McCarthy receives innovation award

iSchool master's student Mark McCarthy received the 2018 Alexis Wernsing Innovation Award at this spring's Innovation Celebration, hosted by the Champaign County Economic Development Corporation in partnership with the University of Illinois, Parkland College, and community sponsors. The award recognizes “an individual or team from the University of Illinois that has channeled their experience living with a disability into positive change through the creation of new products, environments, or protocols that enhance quality of life.”

Mark McCarthy with Provost Andreas Cangellaris
Mark McCarthy with Provost Andreas Cangellaris
Hoemann-Perrone Photography

McCarthy was honored for his Access Illinois web app, which integrates existing accessibility maps on campus with Google Maps, allowing individuals to discover walking directions to a destination and the locations of accessible entrances, classrooms, and restrooms. The app earned his team first place at HackCulture, a humanities-focused hackathon held last year at the University Library.

"This award is due in large part to my iSchool professors and other mentors for helping me to achieve things I never thought possible," McCarthy said. "I also want to thank my colleagues and close friends Matt Arensdorf (Computer Science) and Emily Chen (Linguistics) for their hard work on making Access Illinois what it is. Without them, it never would've been done."

"I hope this can serve as an example of the many things that are possible here at the iSchool and the University as a whole. We plan further development still, aiming to add more functionality to the web app."

McCarthy received his bachelor's degree in East Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Illinois and minored in informatics and Asian American studies. He would like to work in user experience and accessible information architecture after finishing his master's degree in information management.

Updated on
Backto the news archive

Related News

Walkow selected for Mozilla Open Leaders Program

Samantha Walkow, an Informatics PhD student advised by Assistant Professor Matthew Turk, has been accepted into the Mozilla Open Leaders Program. The 14-week mentorship and project management program focuses on internet health and openness. Walkow is part of a cohort in the "culture track," in which participants learn how to design and build an open culture that promotes participation and inclusion.

Sam Walkow

Wilkin wins 2019 Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award

iSchool Affiliate Professor John Price Wilkin, Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Dean of Libraries and University Librarian, has been named the 2019 winner of the Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award. Wilkin will receive a cash award and citation during an ALCTS event at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC.

John Wilkin

Stodden elected Member-at-Large for AAAS section

Associate Professor Victoria Stodden has been elected Member-at-Large for the Statistics section of The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). AAAS is an international, nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing science, engineering, and innovation around the world for the benefit of all people. As a Member-at-Large, Stodden will support the Statistics section's steering group in its responsibilities, which includes nominating and reviewing Fellows as well as proposing and reviewing symposia for the AAAS Annual Meeting. She will serve a four-year term, starting in February.

Victoria Stodden

Chu receives 2019 EMIERT Distinguished Librarian Award

Affiliated faculty member Clara Chu, director of the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs, is the recipient of the 2019 American Library Association Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT) Distinguished Librarian Award. The Distinguished Librarian Award recognizes significant accomplishments in library services that are national or international in scope and include improving, spreading, and promoting multicultural librarianship.

Clara Chu