Student in CSSE awarded invitation to graduate cohort for women

Published: Apr 3, 2023 5:00 PM

By Joe McAdory

Nilanjana Raychawdhary, a second-year graduate student in computer science and software engineering (CSSE), has an opportunity to expand existing research ideas through networking and learning from others by earning an invitation to the Computing Research Association (CRA)-Widening Participating (WP) Graduate Cohort for Women, April 20-22 in San Francisco. Attendees have the opportunity to interact with senior female computing-related researchers and professionals who will share pertinent information on graduate school survival skills and personal insights.

“By attending the special CRA-WP cohort, I hope to learn about the latest advancements and trends in the field of computer science research, particularly in my area of focus,” said Raychawdhary, who will join CSSE classmate and graduate student Prashamsa Pandey at the conference. “I would also like to connect with other researchers and experts in the field to expand my network and gain insights into different approaches and methodologies. Ultimately, I hope to bring back new knowledge and perspectives that I can apply to my research and education, helping me to further develop my skills and make meaningful contributions to the field.”

CRA-WP stands out from other conferences because it focuses on advancing the interests of women and other underrepresented groups in computer science research.

“The CRA-WP cohort provides an inclusive and supportive environment for attendees to share their research, learn from each other, and build relationships with other researchers and professionals,” Raychawdhary said. “Additionally, the conference provides various opportunities for attendees to engage in mentoring, networking, and career development activities, which are crucial for supporting the advancement and success of underrepresented groups in computing. The CRA-WP conference is a platform where attendees can not only showcase their research but also gain valuable insights and connections that can help them advance their careers in computer science research.”

Cheryl Seals, the Charles W. Barkley Professor in computer science and software engineering, serves as Raychawdhary’s advisor and is thrilled to see her student have this opportunity.

“As a graduate student with a strong aptitude for computing, Nilanjana excels in her academic pursuits,” said Seals, who also serves as an Auburn ELATES fellow and leads the university’s Computer Human Interaction Lab. “In addition, she wholeheartedly supports our students as a graduate teaching assistant. Her collaborations with our lab have yielded numerous publications as a new researcher, and her professional demeanor makes her a pleasure to work alongside.

Raychawdhary is eager to contribute her research to the academic community.

“Computer science is a rapidly growing field and making a difference requires a combination of technical expertise, creativity, and a passion for innovation,” she said. “By continuously learning, experimenting and collaborating with others, one can make meaningful contributions to the field and inspire others to do the same.”

Raychawdhary focuses her research on sentiment analysis which entails developing and improving machine learning models that can accurately and efficiently analyze sentiment (emotional meaning) in low resource languages. She is also interested in exploring new applications of sentiment analysis, such as in social media and online reviews, and investigating the ethical considerations and implications of using sentiment analysis in decision-making processes.

She praised the university and CSSE for offering students a diverse allotment of courses and research opportunities.

“The university's faculty and staff are also dedicated to supporting students' academic and professional growth, providing mentorship, advising, and resources to help them achieve their goals,” she said. “I am thankful to my department to support me. As a working graduate teaching assistant, Auburn University offers a variety of resources to develop my professional skills, including workshops, and opportunities for networking and collaboration, with a healthy work environment. I am very thankful to my Ph.D. advisor, Dr. Cheryl Seals, who encourages and supports me every time.”

Raychawdhary was quick to recommend Auburn’s CSSE program to prospective students, citing rigorous academics, experienced faculty and research opportunities.

“Overall, Auburn University provides a dynamic and supportive environment for students pursuing computer science and software engineering, with a strong focus on academic excellence, research and career readiness.”

Media Contact: Joe McAdory,, 334.844.3447
Nilanjana Raychawdhary

Nilanjana Raychawdhary

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