorm room epistemology the kind of thing you come up in these Red Bull-fueled
dorm room, bull sessions when you’re when you’re in college. The problem here is
that you don’t see that you’re putting yourself at
the mercy of ordinary language I mean, the ordinary language,
the everyday vocabulary that we use to talk about these things and the everyday assumptions
that pass for common sense which are both saturated
with hidden ideology and cultural preconceptions. As the philosopher Paul de
Man said, there’s nothing more theoretical than the
language of the street. These dorm room theories are
pervasive in the tech world and Jenna Burrell and Elisa
Oreglia of the I School have written about the myths
of what you could call, Dorm Room Theories of
Development, like the idea you can just sprinkle these
rural low income populations with mobile phones and an efficient market will sprout up like geraniums or think of the people at the I
School here who are concerned about the fairness of hiring
algorithms and they have to contend with the sorts
of dorm room theories about the tech gender
gap that were exemplified in the screen that that
Google engineer posted a couple of years ago that
happened at everybody up in the arms or if you’ve been
watching the NBA playoffs which I assume people been
doing, you may have seen the one minute television ad
that Apple has been running to tell the privacy
features of the new iPhone it’s a stream of about 25 brief images that are meant to connote
privacy in one way or another a teenager slamming
the door to her bedroom to a room with keep out written on it a guy in a public bathroom
walking down to the last urinal so he isn’t near anybody
else, somebody shredding a document, drawing the blinds,
and so on. And then the text comes on
the screen, if privacy matters in your life, it should matter
to the phone your life is on. Now to my mind, the privacy
features I’m looking for in a cell phone are not
quite the same as the ones I want to find in a public bathroom. (laughing) So I sent a link to that
ad to Deirdre Mulligan and asked her just how
many conceptions of privacy it was evoking, she came
up with half a dozen or so, privacy as property, privacy
as boundary negotiation, privacy as freedom from
an intrusion and so on I love being in a place
where I have colleagues like Deirdre I can call on. Now of course, this is just
Apple’s ad agency trying to whip up a souffle of
feelings to sell a phone. But it gives you a sense
of what a tangled set of notions the word privacy
evokes in our conversations about technology and about
the challenges that people like Deirdre and Chris
Hoofnagle face when they try to operationalize or codify codified them. This sort of thinking
is depressingly endemic in the tech world but
my sense is that most of the students who come
out of the I School are more or less inoculated against it. When you look at the work
our students are doing at whatever level,
master’s, MIDS, MICS, whatever you usually pick up a much
more nuanced sense of both the social context and
the ethical implications of the project, in fact
Brian Smith was wrong about geeks and musicians,
coders and designers and data analysts don’t have to become full feathered
ethnography or ethicist or whatever, they just have
to know what it would be like to be one of those things. They have to realize that
these problems are difficult and not intuitive, they might call for specialized expertise
or they might require the capacity to step
back and extract yourself from the everyday language
and preconceptions that cloud the way you see the world. Whatever work you wind
up doing, your capacity for that kind of insight is
going to confer huge benefits for your organization,
for society and by the by for you, it’s a competitive
advantage in your career that’s more important
than your technical skills or just raw intelligence
which is something that young people in
particular tend to put pretty much weight on, Google
job interviewers used to be famous for posting
these idiotic brain teasers like estimate how many tennis
balls can fit in an airplane. I can’t imagine wanting
to work with the person who asked that question or the person who thought it had an answer. (laughing) Now, if I were interviewing
job candidates for Google or Facebook, I might
ask them something like how would you define privacy or fairness or merit or trust or whatever
and pulling words out of recent master’s projects? My guess is that the
first nine people I asked about any of those words,
would come up with more or less the same answer and
it would always be wrong. The 10th would say something like oh boy, that’s really complicated, can I get back to you on that one? That’s the person I’d
want to talk to and I like to think that person would
be you, so congratulations. If the past is any guide,
most of you will go on to successful and fulfilling careers and we’d like to hear
about your progress because the success of our alumni,
redounds to the reputation of their alma mater, in that
connection let me recall the alma mater is Latin
for nurturing mother. So let me close with a four
words that every mother says to her offspring as they
go out to make their way in the world: “Don’t forget to write.” (laughing) Thank you. (applause) – Well, I couldn’t be more
delighted now to introduce our special guest today,
Chancellor Carol Christ. Carol is the 11th
chancellor of the University of California Berkeley, she’s also the first woman to hold that position. She is a celebrated scholar
of Victorian literature and she’s also well known
as an advocate for quality, accessible public higher
education, a proponent of the value of a broad
