Video: Engineering Students Gain Global Perspective on Technology

It’s a fun, intense, fascinating three-week multi-cultural experience across the Pacific that can change a San Jose State University student’s life. Students who traveled on the Global Technology Institute’s summer 2018 trip to Taiwan kicked off the Charles W. Davidson’s College of Engineering’s Silicon Valley Leaders Symposium on September 13 with a pitch to attract 2019 participants.

The program aims to educate college students on issues of the global economy, technology,energy and the environment while also providing them with a research or entrepreneurial experience. The most recent cohort shares highlights about their lectures and seminars at Chung Yuan Christian University in Jungli, Taiwan, as well as their cultural immersion. Students visited Taiwanese companies and government facilities, art museums, amusement parks, aboriginal villages, night markets and national scenic areas.

Watch the student’s presentation, videos of recent speakers and view upcoming lectures on the Silicon Valley Leaders Symposium website.

Study Finds Tech-Savvy Students May Still Lack Cybersecurity Sense

Abbas Moallem

Abbas Moallem

By David Goll

Though HCI, or the study of human-computer interaction, is widely offered at dozens of American universities, its application in the rapidly growing field of cybersecurity is far less studied, understood or even recognized. Abbas Moallem, an adjunct professor in the Charles W. Davidson College of Engineering’s Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, is on a mission to sound the alarms and raise the profile of the human component in cybersecurity through his undergraduate and graduate courses.

In the middle of the world’s high-tech hub, Moallem regularly surveys swaths of college students to help him research the issue of public awareness of online privacy, cybercrimes, cybersecurity and the importance of user knowledge of those issues. Silicon Valley tech companies hire more SJSU graduates than students from any other university so awareness of cybersecurity is especially pertinent to graduates.

Moallem said because there are no large-scale studies determining the level of HCI/cyber security awareness in the general public, his 180 students provide an excellent sample audience. About one-third exhibit a strong familiarity with the subject.

“It’s very hard to sample a large swath of adult consumers, so my students provide lots of information,” he said. “They’re a young, tech-savvy demographic group.”

The early results of his surveys found that despite their ease with using technology, students have a relatively low HCI/cybersecurity consciousness and don’t always practice “safe” online behavior.

“We must do more to educate students and the larger population about the importance of cybersecurity and its human element,” he said. “Most organizations, whether private companies, public agencies or universities, still approach cybersecurity from the technical side. And there are lots of technical solutions out there. Human factors is still not considered anywhere near as important as technical concerns and solutions. There’s a huge disparity in the amount of money most organizations spend on technical solutions over HCI solutions.”

Moallem recently edited a book, Human-Computer Interaction and Cybersecurity Handbook that provides insight into how understanding human factors could change how companies invest their resources in what is currently a $101 billion industry. Moallem’s book will be among the dozens of works recognized during the annual Author & Artist Awards, Nov. 2, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., in the Grand Reading Room on the eighth floor of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library. The gathering is sponsored by the library, the SJSU Office of the Provost, the SJSU Office of Research and the Spartan Bookstore.

“Cybersecurity has become such a key issue and not only from a coding and technical point of view,” said Jacob Tsao, associate dean of the Extended Studies in the Charles W. Davidson College of Engineering. “The focus needs to be on the human role played in cybersecurity, but there is still so much more time and money spent on the technical level.”

 

Faculty News and Notes for September 2018: Publications, Quotes and More

Department of Film and Theatre Lecturer Kirsten Brandt directed the African-American Shakespeare Company’s production of Richard III in July at the Taube Atrium Theatre in San Francisco. Before becoming a freelance director, she served as artistic director of San Diego’s Sledgehammer Theatre for seven years.

School of Management Associate Professor Gretchen Vogelgesang Lester published “Autocratic Leaders and Authoritarian Followers Revisited: a Review and Agenda for the Future” in The Leadership Quarterly, an article that discusses why people elect leaders who restrict freedom.

An August article in The Guardian about “skim reading” in the digital age and the profound societal effects of that trend referenced the research of iSchool Professor Ziming Liu.

Department of Physics and Astronomy Assistant Professor Thomas Madura spearheaded a STEM camp in Kalamazoo, Mich., for blind and visually impaired students from around the state. The camp was sponsored by the Bureau of Services for Blind Persons (BSBP), a program that helps students transition from high school to postsecondary education or employment.

