Message From Chair

Stefan-Andrei

Welcome to the Computer Science Department website. We enjoy showing you the milestones and good news of our programs and the achievements of our students, faculty and staff. 

Our faculty are actively involved in three 'Visionary Projects’ funded by the president office until August 2019 totaling $660,000. For example, Dr. Sujing Wang is co-Pi in the visionary project called "Cyber security, infrastructure and abnormal situation management for the process industry". The objective of this project is to develop “novel cost effective/profitable” flaring minimization (FM) and emission reduction technologies and software with commercial applications. Dr. Stefan Andrei is a co-Pi in the Visionary Project "A Center for Applications of Digital Technologies in Health and Disability (CADT)". The aim of this project is to create a “center of excellence for the applications of digital technologies in the care and management of health and disability.” In addition Dr. Andrei is a co-Pi for the Visionary Project called "Interdisciplinary Freshman Experience at Lamar University". The all-university Interdisciplinary Freshman Experience brings together students of diverse backgrounds and interests — from disciplines that do not typically interact in the undergraduate curriculum— to work as groups toward a common goal. 

The National Science Foundation has awarded Lamar University over $2.3M in the last four years to support the research and outreach programs to local public schools of our faculty. Professors Doerschuk, Liu, Makki, Sun, Osborne and Andrei have received significant awards. Dr. Bo Sun and Dr. Qin Qian in Civil Engineering received a research grant of $216,000 from the National Science Foundation entitled "Acquisition of Equipment to Develop an Ubiquitous Wireless Sensor Network for Measurement, Modeling, and Prediction in Water Resource Management".  The goal of this project is design and implement an energy efficient and reliable Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) for measurement, modeling, and prediction in water resource management. The constructed WSN will be able to obtain measurements of temperature, water dissolved oxygen, water depth, flow rate, and pH value spatially and temporally with high resolution and accuracy. This research will apply WSN-collected real-time, large-scale heterogeneous data to develop, calibrate, and validate water quantity and quality models, to characterize interactions among water resources, climate changes, and human impact to provide more accurate prediction for water sustainability management under different scenarios.

The National Science Foundation has awarded Lamar University a grant #1154606 of more than $550,000 to support the ASCENT program which provides scholarships for students majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics who have completed their first two years of work with at least a 3.0 GPA and who are eligible for financial aid. Community college transfer students are encouraged to apply as well as those students who have been attending Lamar. The Principal Investigator of ASCENT is Dr. Kumer Das in the Department of Mathematics, and the Co-Principal Investigators are Dr. Stefan Andrei (Computer Science), Dr. Dale Daniel (Mathematics), and Dr. Lawrence Osborne (Computer Science). The awarding of these scholarships is complemented by extensive academic support including a Summer Bridge and Enrichment program, undergraduate research, multi-level mentoring, and post-graduation placement

University Professor Peggy Doerschuk is the Principal Investigator of a one million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation, for a program called STAIRSTEP (http://www.lamar.edu/stairstep/), funded for a period of five years starting January 1, 2009. The program is designed to increase the number of US citizens getting undergraduate degrees in STEM. It provides undergraduates majoring in Computer Science, Chemistry, Geology/Earth Science, Math, and Physics with an opportunity to engage in team research and outreach under the direction of a faculty mentor in their discipline. Students are paid a competitive stipend and participate in research and outreach in small teams for ten hours a week. Outreach activities include participation in on-campus recruiting events like Open House and Road Shows to local high schools and community colleges. During its first 3.5 years, 67 undergraduates participated in the program. Ninety-one percent of participants were retained in their STEM majors. Eighty-three percent of graduates were successfully transitioned into either graduate programs or STEM related employment within 6 months of graduation. Several participants who graduated are now teaching math and physics in local high schools and community colleges, and several are pursuing graduate study in STEM at Lamar, Purdue, North Carolina State, and other universities. STAIRSTEP students and faculty interacted with almost 3,000 students, educators, and others in the first three years through outreach activities. From fall of 2008 to fall of 2011, First Time in College enrollments in the five STAIRSTEP disciplines increased twenty-six percent, and the number of majors in STAIRSTEP departments grew steadily from 255 to 360, an increase of 41%. Since August 2015, STAIRSTEP is funded by Lamar University. Please refer the STAIRSTEP website for more information. To contact a STAIRSTEP faculty mentor or to apply click on the 'Contact Us' link.

Our students are very active in academic activities organized by many Lamar University Chapters, including the Association of Computing Machinery (https://acm.cs.lamar.edu/). Their members represent Lamar University at the ACM-ICPC South Central USA Regional Programming Contest (http://acm2012.cct.lsu.edu/), organize the ACM Spring Banquet, LAN parties, voluntary tutoring, and more. 

The job market is good these days for Computer Science majors. While many people think that the number of people employed in IT has fallen since the Internet dot.com companies suffered losses after 2000, the fact is that there are many more individuals working in computer science related careers as there were then. 

In fact projections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics at http://www.bls.gov indicate that such occupations as Software Engineer, Database Administrator, Network Security Analyst, and Software Architect are likely to be among the professions that expand the most during the next decade. Many of our students both native-born Americans and International Students are working in Internships with companies this summer, because the demand for expertise in the latest computing technologies exceeds the number of experienced workers seeking employment. There has never been a better time to get into the field of computer science, which involves every aspect of human endeavor from familiar technologies like wireless phones, medical imaging, and game design, to new breakthroughs in nanotechnology and quantum computing. 

Computer Science at Lamar offers a state-of-the-art equipment, ABET accreditation (http://www.abet.org/accreditation/) of the undergraduate B.S. in Computer Science program, small classes - hence a good ratio between student and instructors, and professors with strong research credentials as well as a lifetime commitment to quality teaching and service. 

If you want to communicate with us, you can send email to "cs at lamar.edu" or "denise.rode at lamar.edu" or use the 'Send Us Your Question / Comments' link to send us your comments at http://cs.lamar.edu/comment/. We would be happy to have you visit the Department and tour our facilities. 

Alumni can enter our alumni database at http://cs.lamar.edu/alumni/registform.html. You can leave your email address and/or your webpage there for other alumni who may want to contact you. 
If you are an employer of one or more of our students, please give us some feedback concerning the performance of our graduates at our Employer Survey page. 


Best wishes,
Dr. Stefan Andrei, Associate Professor and Department Chair
Department of Computer Science
E-mail: cs at lamar dot edu