UT-SA Assistant Prof Wins NSF 'Up and Comer' Grant

The National Science Foundation awarded Carola Wenk, an assistant professor of computer science at the University of Texas-San Antonio, a five-year, $400,000 "Faculty Early Career Development" award to study "geometric shape handling."

The grant, dubbed the "Career" award, is considered the NSF's most prestigious honor for junior faculty members, according to the NSF. "It is designed to support exceptionally promising college and university faculty members who are committed to the integration of research and education," NSF said in its announcement.

Wenk, who joined UTSA in 2004, is working on interdisciplinary research connecting computing and biology and real-world applications.

For instance, Wenk and her students are working to develop computational tools to analyze two-dimensional gels that could help determine the composition of protein samples, a key to
developing pharmaceutical products.

She is also working on using data from GPS receivers in school buses and taxis to develop real-time traffic estimation and prediction systems.

"I would like to apply similar technology here in San Antonio and maintain a database for each road segment to determine current travel situations using GPS receivers in cars traveling all over this area," Wenk said.

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About the Author

Paul McCloskey is contributing editor of Syllabus.

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