Department of Economics Assistant Professor Raymond March posted an article on The Independent Institute’s blog titled “If Telemedicine Is Underachieving, Government Is to Blame.” “An unfortunate consequence of any regulation is that it restricts the number of alternative products and services available to consumers,” March wrote.

Communications Studies Professor Matthew Spangler was interviewed about SJSU’s Communications Studies program by MastersinCommunications.com in August. The site’s mission is to help students make informed decisions when planning their academic and professional goals.

The Atlantic Monthly interviewed Department of Sociology Assistant Professor Elizabeth Sweet on the culture of “stifling” masculinity. Sweet, who studies gender in 20th-century children’s toys, reported that American gender categories “are more rigid now than at any time in history.”

Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging Chair Ashwini Wagle gave the keynote address at Silicon Valley’s Rise Against Hunger event in July. An international hunger relief organization, Rise Against Hunger aims to end hunger by 2030 and operates meal packaging locations in 25 cities throughout the U.S. and at five international locations. “When you package a meal with Rise Against Hunger, you are simultaneously empowering people to become nourished and live a healthy life,” Wagle said.

KTVU interviewed School of Management Professor Robert Chapman Wood about the announced closing of all Orchard Supply Hardware stores. “Somebody decided that OSH was a small problem in a company with really big problems. And so they gotta close it,” Wood said.

Faculty Promotion: Lili Luo

Lili Luo

Lili Luo

Lili Luo

Promotion to Professor

Years at SJSU: 11

Department: School of Information

RSCA focus: Reference and information services, consumer health information services, and research methods education and training for library and information professionals

Professor Lili Luo sees her area of research as critical to helping libraries and librarians facilitate user’s access to quality information and assisting them in their information-seeking process. She has been especially interested in understanding how text messaging and other new technologies can be used as a way for reference librarians to effectively communicate with users. She has also explored ways to prepare public librarians to enhance health literacy of those who visit their venues. A prolific author, she has published one book, five book chapters, 22 published or accepted articles for peer-reviewed journals and has presented at 18 conferences in the past five years.

“I truly enjoy being part of the SJSU community, especially working with our students in the Masters of Library and Information Science program,” Luo said. “They are driven and passionate about librarianship and the incredible value that libraries can bring to the community in this rapidly evolving information landscape.”

Luo has served on SJSU’s Program Planning Committee and served as the director of the College of Health and Human Sciences’ Center for Applied Research on Human Services from 2016-18, and has been a doctoral supervisor for students enrolled in the Gateway PhD program.

Note: Congratulations to the 43 faculty members who received tenure and/or promotion for 2018-19. We have invited each faculty member to participate in a series of posts profiling their teaching, service, and research, scholarship and creativity activities. Those faculty who opted to participate will be featured throughout the fall semester on the Academic Spotlight blog and the digital sign in the Administration Building lobby.

 

Faculty Promotion: Katherine D. Harris

Katherine D. Harris

Katherine D. Harris

Katherine D. Harris

Promotion to Professor

Years at SJSU: 14

Department: English and Comparative Literature

RSCA focus: Pedagogy and Digital Pedagogy, British Romanticism and Romantic-era women’s poetry, Gothic novels, Victorian novels and “Afterings”/Adaptations, Nineteenth-century culture and literature, Nineteenth-century reading practices, Bibliography, Textual Studies and History of the Book, Digital Humanities, Feminist theory and Women’s Studies.

Professor Katherine D. Harris is on sabbatical this fall to complete work on several articles associated with Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models & Experiments, a peer-reviewed collection of curated teaching materials under contract with the Modern Language Association. She is also the author of two books on British literary annuals and has been integral in coordinating the “Bicentennial Celebration – Frankenstein at 200.” The year-long project has included a Spring 2018 class, a panel and student poster session on technology ethics in Silicon Valley, several student-run films, performance, and discussion events, and a recent panel in which speakers discussed Mary Shelley’s novel from different Humanities perspectives.

As a professor, she enjoys “meeting SJSU’s wide array of students and working with them towards intellectual growth.” Along with her teaching and scholarly work, Harris has been an advocate for low-cost open educational resources.

Note: Congratulations to the 43 faculty members who received tenure and/or promotion for 2018-19. We have invited each faculty member to participate in a series of posts profiling their teaching, service, and research, scholarship and creativity activities. Those faculty who opted to participate will be featured throughout the fall semester on the Academic Spotlight blog and the digital sign in the Administration Building lobby.