education in the Liberal Arts and Sciences, a champion of women’s issues and diversity on college campuses. And as I said before, she’s a
role model and an inspiration to women faculty and administrators
on the Berkeley campus and beyond and I’ll just say a
few words about her biography because she can speak for herself. She spent more than three
decades as a professor and senior administrator here
and then she became president of Smith College which
she ran for 10 years. And now Berkeley is
benefiting from the experience that she gained both at
Berkeley previously and it Smith as she has returned here
to direct the Center for Studies of Higher Education was appointed Interim Executive
Vice Chancellor and Provost and then became the
Chancellor in March 2017. Thank you Carol for joining us today and for what you’ve done for Berkeley. (applause) – Thank you Dean Saxenian
and for the opportunity to address this year’s graduating class. First, I’d like to echo
the many congratulations you for today, you all have completed, ah, just completed demanding
course of study at one of the nation’s leading
information schools and I want to acknowledge your diligence, your perseverance and your resilience. You’ve undoubtedly made
sacrifices, you’ve dedicated days and nights and weekends to your academics. Perhaps you juggled school
alongside a full time job or completed your coursework
while you were starting a family. And now at the
end of your studies here you’re likely experiencing
a mix of relief, elation, wonder, and apprehension. But in addition to all
that I hope you also have a keen sense of accomplishment. I’ve been speaking at a handful
of commencement ceremonies this spring and one of the
things that’s been on my mind as I watched students
graduate, is the privilege and responsibility that
comes with obtaining a Berkeley degree. I have now no doubt that
you armed with your master’s and doctorates from our information school are apt to thrive in the information age. You’ve learned how to build and interpret statistical
models, how to think critically about data, how to use
Python and TensorFlow and Spark and all sorts of
other tools of your trade. You’re at the forefront
of how people interact with information and
technology, and information and technology are embedded in so so much of the modern human experience.
You’re in high demand by startups, established
companies, universities, think tanks, and governments. In short, through your
experience and your studies you’ve gained great power.
And in a bit of wisdom that is been attributed
sometimes to Voltaire and sometimes to Spider-Man,
with great power comes great responsibility. Given your skills,
Knowledge, and credentials you will be put in positions
of leadership that will have you shaping the
relationship between humans and information in society
and you will need to draw on everything you’ve
learned and experienced. For as we’ve seen over the last few years, this relationship is critical, contentious, and constantly changing.
How can we reinvent, democratic decision making in a world of pervasive connectivity
and technologically-enabled concentration of power and
wealth? what kind of privacy are we owed in digital
environments? How should we form train, raise, and
deploy intelligence systems? How will assistive technologies,
cognitive technologies, and other human-machine interfaces alter our lives and our very humanity? The I School’s human-centric
approach to information and data science education has, I think, made you the kind of
leaders we need to take on these questions, and I
know you’re up to the task because you already have.
Just looking through some of your capstone final projects, shows your careful attention
to issues that matter. You looked at using
natural language processing to stop hospital billing errors. You built a communication assistant for
people with speech disorders. You examined the impact of
polling place closures on voter turnout. You created a system to detect rumors spreading
on Twitter. You developed a tool to help police
deploy resources effectively and without discrimination
bias. You built systems to improve the enrollment
process of public schools in the Bay Area. I could go on and on. This kind of creative
thoughtful problem solving, infused with an understanding
of people’s needs and attention to issues
of justice inequality, is exactly what you will need to solve the great intractable
problems of our time. In 1966, Robert Kennedy gave a speech at the Greek Theatre here
in Berkeley and I’ll quote his words. “All of us have
the right to dissipate our energies and our talents
in any way that we wish, but those who are serious about the future have the obligation to
direct their energies and their talents toward
concrete objectives consistent with the ideals that they
profess. In your hands not with presidents or
other leaders is the future of your world and the best fulfillment of the qualities of your own spirit.” Thank you and now in the
few minutes I have left I also want to take this
opportunity to thank a person who has been so pivotal
in the life of the School of Information for much
of its 24 year history and that person is your
Dean Anno Saxenian. As you likely know, Anno
will step down this summer and return to a faculty position after having served as the
leader of the I School for three terms, or a decade and a half. It would be difficult to
overstate the influence that she’s had in her time here. Upon taking up the deanship,
she led efforts to refocus the school and its academics as well as give it a new name and a new mission. She then led the school through a period of remarkable growth, more
than doubling the size of its faculty, and establishing
its first faculty chair, doubling the size of its
