Jenn Wortman Vaughan

Advice for Graduate Students

Thinking about applying to grad school, or just getting started on your Ph.D.? Mihir Bellare's Ph.D. Experience gives a great summary of the "research way of life" that is especially relevant for theory students. He has collected some links to guides by others as well.

Marie desJardins' advice about how to succeed in grad school is a good read for both students and advisors, though of course, everyone has a different experience. Mark Dredze and Hanna Wallach put together another guide targeted at students in machine learning or NLP.

For those of you who are closer to graduation, Stephanie Weirich created a page of advice about the academic job search process that I found extremely useful during my own search. More recently, I came across this page of advice from Matt Might (who also has good tips on applying to grad school and productivity).

Women in Computer Science

When I first started grad school, I often felt like this. As a result, I decided to get involved in a variety of efforts to provide increased support and encouragement to new female computer scientists.

Hanna Wallach, Lisa Wainer, and I co-founded the Annual Workshop for Women in Machine Learning back in 2006. In recent years, I've served on the workshop's executive board. The workshop was designed to give female students in machine learning a unique chance to meet and exchange ideas with other women with similar research interests, as well as an opportunity to present their work in a friendly environment. New grad students and undergrads with an interest in Machine Learning are highly encouraged to attend!

I also spent three years as the organizer of CISters, Penn's group for female grad students, postdocs, and faculty in computer and information science. I made some great friends through this group, and started a similar group for grad students at UCLA.

I served as the program co-chair of the first Celebration of Women in Computing in Southern California which was held April 14-15, 2012 in Santa Ana.