Fayetteville State University Faculty Member Selected for Google Program

Dr. Sambit Bhattacharya, an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Fayetteville State University (FSU), has been selected by Google to participate in its inaugural faculty sabbatical program. The program will be held June 5 through July 14, 2017, at Google’s Mountain View, California office. Participants receive a salary for their time in the program, as well as a stipend and assistance with housing while in California.

The program will consist of a cohort of faculty peers working together to better understand the perspective of software engineers and the importance of applied learning to boost student readiness for industry roles.   It will be an immersive and hands-on learning experience where faculty participants will collaborate to create projects and iterate with real-time feedback. The program will be a unique opportunity to gain insight into Google’s engineering culture, the skills of its developers and how education teams keep pace with changing technologies.

At the end of the program, faculty will implement curricula and departmental changes by leveraging computer science curricula, pedagogy, project resources and action plan created during time in residency. Throughout the fall 2017 semester, there will be additional opportunities to reconnect and access support and tracking to ensure successful integration.

Faculty were selected with the following criteria:

  • Be an advocate and agent for change in computer science education (demonstrated via participation in Google/United Negro College Fund (UNCF) DC Faculty Summit, UNCF ICE summit, UNCF Career Pathways Initiative, support of or participation in Google programs like CSSI, Google in Residence, Applied CS, Ignite CS and others)
  • Provide computer science departmental growth aspirational data per ICE Summit attendees action item
  • Have explicit support of the computer science education department chair
  • Be willing to actively collaborate and co-create with cohort of peers

Dr. Bhattacharya has taught computer science at FSU since 2005. His research interests are in machine learning, computer vision and their applications in robotics and geospatial data analysis. He teaches in these same areas, including introductory programming and computer systems. His research, and education program development efforts have been supported over the years by grants from the National Science Foundation, US Department of Education and the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency. He collaborates with scientists at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., and he also collaborates with industry on research projects.

Dr. Bhattacharya holds master’s degrees in physics, computer science, and data processing, earned his doctorate in computer science and engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

Fayetteville State University is a constituent institution of The University of North Carolina and the second-oldest public institution of higher education in the state. FSU offers degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. With more than 6,200 students, Fayetteville State University is among the most diverse institutions in the nation.