New Chronicle Video Based on Our “5 Tips” For Chairs

I’m excited to see the new Two-Minute Tips video posted by The Chronicle of Higher Education. Two-Minute Tips are billed as “Short videos to help you excel in the academic workplace.” This week’s video is based on the essay I recently co-wrote with Rob Kramer titled “5 Tips on Surviving Your First Year as Department Head.”

Our new paper in Nature Genetics

I’m thrilled to see our new paper in Nature Genetics: Functional classification of long non-coding RNAs by k-mer content led by BCB graduate student Jessime Kirk in Mauro Calabrese’s lab.

And it was even enough to motivate Mauro to post his first lab account tweet:

(I’m a mostly lurking, occasional retweeter on an account you are unlikely to find, even if you cared to try.)

See also: Scientists Create Method to Map Vast Unknown Territory of Long Non-coding RNA

New MURI award

I am very excited about our new MURI award from the ARO, “Multiscale integration of neural, social, and network theory to understand and predict transitions from illness to wellness.” Working with Emily Falk and Dani Bassett at Penn and Kevin Ochsner at Columbia, our project aims toward “A proof of concept with mindfulness, hypnosis and alcohol use disorders.”

Working on this project with me at UNC is new postdoctoral associate, Dr. Emma Smith. Emma joins us having just completed her Ph.D. in Sociology at UC-Irvine, where she worked with Carter Butts.

We just returned from Philadelphia, visiting Penn for the Kickoff Meeting for this project, and look forward to these exciting collaborative activities in the coming months and years.

5 Tips on Surviving Your FIrst Year as a Department Head

I’m very excited about our advice essay appearing in this week’s The Chronicle of Higher Education, coauthored with Rob Kramer.

Rob and I together co-facilitate the Chairs Leadership Program at the Institute for the Arts & Humanities here at UNC. Our essay aims to concisely summarize some of the common lessons we’ve seen department chairs learn as they work through their first year in the position. I am grateful to Rob and to the IAH for the opportunity to work with the amazing people who come through this program each year.

Graduation 2018

With congratulations to all of the graduates who celebrated this past weekend, I am particularly proud of and will miss the three group members who wore their caps and gowns. Dr. Sam Heroy will move to England later this summer to start a postdoctoral position at Oxford. Dr. Natalie Stanley is moving all too immediately to California to start her postdoctoral position at Stanford. Nic Larsen graduated with his bachelors degree and will start graduate school this fall at NC State.

The assortment of pictures below is from the Ph.D. hooding ceremony. Even though I enjoyed my funny photobomb, my favorite picture is the one of Natalie and Sam with UNC’s most famous alumnus (well, sort of with him, down in the halls under the Smith Center). We had a little bit of spare time down there since I obviously erred on the side of getting there early.

Network Frontier Workshop presentation now online

With continued thanks to the organizers of the Network Frontier Workshop, I am happy to see that they’ve put this year’s talks online.

Mucha presents at the Network Frontier Workshop

A big thank you to Adilson Motter and the whole team of people at Northwestern for continuing their Network Frontier Workshop series. While it would have been nice to see everyone in person like in past years, the online virtual format worked well. Congratulations to the organizers for working well through the technical details. I greatly enjoyed the talks and was honored to participate again.

Group descends on Data Institute SF Annual Conference

Congratulations to all involved in the Data Institute SF Annual Conference, with a big thank you to conference chair James Wilson for giving us the opportunity to talk networks in this wonderful venue.

We had a phenomenal showing in our Networks track, across four sessions chaired by Mucha, including 15 speakers. In addition to Networks track talks by Mucha (chair’s prerogative) and group alumnus Dane Taylor, PhD student Natalie Stanley talked in a session on Machine Learning Applications, and PhD students Sam Heroy and William Weir both gave posters.

Thank you to all of the speakers (pictured below) who joined us for our Networks track. It was an honor to have such an amazing cast in our track!


Core-periphery “revisited” appears in SIREV SIGEST

We are proud to have our 2014 SIAM Journal of Applied Mathematics paper on “Core-Periphery Structure in Networks” appear as the highlighted SIGEST article in this quarter’s issue of SIAM Review.

As described on the SIAM Review web site, “SIGEST highlights a recent paper from one of SIAM’s specialized research journals, chosen on the basis of exceptional interest to the entire SIAM community and revised and condensed as needed for greater accessibility.”

More information about this work can be obtained from this quarter’s SIGEST introduction to the new version of our paper, revised for SIAM Review with updated material.

Sam Heroy teaches networks in Girls Talk Math

Congratulations to graduate student Sam Heroy for designing a successful curriculum on network science at this summer’s Girls Talk Math camp here at UNC in the Department of Mathematics. Girls Talk Math is a two-week camp for rising 9th to 12th graders who are interesting in exploring challenging math problems that go beyond the high school curriculum.

At the end of the camp, some of the students wrote an entertaining blog post about their experience and what they learned in network science.

Congratulations to Sam and to the organizers of the camp. Congratulations also to graduate student Natalie Stanley, who also participated with a presentation at the camp.