Ph.D. program and introducing an array of fellowships to
support graduate students. She spearheaded the creation of two professional
online master’s programs, MIDS and the Master of
Information and Cybersecurity, which have allowed the school to expand its reach and impact tremendously. While there were fewer
than 100 students enrolled when Anno began her tenure,
today the school enrolls more than 700 across its programs. In addition to this growth, Anno also helped establish the I School’s two interdisciplinary
research centers, the Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity
and the Center for Technology, Society and Policy. She launched the annual
DataEDGE conference which draws leading scholars
and data science professionals to campus to assess the
implications of the data revolution on every aspect of our lives. Beyond all this, Anno
has been an incredibly important role model as one
of the first women deans on the UC Berkeley campus,
and has led an array of I School initiatives
that aim to increase the number of students
and faculty from backgrounds historically
underrepresented in tech. Her success has been tremendous. This coming fall half of
I School Ph.D. students will be women. MIMS
enrolls more than 50% women and has done so since this past fall. MIDS has gone from 20%
women to 30% in four years and women comprise 38% of
the I School faculty a fair amount higher
than the campus’s 31%. Anno’s leadership as well
as her counsel and wisdom and friendship will be sorely missed. I’m grateful that we will continue to have her on campus as a faculty member as a faculty member, as
the I School enters its latest chapter as part of the Division of Data Science and Information. Congratulations to all our
graduates, please join me in extending my deep
gratitude to Anno for all that she has done for our
campus and for shepherding the I School into an exciting new era. (applause) (laughing) (applause) – Thank you. (applause) Thank you so much thank you. As I said, it’s been I’m
just embarrassed, so. (laughing) It’s been such a rewarding part of my life I will always remember all of you for what we’ve done
together, so thank you, thank you Carol and thank you Geoff. Now, we’ve been speaking about
our students for a long time but they’re here today and
they can speak for themselves. So I’d like to start with the first of our three students speakers
and invite Soravis Prakkamakul to come up and speak
for the MIMS students. (applause) (paper rustling) – First of all, I appreciate my classmate for taking the risk of
having me as a speaker. (laughing) (applause) My name is Soravis and
I’d like to start off by thanking our Dean Anno,
our dedicated faculty the whole I School community
and our esteemed guests. It’s such an honor to be here
in front of you this morning. On behalf of MIMS ’19,
thanks to all the staff and Career Services for
their support and guidance and sorry, we’ll make sure to submit our student satisfaction
survey form in time. (laughing) So to the family members of MIMS students who are here today or otherwise, thank you for your patience, your hidden
labor of keeping us sane throughout the program shall
not go and acknowledged. For all of those who
are expecting some kind of machine generated speech for
me, I’m sorry to disappoint. (laughing) In fact I tried, I ran a recurrent neural network text generator
trained by past MIMS speeches and the only legible thing
that it could generate is I quote, “you all are information.” (laughing) And it’s time, my fellow class of 2019. What a ride, thanks for
always staying positive even upon receiving emails with a subject, thank you for applying. (laughing) Thanks for always signing up to be each other’s pilot testers, half
of I School projects wouldn’t have succeeded
without all of your consent. And also, thanks for deep hanging out and I really enjoyed the
deep conversations we had not only because it’s
fun but because anything that begins with the word deep, sounds much more intelligent these days. (laughing) And to the class of
2020, you’re a cool bunch to hang out with and it’s
going to be sad to leave you. There’s something special
about 2020, it’s often the year that some kind of organization of curated visions promise to come true whether it’s zero ways, zero
emissions, zero irrelevant, slack messages on #announcements-global. (laughing) So if 2020 is a milestone
for positive change, 2019 is like one of those
nights before the deadline and it’s time that we realized
that we might not be able to make it in time, so I do
have high hopes for you all ’20s. At this point in speech,
I should turn to address the identity crisis that
every MIMS graduate faced which is, what does it
mean to hold a master’s in Information Management and Systems? Instead of joking about
recruiters reaction upon seeing a degree on a resume, I choose to take a different path through
fiction and speculation. Throughout time, as we have
been called the School of Librarianship, School of
Library and Information Studies and then today the I School. Extrapolating on this
trend, it would not be such a surprise that someday,
we might come up with a different name, so please
bear with my fan fiction of the future of I School. What if some day we’re called School of Computational Empathy, as well as the world’s need computer
science, it needs us to make sure empathy is
built into the machines. And for those of us who
are more design inclined, empathy is already at
the heart of our practice and for those of us who
are more analytical minded what is the act of data crunching anyway if not a way to understand someone who is not like us in a computational way? You might wonder what’s
the point of bringing up fiction just now.
