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Katharina Kann

I’m an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at CU Boulder, where I work on natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning. Research-wise, I am interested in multilingual NLP (how can we make NLP systems work for all of the world’s languages?), transfer learning (how can models use knowledge gained from a source task for a target task?), and computational morphology (how can models learn about and leverage subword information?). More generally, circumstances permitting, I spend a lot of my time traveling, dancing, hiking, and biking, and I love sushi, ice cream and watermelons.

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Shiran Dudy

I am a postdoc in computer science at CU Boulder, where I focus on natural language processing (NLP) and reinforcement learning (RL). I am participating in the institute for student-AI teaming project (iSAT) where we investigate how to integrate digital assistants into a classroom setting. I am also interested in finding ways to address diversity in natural language generation (NLG), addressing algorithmic biases, working towards continual learning models (particularly in NLP), and accessibility and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). Outside of work I like practicing yoga, hiking, reading, cooking, and also just hanging out with friends. :-)

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Yoshinari Fujinuma

I'm a sixth-year computer science Ph.D. candidate at the University of Colorado, Boulder. My current research topic is on cross-lingual NLP, i.e., making NLP models language-agnostic.

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Abteen Ebrahimi

I'm a second-year PhD student advised by Prof. Katharina Kann. I'm broadly interested in multilingual NLP, with a focus on low-resource and unseen languages. Currently, I'm working on developing new resources and methods to increase model performance and community awareness for these languages. Previously, I worked on text generation and dialogue systems.

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Ananya Ganesh

I am a second-year PhD student advised by Profs. Katharina Kann and Martha Palmer. I'm broadly interested in natural language processing as applied to educational settings, and I’m currently working on developing NLP models to understand and improve classroom discourse. Previously, I was a research engineer in the NLP & Speech Research group at the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and I received a Master's in Computer Science from UMass Amherst. In my free time, I enjoy reading fantasy fiction, solving puzzles, and exploring Boulder.

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Stephane Aroca-ouellette

After completing my undergrad at University of Toronto in computer engineering, I pursued my masters in computer science with a focus on natural language processing. While investigating new auxiliary tasks for BERT pre-training, I saw the power of modern language models while learning the inherent limitation of inhabiting purely textual environments. Co-advised by Alessandro Roncone and Katharina Kann, I am now working towards my PhD at CU Boulder to answer how robotics can help ground language in the real world and how language can help our interaction and collaboration with robots.

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Adam Wiemerslage

I am a first-year PhD student in computer science advised by Katharina Kann. My research interests are in natural language processing, particularly relating to computational morphology, under-represented languages, and multilingual models. I am especially interested in machine learning models that draw upon or explore linguistic insights. Previously I was a research scientist in industry, and before that I spent a year at a government laboratory, which has given me broad experience in various subareas of NLP. In my free time, I strive to be a good Coloradoan by hiking/biking/camping/climbing as well as brewing/tasting beer.

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Sagi Shaier

Currently a PhD student at CU Boulder, advised by Katharina Kann and Lawrence Hunter. I completed my undergraduate degree in computational and applied mathematics on the pre-med track with a focus on epidemiology. Later I worked in the industry for about 1.5 years in various machine learning & data science positions. My sights are set on using the intersection of artificial intelligence and neuroscience to improve people’s lives. My research interests are artificial general intelligence, reasoning, knowledge graphs, dynamic systems, continual learning, and online learning. More specifically, I’m interested in developing more biologically plausible computational models of cognition that can reason. Outside of academia I spend most of my time practicing Muay Thai, hiking, failing to teach my puppy how to play fetch, and going on spontaneous road trips.

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Cory Paik

I am a second-year master student in computer science at CU Boulder. My research interests are in the development of AI systems that are able to comprehend the natural world in profound ways. My current project is investigating the behavior of NLP models within this context. Prior to this, I completed my undergraduate in computer science here at CU.

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Pragna Mandadi

Hi, I'm a second-year Masters in Computer Science Student. I'm interested in developing multilayered and multidimensional AI systems that focus on revolutionizing the way modern problems are solved. Currently I'm working on a question reformulation project to enhance the model's ability to perceive and understand context so that the model can answer questions derived from a paragraph or a comprehension more accurately. Prior to this I've had an industry experience of 2.5 years at Citicorp Services as an Application Developer. In my free time I enjoy watching TV shows and socializing with people.

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Nikita Menon

Hi, I'm a first-year Master's in Computer Science student. My key interests lie in the fields of machine learning & data science. I am currently working on a project relating to computational morphology, under-represented languages and multilingual models. Previously I was a data scientist at IBM India where I worked on time series forecasting, natural language processing and computer vision. In my free time, I like to paint, play sports and spend time with my friends & family.

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Arvind Sreenivas

I am a first-year master's student in computer science at CU Boulder. My research interests are in the area of low-resource languages and machine translation that would help breach the language resource gap amongst people. Currently I’m working on observing the effects of hyperparameters on LSTMs & Transformers along with the impact that types of words might have on them. I enjoy watching TV shows, exploring the outdoors and making impromptu plans with friends!

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Dorothea French

I'm a fourth-year undergraduate student, interested in NLP for education; especially language learning research and teaching methods. I'd also like to explore dialogue systems, multilingual NLP, and semantics, and their applications in this field. Currently I'm working on a project to determine whether language models and young English second-language learners make similar grammatical mistakes in English. In my free time, I enjoy playing board games, reading, and trying new food and drinks.


Previous NALA members

  • Connor Cook (master's student, 08/2020-12/2020)
  • Jeff Lucca (undergraduate student, 08/2020-03/2020)
  • Rajat Bhatnagar (master's student, 02/2020-05/2021)
  • Andrew Gerlach (master's student, 08/2020-05/2021)
  • Nikhil Prabhu (master's student, 08/2020-07/2021)
  • Changbing Yang (master's student, 08/2020-07/2021)