• May 21st, 2021

May 21, 2021

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Dr. Jeff Gray, professor in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Alabama’s College of Engineering, has been chosen as the new director of the Randall Research Scholars Program beginning June 1, 2021.

A native of Glen Dale, WV, and a first-generation college graduate, Gray received a doctorate in computer science from Vanderbilt University and a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in computer science from West Virginia University, where he was a member of the Honors program.

His research interests are in the areas of software engineering, computer science education, programming languages and human-computer interaction – with a specific interest in opportunities to support interdisciplinary research. Funding to support his research has been granted by the National Science Foundation, DARPA – Defense Advanced Projects Agency, Google, IBM, Air Force, Boeing, College Board and the Department of Education. There have been 43 funded awards for his research, with a total combined dollar value of over $21 million.

Gray has been with The University of Alabama since 2010, with a prior academic appointment at UAB from 2002-2009, and currently serves as the co-director of the Software Engineering Lab. Over the past two decades, he has mentored students at the high school, undergraduate and doctoral levels, where he advised 16 PhD student dissertations. With his students and other colleagues, his research publication activities include 80 journal articles and editorials, 18 book chapters, 173 refereed conference and workshop papers, over 130 posters, 10 demonstrations, 21 tutorials and over 25 panels.

“Dr. Gray has an impressive profile in research, teaching and outreach,” said Dean Tara Williams.  “Even more impressive, however, is his commitment to the student experience and his passion for the interdisciplinary research mission of Randall Research Scholars.  I’m delighted that he is joining the RRS and Honors communities.”

Gray commented that, “From its many achievements and demonstrated commitment to excellence as exemplified by the contributions of current and past students, the Randall Research Scholars Program is a national treasure in the category of undergraduate research. The leadership of past directors, and the most recent guidance by Dr. Shane Sharpe, has curated a program that is a model for all other institutions of higher education. I am very excited about the opportunity to not only help mentor future students, but to also learn from their research results.”

Gray is a National Science Foundation CAREER award recipient and was named the Professor of the Year (Alabama, 2008) by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. He is a Distinguished Member of the Association for Computing Machinery and a Senior Member of the IEEE, currently serving as the chair of the Alabama IEEE Computer Society and the co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal on Software and Systems Modeling (Springer). Gray is also co-chair of Alabama Governor Kay Ivey’s Computer Science Advisory Council, with a recent appointment as one of three higher-education faculty on the College Board’s Development Committee for the AP CS Principles course, with past service on the Education Advisory Council of Code.org. His passion for service and outreach has helped to promote K-12th grade computer science opportunities throughout Alabama and the nation for both students (camps, contests, science fair mentoring) and teachers (professional development). These efforts are founded on the need to diversify and broaden participation in computing by offering opportunities for all students.

The son of Gene and Joan Gray of West Virginia, Gray resides in Tuscaloosa with his wife, Marla, and their four children (Alex, Ty, Paige and Jennifer).

Click here for more information about Dr. Gray, including links to an extended resume/CV.

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