Commencement is a great chance to talk about the future but
what types of future really? Is it the probable, plausible,
or preferable future? And without fiction it’s
often hard to imagine a future that’s different
from where we’re heading. So let’s imagine what kind of world could the School of computational empathy be in. Would it be a world where
Venmo transactions are not public by default,
a world where all websites have HTTPS, a world
where web developers have to testify in front of
Congress for overusing cookies. A world where Alexa insists that. – [Woman] Your data stays on your device. (laughing) – A world where there is
truth serum to fake news or a world where your
data is licensed under the public Commons and the
public domain or a world where there is really diversity in tech. I don’t really have an
answer but I do believe in our view, graduates,
let’s go out and shape a future that does not
sound like an episode of Black Mirror, thank
you and congratulations. (applause) – Thanks so much Soravis. Now I’d like to invite
our MIDS student speaker, Christina Papadimitriou. (applause) – Thank you Dean Saxenian, good morning. My name is Christina
Papadimitriou and I’m so honored to be here right now representing
the Master of Information and Data Science graduating
class of spring 2019. (applause) Congratulations to my
fellow graduates, we did it. Thank you to everyone for
traveling from all over the country and the world to join us today in celebrating our accomplishments. Thank you to Dean Anno
Saxenian for her leadership and for launching and
growing the MIDS program. Thank you to Siu Yung and
the entire staff at the School of Information for guiding
us and helping us succeed. Thank you to our amazing
faculty for being our mentors and for giving us so
much invaluable knowledge and thank you to our families and friends for their unconditional love and support, we couldn’t have done it without you. (applause) I want to start by giving
our families and friends an insight into the MIDS program. MIDS is an online degree in
data science but it is not what you would typically
expect of an online program. We meet with video and
audio in small classrooms and we engage in interesting
discussions; we code together. We use whiteboard screens
to draw math formulas or really confusing
matrix shapes, if you took 266, you know what I’m talking about, we go to office hours,
we have study sessions, group project meetings
and sometimes we engage in long conversations on
Slack and we just talk about life or any other
topic of common interest. MIDS students are really
brave and impressive and I can prove it to you. Please raise your hand if you had a baby or have been raising
kids during this program. (applause) Now, raise your hand if you had a full or part-time job while
completing this degree. (applause) Now raise it if you moved
to a different apartment, house, or city in the middle of a semester. (applause) And lastly, raise your
hand if you attended class from 1 to 6:00 a.m because of the time difference in your country. (applause) If that’s not fashioned for
knowledge than what is? You should be proud of yourself for taking on this challenge and
reaching the finish line. Now I want to talk
about what distinguishes this program the most,
it is its incredible, vibrant and active community. One of my favorite quotes
is, if you want to go fast, go alone, if you want
to go far go together. In MIDS everyone is so
passionate and engaged on Slack and in the classroom,
we learn from each other and sometimes we fail
together, but in the end we always succeed because we
stand by and help each other. How many times has this
happened to you during the MIDS program: you’re
stuck on a homework problem on one line of code and it
feels nearly impossible to solve and then you decide to ask
for help from a classmate and they immediately respond
and they make it their goal to help you solve your
problem, that’s what MIDS is all about and that’s how
we’ve gone to this finish line. We did it because we work
together and I’m so thankful to each and every one
of you for everything that you taught me and even
if we forget everything that we learned in this
degree, which we hopefully won’t the friendships that we have
formed will last a lifetime. Now I want to share with you
a piece of advice that Joyce Shen my capstone instructor
shared with us during the last class she said,
stop, reflect and continue. So let’s take a moment to stop and reflect on what we have learned and
accomplish during this program. Let’s go back to our very
first class where we started. Some of us didn’t know
how to code in Python or how to use GitHub and
had no idea what to look for when exploring like large datasets. Today, we know how to build
data pipelines, machine learning and statistical models, field experiments, natural language processing algorithms, hybrid neural networks, how to deal with really big data sets and how to build a product from start to finish. So how do we continue from now on? This is a very exciting
time to be data scientists data scientists are making
some of the biggest advances in our society, from image
and speech recognition to recommender systems, machine
translation and many others. Our profession is instrumental
in driving change and it is so critically
important to do this work with an ethical responsibility
towards our communities to do it with care and
empathy and to be fair because there are people
behind the data sets. I also want to encourage
you to dare greatly and get out of your comfort zones. Socrates one said, the
only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing, one should we be willing to change his or her
us to learn and unlearn and only then they will
be truly successful. Data Science is challenging
the way things are done in some of the largest
organizations today. I want to urge you to challenge
the way things are done in your organization and
make people uncomfortable because we need to be uncomfortable first in order to be comfortable with change. But data science is not the
only movement but it’s changing the world right now,
there are other really big and important movements,
Black Lives Matter, Me Too, Trans Lives Matter. These are movements that I hope
will change our communities and make the world a better place. As we go out into the
world, we should amplify each other’s voices, demands seats
for women, people of color and
all marginalized people at every table where decisions are made. Lastly, let’s leave this place united and stay connected years
from now, let’s work together as a group of alumni as
we progress in our careers to forge a better future, thank you. (applause) – And last but not least, I’d
like to invite Elaine Sedenberg to speak for the Ph.D. students. (applause) – Hello fellow graduate,
today we celebrate obtaining a degree from one of the top universities in the entire world, congratulations. Before getting to the
pomp and circumstances of our collective
achievements, I too would like to take a moment to celebrate
and acknowledge Anno as she ends her tenure as our dean. Anno made an academic career
studying entrepreneurs and innovation, so it is
hardly surprising she herself, exhibits these same qualities
and brought them here to the I School academic community. We have been so lucky to have
her, thank you so much Anno. (applause) Today I’m gonna reflect on two themes, perseverance, and gratitude. Completing a Ph.D. is akin
to running a marathon except you run one after
another, after another for five or six years and
then you reach a mountain and then you climb that.
