New Faculty (2019)

Pulkit Agrawal will join the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in July. Agrawal earned a BS in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, and was awarded the Director’s Gold Medal. He earned a PhD in computer science from the University of California at Berkeley. A co-founder of SafelyYou, Inc., Agrawal researches topics spanning robotics, deep learning, computer vision, and computational neuroscience. His work has appeared multiple times in MIT Technology Review, Quanta, New Scientist, the New York Post, and other outlets. He is a recipient of the Signatures Fellow Award, a Fulbright science and technology award, the Goldman Sachs Global Leadership Award, OPJEMS, the Sridhar Memorial Prize, and IIT Kanpur’s academic excellence awards, among others. Agrawal also holds a “sangeet prabhakar” (the equivalent of bachelor’s degree in Indian classical music) and occasionally performs in music concerts.

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Website
Pulkit Agrawal
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science https://engineering.mit.edu/faculty/pulkit-agrawal/

Jacob Andreas will join the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in July. Andreas received a BS from Columbia University and an MPhil from the University of Cambridge, where he studied as a Churchill Scholar. He earned his PhD from the University of California at Berkeley, where he was a member of the Berkeley Natural Language Processing Group and the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab. His work is focused on using language as a scaffold for more efficient learning and as a probe for understanding model behavior. His received the 2016 Annual Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics Best Paper Award and the 2017 International Conference on Machine Learning Honorable Mention. He has been an NSF Graduate Fellow, a Huawei-Berkeley AI Fellow, and a Facebook Fellow.

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Website
Jacob Andreas
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science https://engineering.mit.edu/faculty/jacob-andreas/

Sili Deng will join the Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor in January 2019. She received her PhD from Princeton University in 2016 and is currently doing postdoctoral work at Stanford University. Deng works in the area of combustion, with a focus on understanding flame dynamics and emissions during combustion processes. She performed both modeling and experiments to understand, characterize, and detect non-premixed cool-flame behavior for the first time, and she experimentally elucidated the sooting limits of diesel and biofuel surrogates in a simple liquid stagnation flow. She also investigated soot evolution in turbulent flames via modeling to provide insights into understanding both chemical and hydrodynamic effects on soot emissions. Deng has received several awards including the Bernard Lewis Fellowship from the Combustion Institute, the Gordon Wu Prize for Excellence from Princeton, which also awarded her an excellence in teaching award. 

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Website
Sili Deng
Mechanical Engineering https://engineering.mit.edu/faculty/sili-deng/

Ashwin Gopinath joins the Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor this month. He received his PhD in electrical engineering from Boston University in 2010 and was awarded the outstanding doctoral thesis award by his department. He is presently a research scientist in the Department of Bioengineering at the California Institute of Technology. His main research is at the intersection of DNA nanotechnology, micro-fabrication, synthetic biology, optical physics, and materials science. His main research is on DNA origami and design, up to wafer-scale self-assembly with molecular-scale control, and possibilities for microfabricated devices. His present application areas involve quantum optics, nanophotonics, single molecule biophysics, and molecular diagnostics. In 2017, he received the Robert Dirks Molecular Programming Prize for his early career contributions to combining DNA nanotechnology and traditional semiconductor nanofabrication.

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Website
Ashwin Gopinath
Mechanical Engineering https://engineering.mit.edu/faculty/ashwin-gopinath/

Negar Reiskarimian will join the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science as an assistant professor in July. She received both a BS and MS degree in electrical engineering from Sharif University of Technology in Iran and is currently a PhD candidate in electrical engineering at Columbia University. She has published in top-tier IEEE IC-related journals and conferences, as well as broader-interest high-impact journals in the Nature family. Her research has been widely covered in the press and featured in IEEE Spectrum, Gizmodo, and EE Times, among others. She is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including Forbes’ “30 under 30,” a Paul Baran Young Scholar award, a Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship, and multiple IEEE awards and fellowships.

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Website
Negar Reiskarimian
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science https://engineering.mit.edu/faculty/negar-reiskarimian/

Giovanni Traverso will join the Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor in July. He received his PhD in medical sciences from Johns Hopkins University in 2010. He subsequently completed medical school at Cambridge University, an internal medicine residency at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), and his gastroenterology fellowship training at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is presently an assistant professor of medicine and associate physician in the division of gastroenterology at BWH. For his postdoctoral research at MIT, he developed a series of novel technologies for drug delivery as well as physiological sensing via the gastrointestinal tract. His present research focuses on developing efficient systems for drug delivery through the gastrointestinal tract, as well as novel ingestible electronic devices for sensing a broad array of physiologic and pathophysiologic parameters. He has been the recipient of the grand prize of the Collegiate Inventors Competition, a research fellowship from Trinity College, and was named one of the most promising innovators under 35 by MIT Technology Review. Traverso is a co-founder of Lyndra, Suono Bio, and Celero Systems which have been established to accelerate the translation of technologies developed by his team, for use in medical care.

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Website
Giovanni Traverso
Mechanical Engineering http://meche.mit.edu/people/faculty/cgt20@mit.edu

Cathy Wu will join the Institute as an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, with a core affiliation in the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society, in July. Wu earned a PhD in electrical engineering and computer science at the University of California at Berkeley, where she worked with the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab, Berkeley DeepDrive, California Partners for Advanced Transportation Technology, and the Berkeley Real-time Intelligent Secure Explainable Systems Lab. Her research involves machine learning, robotics, intelligent systems, and mixed-autonomy mobility. She is the recipient of several fellowships, including the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, the Chancellor’s Fellowship for Graduate Study at UC Berkeley, the National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship, and the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship. She has been awarded the 2018 Council of University Transportation Centers’s Milton Pikarsky Memorial Award, the 2017 ITS Outstanding Graduate Student Award, and the 2016 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems Best Paper Award. 

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Website
Cathy Wu
Civil and Environmental Engineering https://idss.mit.edu/staff/cathy-wu/
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