With the sudden disruption of life at ICS and in communities around the world, our students are facing a quickly altered educational landscape with new challenges in an online learning environment. It may be possible that our students or their families might experience unexpected relocation or even loss of employment.
As we move into our new norm, college experience will need adapt to provide the safest and most academically robust environment possible. Bringing instruction to our students, whether in their dorms or homes, will be an important element of this new environment. To that end, we anticipate a need to provide students with hardware and computing support, whether that may be loaner laptops, hardware kits that might otherwise be found in a lab, or enhancing online connectivity.
Your gift to the ICS Dean's Excellence Fund will support all our students’ ability to pursue what remains a rigorous curriculum at ICS regardless of obstacles related to financial hardship or access to technology.
COVID Research Support
In spite of all the disruption and challenges caused by the pandemic, our faculty have quickly pivoted their research activities to focus on COVID-19, building interdisciplinary teams that improve diagnosis, deliver telemedicine solutions, and inform policy and responses to future outbreaks.
As we submit research funding proposals to federal agencies and foundations that often require lengthy review and approval processes, your generosity will provide us with immediate and much-needed bridge funding to enable and accelerate these interdisciplinary collaborations.
Below is a small sampling of our faculty’s efforts to diagnose or alleviate the effects of the coronavirus:
Xiaohui Xie, Computer Science
In collaboration with School of Medicine colleagues, Xiaohui is exploring a COVID-19 vulnerability scoring system to screen and triage covid-19 patients. His work focuses on the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools that analyze CT scans to detect lung lesions and determine treatment plans for COVID-19 patients.
Pierre Baldi, Computer Science
As the literature piles up, there is a growing urgency to find efficient approaches that can help the medical research community, policymakers, and the general public to keep up with information that is evolving on a daily basis. In collaboration with faculty in Physics and Astronomy, Pierre is helping develop a novel Natural Language Processing (NLP) tool to target COVID-19 by mining the medical literature for information on how the virus incubates and transmits, what therapeutics have been newly proposed against it, and what has been published about ethical and societal considerations.
Kai Zheng, Health Informatics
In collaboration with principal investigators at UCSD and researchers at multiple sites both within and outside the UC system, Kai is working to create a federated COVID-19 data sharing network. He is also working on creating a UC-wide virtual biorepository for storing information on biospecimens collected from COVID-19 patients. At the national level, Kai is partnering with the CDC to help build a COVID-19 patient registry based on data automatically populated from electronic health records. The collection and dissemination of this information will help shape healthcare policy regionally and nationally.
Eric Mjolsness, Computer Science
Leading a large group of machine learning experts in ICS and In collaboration with researchers in the School of Social Sciences, Eric explores algorithmic innovations to accelerate molecular dynamics simulation of the virus’ key proteins. Through these simulations, the virus can be attacked fast by computers, quickly identifying the more promising approaches that can be pursued in the lab.
Vladimir Minin, Statistics and Statistical Theory
Vladimir is collaborating with researchers at the National Institutes of Health, UCI Public Health, and Orange County Health Care Authority on the development of statistical models of SARS-CoV-2 transmission dynamics. These models will be used for forecasting critical care demand and evaluation of mitigation measures on regional and national levels. Vladimir also works with UCI Health Sciences researchers on statistical analyses of SARS-CoV-2 genomic data that are being collected at UCI Medical Center and in other parts of Orange County, CA.
This year, ICS is also raising funds for graduate awards. Please click below to learn more.