Every Ph.D. journey is different but one thing all Ph.D.s have
in common is that you learn to rapidly adapt to challenges both unexpected and perfunctory. I imagine similar to
what you all face during your master’s except a bit more protracted. We become expert problem
solvers and adapters my colleagues here with
me today, Raza and Neil are no exceptions, they
changed schools midway through and joined our community in 2016. This sudden change of path
undoubtedly came with challenges but we were so lucky to
have them come here with us. Every Ph.D. in this room
knows how individually hard it is to complete this journey, this is the tacit understanding
that all Ph.D.s share. One thing I learned throughout
this very long process is an unintuitive
truth, often when you feel your most helpless and disenfranchised you are actually your most powerful self. This is true both for
us personally as well as when we gaze around
the world and identify the many inequalities and
injustices before us. I believe there is a
special kind of power that can only come from feeling
like we’ve hit rock bottom. It is only from this
place that we can catalyze the type of real change
in our lives in society that comes with great risk
and persistent action. In these times, it’s hard
to know where to start. One of my favorite writers
once wrote that sometimes all you know is a resounding not this. Beginning with this simple acknowledgement is the own sometimes is the
only thing that you know for sure is that, the
status quo is unacceptable it is a surprisingly formidable
yet simple place to begin. As I Schoolers we study and
confront difficult truths about our world, the
collision between technology, society and the people behind the data. These tussles come with great
consequences, those from the past some on this morning’s
New York Times and some that we see manifesting in our future. We hold interdisciplinary
skills and deep expertise unmatched by our colleagues
in other disciplines. We are trained to see and
address the great promise and perils of technology, this is why we as Berkeley I Schoolers are exactly what the world needs right now, even if the only place
to begin is a not this. This is a process we will
continually cycle through for the rest of our lives
and careers and I stand before you today knowing
every single person in this audience is
capable and empowered to do the job before us, even
when you can’t help but feel powerless below the
magnitude of the circumstances. We are all brave enough to
face the challenges ahead and walking across the stage
today is evidence enough. To get to this point, we’ve
all made individual sacrifices and taken risks, our MIDS
students often worked while completing their
degrees online and our MIMS made big life adjustments to
return to graduate school. We should be tremendously
proud of ourselves but also none of us are here alone.
