Ziyu Yao, final year PH.D student of Computer Science and Engineering and pupil of TDAI Core Faculty Huan Sun was recently selected to participate in the 2020 Rising Stars Workshops Series. The academic workshop for women, hosted by Berkeley EECS, is interested in increasing the numbers of women interested in pursuing academic careers in computer science, computer engineering and electrical engineering. This annual event was launched at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2012 and previously hosted by UC Berkeley in 2014. Participants are selected based on academic excellence, interest in a faculty career in the EECS discipline, and commitment to advancing equity and inclusion. The 2020 Rising Stars event took place on November 9-10, and hosted 152 women doctoral/postdoctoral participants from 68 institutions in 11 countries and 87 faculty mentors representing 7 of the 10 top-ranked EECS universities in the country.
Ziyu Yao’s research focusses on AI and NLP, particularly building effective and trustworthy natural language interfaces (NLIs, e.g., semantic parsers, question answering systems) to assist humans with knowledge acquisition and problem solving. More specifically, the research revolves around constructing natural language interfaces to computer programs, creating human interactive and collaborative NLIs, and designing NLI’s that continually and efficiently improve themselves from the practical user feedback/annotations. Her research hopes to eventually allow humans commanding and communicating with computers via natural language.
Huan Sun was also selected for the workshop in 2015, claiming that meeting peers and veteran academics in the field was an inspiring experience as a young researcher.