Chinese students learn about information science through summer program

Associate Professor Jana Diesner taught a course on network analysis to Chinese students participating in the Information Science and Engineering Summer Program this past July. Sponsored by Global Education and Training (GET) at the University of Illinois, the two-week, hands-on program took place at the Urbana campus.

Thirty-nine undergraduates from major Chinese universities participated in the program. In addition to network analysis, they learned about artificial intelligence and control systems in courses taught by faculty in Departments of Computer Science and Mechanical and Industrial Engineering.

GET summer program


"It was exciting and a great honor for us to teach network analysis to some of the brightest minds from various undergraduate programs at top Chinese universities," Diesner said. "As part of this course, the students conducted a research project, and we were absolutely amazed by the projects that the teams carried out in this extremely short amount of time."

Doctoral students Ly Dinh, Rezvaneh (Shadi) Rezapour, and Mihai Avram served as teaching assistants for the course. Meg Edwards, assistant dean for student affairs, and Penny Ames, admissions and records officer, talked with the undergraduates about the degree programs available at the iSchool. 

"It was a unique opportunity for us to interact with the bright and enthusiastic undergraduate students from abroad," Dinh said. "Although the class was only two weeks long, we were able to cover essential theories and methods in network science with tremendous help from the students' hard work and full attentiveness."

Social activities included a trip to Springfield to visit the Illinois State Capitol and Abraham Lincoln sites. The program concluded on August 4 with a graduation lunch at the Illini Union.

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