(I knew this part would get me!) Looking around this audience,
I see proud families, partners, friends and colleagues. Looking into our respective
paths, I see a network of educators and mentors
starting in our childhoods who made this path possible
for each of us many years ago. During the hardest moments of this Ph.D., one of the most humbling
and powerful realizations was when I paused long
enough to look around me and recognize who was
still in my life even when it wasn’t particularly
glamorous or Instagramable. This is a gift from our challenging times and inevitably when we
stumble into our next life transition or slide back into places where we feel vulnerable and
lost, look around you. The people there may not always
be the people you expected but take a moment to appreciate
the persistent helpers in your life. There are
several people in this audience and on this stage without
whom I wouldn’t be standing before you today, you all know who you are and I am so deeply thankful
each of you is in my life. This has been quite an
adventure as a Golden Bear and I know we will all take
a little piece of Berkeley with us wherever we go, thank
you and congratulations. (applause) Now I would like to
invite the co-presidents of the Information Management
Student Association who’ll preside over the IMSA awards, Meena Kaushik and Daniel Rincon. (applause) – Okay, so apparently we’re
doing this, like, Oscar-style, so. (laughing) But before we announce the
awards on behalf of the class of 2020 I just want to
thank you guys, 19s. So you’ve been great, what
feeling us making us feel welcome to the program, helping
us go through the journey so thank you very much and
congratulations to you again. (applause) So the awards have been voted by MIMS and Ph.D. students. So I’ll go ahead and read the first award which is distinguished faculty. So the distinguished
faculty award is given to an outstanding I
School faculty member who was heavily involved in
the academic life of students, demonstrated leadership and
provided superior academic or professional guidance and advice. – So, this year the award recipient is someone who teaches
with absolutely contagious and genuine enthusiasm,
he teaches in a way that makes difficult
topics more approachable by relating them to
something more familiar and encouraging people
to ask questions and or challenge concepts
perhaps with the exception of how cute rabbits are. (laughing) He’s passion and humor
motivates people to take classes that they might have
otherwise shied away from and makes them feel welcome
and valued in and out of the classroom, his ability
to combine a healthy amount of rabbit pictures, stock
photos of people eating salad, and Game of Thrones
references in his lectures while unpacking complex statistics and social psychology
concepts is a testament to his ability to make
nuanced topics fun, engaging and memorable. – So this year’s Distinguished
Faculty Award goes to Coye Cheshire (applause) Sorry, Professor Coye Cheshire. (applause) (laughing) (applause) Okay, our second award this morning is the outstanding TA, Teaching Assistant. So the outstanding
teaching assistant award is giving to a member
of the graduating class who showed a unique or
extraordinary commitment to facilitating the
learning of students in one or more I School classes, they served as a graduate student instructor. So this year we have
two award recipients. – Because all y’all are
just too incredible. So the first – this is
the no particular order – the first, we both had the opportunity to class, he was a TA for
and every time he spoke in class, it was with
overflowing excitement he had mentioned small points
that made a massive difference in making complex topics more
relevant and understandable. I remember the first time
he was showing us how to use a coding language that was new
to a lot of us, and he started by saying, by no means was he
an expert, that he only knew the bare minimum and that
Stack Overflow might be a better teacher for
anything beyond the bounds of that class, his honesty,
humility and friendliness. made us all feel comfortable
to ask him questions and he would somehow
respond no matter the time. Also, he reminded us to have
fun from making hip hop beats to jumping on the dance
floor singing karaoke. Our second, she is sharp
and kind, insightful and inspiring, humble and confident. I had the tremendous
privilege of having her as a TA this year, she provided
incredibly thoughtful and constructive critique, in
class and on our assignments with demonstrated her
commitment to students learning and growth, I found myself
in awe as she would spend most of the time listening
intently before providing her perspective and when she
did provide her perspective it was in a way that
acknowledged and appreciated where someone was coming from
all provoking further thinking or suggesting alternative directions, her keen and curious eye reminds
all of us to see the world a little differently, to
observe, reflect and question to stay critical and perhaps
even a little whimsical. – So, this year’s awards go to Jake Mainwaring and Joyce Lee. (applause) (laughing) (mumbling) (applause) (chattering) (laughing) (applause) So our third and last award this morning is the MIMS Spirit Award. The MIMS Spirit Award is given to a member of the graduating class who
demonstrated significant support in academics and/or career guidance, outstanding outreach and
leadership with first year students and a strong bond with
the I School community both inside and outside South Hall. – Again, there was a tie for
this one too, so I don’t know. So the first: while
accomplishing multiple UX design and research projects, she’s
also always continually, studying the ethics and
issues that came along with technological innovations. Besides her academic
achievements, she’s one of the warmest people you
can find in the program, constantly caring for other
people and their well being. I mean, she’s a type of
person that when she asked how are you doing, she actually
wants to hear the answer. To her inspiring work ethic
and social perspective as well as her eagerness
to help or listen makes her a true embodiment as a MIMS spirit. For a second, his warmth and readiness help immediately put
people at ease and feel like they belong, to quote a MIMS 20 I remember instantly feeling
like we were brothers both because he was
extremely helpful and because he teased me within the first few minutes. He is the kind of person
who is quick to jump on the dance floor or help talk
through a machine learning or linear algebra homework problem. His fun loving, easygoing,
and down to earth nature, coupled with a strong
work ethics and reminder to consider the impact of
our work clearly demonstrates the MIMS Spirit. – This year’s awards go to. (mumbling) (laughing) Michelle Chen and Mahmoud Hamsho. (applause) – So that concludes our awards but to know all of you are very award-worthy. It’s been an absolute pleasure
getting to know all of you we are so grateful for your
advice and your support your humor and perhaps most
of all your friendship. Well, we’ll miss seeing you
in South Hall or around campus we know that the world can
definitely use your vision your talent and your
spirit, so congratulations, Cheers and we can’t wait to see where our paths might cross again. (applause) – Okay, it’s my pleasure now to announce the two winning teams for the
2019 James R. Chen Awards. These awards are given annually to the most outstanding
capstone project teams in honor of James Chen, a research
computer scientist who worked in the area of personalized
information retrieval. We’re actually delighted to have Lily Chen his wife here with us today. (applause) So since there are two
awards, I’m gonna announce one and tell you about it
and then the other one. Can I ask that you don’t
applaud until or come up until I finish describing
the project, I know you’re going to want to but I
want to describe the projects. Okay, so the first
James K. Chen Award goes to improving the enrollment
experience for families. Okay, you can clap, it’s okay. (applause) This goes to Varshine
Chandrakanthan, Rajasi Desai, and Kaushiki Priyam. please. (applause) This project aims to make
the process of enrollment in the public schools in
the San Francisco Bay Area more understandable for the parents. It was done, this project
was done in collaboration with the San Francisco
Unified School District and Jenna Burrell was the advisor. Join me in congratulating. (applause) Now you can come get your awards. (laughing) I didn’t mean to intimidate you, okay. (applause) (chattering) – Congratulations – Thank you so much. (applause) – The second 2019 James K. Chen Award goes to a project called Skindex. Devin Huang, Daphne Jong, Monik Pamecha, Jeffrey Chih-Chuan Yu. Skindex is an AI-powered
and personalized search and discovery platform that allows users to find skincare and
cosmetic products that are compatible with their
skin, and their faculty advisor is John Chuang, please come
up and accept the award. (applause) (chattering) (applause) (laughing) (applause) It’s now my honor to announce
them MIDS Teaching Awards. The MIDS Distinguished
Faculty Award this year goes to Maya Miller-Vedam,
lecturer for Data Science W261: Machine learning at scale. Unfortunately Maya isn’t
here to accept the award and the MIDS best TA award
goes to Krissy Gianforte. Unfortunately, Krissy isn’t here either but let’s give them both
a round of applause. (applause) Okay, last but by far not least, the Hal R. Varian MIDS Capstones Awards. This prize is given in
honor of Hal R. Varian the founding dean of the
School of Information for the most outstanding capstone project. Competition for this prize
is very tough because we have such large graduating cohorts. This year the Hal R. Varian Award goes to SoundFlux, a Sound-Based
Fall Detection System. You can clap. (applause) Romulo Manzano, Matt Thielen,
and Mike Frazzini. SoundFlux, it’s an amazing project. It’s a sound-based fall
detection system that uses a neural network trained
from simulated human falls along with millions of open source sounds to provide effective,
low-cost, unintrusive and privacy-sensitive peace
of mind for their elderly and their loved ones, congratulations. (applause) Oh yeah, Michael’s… congratulations. – Thank you. (chattering) (applause) – Okay, we are now at
the point that you’ve all been waiting for, when we
will confer the degrees. I just want to once again
congratulate all of you for how far you’ve come
and I really look forward to afar you will go in the future. I’d like to call up John
Chaung to read the names of the MIMS students, before
the name reading begins I want you to remind you to pause briefly. When you shake my hand and
look at the photographer for a picture, some
people just get anxious and walk past too fast. (laughing) (audience member coughing) – Ayobamidele Animashaun. (applause) Matt Bayley. (applause) Birinder Singh Bhatia. (applause) Bo Brandt. (applause) Timothy States Burke. (applause) (mumbling) (laughing) Varshine Chandrakanthan. (applause) Michelle Chen. (applause) Han-Yu Chen. (applause) Zhixuan Dai. (applause) (laughing) Rajasi Desai. (applause) Marc Faddoul. (applause) Zihao Fan. (applause) Dylan R Fox. (applause) Mahmoud Hamsho. (applause) Amy Huang. (applause) Devin Huang. (applause) Conner James Hunihan. (applause) Dimitris Hytiroglou. (applause) Daphne Jong. (applause) Rohan Kapuria. (applause) Rohan Kar. (applause) Aakriti Kaul. (applause) Joyce S. Lee (applause) Winnie Lee. (applause) Alyssa Li. (applause) Yu-Cheng Lin. (applause) Ching-Yi Lin (applause) Lily E. Lin. (applause) Muxuan Lyu. (applause) Jake Mainwaring. (applause) Neha Mittal. (applause) Evelyn Muthoni Mwangi. (applause) Udit Nakhat. (applause) Monik Pamecha. (applause) Anu Pandey. (applause) Michelle Anne Peretz. (applause) Tanya Piplani. (applause) Sejal Popat (applause) Soravis Prakkamakul (applause) Kaushiki Priyam (applause) Anuj Ramakrishnan (applause) Shaivya Rastogi. (applause) Surya Sendyl. (applause) Jiaxun Song. (applause) Ashish Sur. (applause) Jing Xiong Wu. (applause) Pei Yu Yang. (applause) Qian Yu. (applause) Jeffery Chih-Chuan Yu. (applause) – Congratulations to all the MIMS ’19 and now I’d like to, yes. (applause) I’d like to invite Alex Hughes to read the names of the MIDS students. – So for the MIDS students,
I’ll read your names once you come past, we were clapping while you’re in front of Anno. And bring your kids if you brought them. Gene Ahn. (applause) Asha Anju. (applause) Ram Balasubramanian. (applause) James Matthew Beck. (applause) Julia Anne Buffinton. (applause) Jesse Lamas Calvillo. (applause) Felipe Cruz Neiva Campos. (applause) Cheng Cheng. (applause) Christopher Danicic. (applause) – Thank you. – Saurav Datta. (applause) Kingsuk Maitra. (applause) Zachary Reed Merritt. (applause) Sohag Desai. (applause) Arturo Esquerra. (applause) Luke Evans. (applause) Rani Fields. (applause) F. Michael Frazzini. (applause) Bala Ganeshan. (applause) Kevin Scott Gifford. (applause) Mark Gin. (applause) Seung Hun Ham. (applause) David C. R. Harding. (applause) Richard A. Hitchens. (applause) Simon Hodgkinson. (applause) Congratulations, Look who I met. Matthew Randall Holmes – and crew. (laughing) (applause) Linh Tran. (applause) Rich Ung. (applause) Nishant Velagapudi. (applause) Jeffrey Hsu. (applause) Saurabh Jaju. (applause) Tiffany Victorine Jaya. (applause) Kalvin D. Kao (applause) Daniel Theodore Ling Kent. (applause) April Kim. (applause) Beau Branick Kramer. (applause) Pavan Kumar Kurapati. (applause) Alice Shem Ling Lam. (applause) Noah William Levy. (applause) Michelle A Liu. (applause) Alison Walker. (applause) Laura Williams. (applause) Arvindh Ganesan. (applause) Anirudh Mittal. (applause) Jack C. Workman. (applause) Tianhao Xu. (applause) Zhaoning Yu. (applause) Qing Zhang. (applause) Anusha Munjuluri. (applause) James T. Nguyen. (applause) Christina Papadimitriou. (applause) John Pette. (applause) Melwin Poovakottu. (applause) Matthew Erin Potts. (applause) Anthony Ramirez. (applause) Anamika Sinha. (applause) Sudha Subramanian. (applause) One more round of applause for all the MIDS graduates please. (applause) – And you know Ph.D.s are all
used to waiting for a long time and taking… everything
takes a long time. Well, now it’s your chance
to come up and be awarded your degrees, I’m gonna ask
Coye Cheshire to come up and read the names and they’ll be hooded as is appropriate for Ph.D.s – Alright, Ph.D.s. (laughing) Niall Carrigan Keleher. (applause) Dissertation entitled Economic Indicators and Social Networks, New
Approaches to Measuring Poverty, Prices, and Impacts of Technology. Ah. Hooded by Paul Duguid; his head advisor, Professor Joshua Blumenstock. (applause) (laughing) (applause) Muhammad Raza Khan. (applause) His dissertation Entitled Machine Learning for the Developing World using Mobile Communication Metadata will be hooded by Professor Joshua Blumenstock. (applause) (laughing) (applause) And last but not least. (laughing) Elaine M Sedenberg. (applause) Her dissertation entitled
Public Interests, Private Data, Biosense Data Consumed and
Shared for Research Purposes. Hooded by her Co-Advisors, professors John Chuang
and Deirdre Mulligan. (applause) – Thank you Coye, and
congratulations again to the Ph.D.s and their children. (laughing) (applause) We’re about at the end of the ceremony I want to thank all of
the family and friends who’ve come here from far
and near for your support of the students out of the
school and I especially want to thank the staff of the
I School for your hard work and once again doing such a
wonderful job with graduation. Please give them a round of applause. (applause) To all the 2019 graduates, like he said, Don’t forget to write,
stay in touch with us and with one another and with us. And now you’re all invited back to
South Hall for a reception. I’ll look forward to seeing you there. (applause)

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