Bard College Faculty Member Valerie Barr Elected a 2022 Fellow of the American Association for the Advance of Science | Local Announcements

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON – Valerie Barr, Margaret Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Computer Science at Bard College, was elected a 2022 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Barr, who teaches in the Computer Science Program, is “recognized for outstanding contributions to computer science education and increasing diversity in the computer fields,” writes the AAAS.

“I am honored that the AAAS Computer Science Department recognizes diversity work in computer science,” said Barr. “I look forward to doing this work as part of the NSF-funded Alliance for Identity-Inclusive Computing Education, led by Dr. Nicki Washington and Shaundra Daily at Duke University and locally as we develop curricula that introduce computers to students in all disciplines covered by the Bard Network.”

“Margaret Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Computer Science Valerie Barr was recognized as an outstanding scientist, educator and pioneering leader in higher education. Professor Barr’s commitment to increasing diversity in computer science has far-reaching implications for transformative curricula and pedagogy. Her work highlights the critical importance of computation as it challenges liberal arts institutions to expand our understanding of the interdependence of STEM and humanities. We are honored to welcome her strong expertise and vision as she assumes faculty leadership at Bard,” said Deirdre d’Albertis, Dean of the College and Professor of English.

Barr is the second Bard faculty member to be honored with this AAAS designation. David and Rosalie Rose Distinguished Professor of Science, Mathematics, and Computing Felicia Keesing, who teaches in the biology program, was elected a 2021 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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Valerie Barr, Margaret Hamilton Distinguished Professor of Computer Science, is a pioneering computer scientist who has been a national leader in efforts to expand participation in computers and connect the field to a variety of liberal arts disciplines. Coming from Mount Holyoke College, Bard, where she was Chair of Computer Science, she is excited to find out what students, and not just computer science students, “need to know about computers to actively critique and challenge the current pace and impact of the technological change.”

In addition to teaching, Barr has been involved in curriculum development and computer education. Her research projects have been repeatedly funded by the National Science Foundation over the past two decades. Her research interests also include reanalyzing college graduation data to better identify and understand long-standing trends in gender, race, and ethnicity, and software testing, particularly related to artificial intelligence and language processing systems. In addition to Mount Holyoke, she has taught at Union College, Hofstra University, the Pratt Institute, and Rutgers University. She received her BA from Mount Holyoke College; MS from New York University; and PhD from Rutgers University. She has been with the Bard Faculty since 2022.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the Science family of journals, has elected more than 500 scientists, engineers, and innovators from around the world and from all disciplines to the Class of 2022 AAAS Fellows, a of the most prestigious awards within the scientific community. The newly elected fellows are honored for their scientific and socially remarkable achievements over the course of their careers. View the Class of 2022 AAAS Fellows here.

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This year’s class advanced their fields and paved the way for scientific advances that benefit society. They bring diverse and novel thinking, innovative approaches and passion that help solve the world’s most complex problems. The new class comes from academic institutions, laboratories and observatories, hospitals and medical centers, museums, global corporations, nonprofit organizations, institutes, and government agencies (including the US Presidential Administration).

New Fellows will receive a certificate, gold and blue rosette pins (representing science and technology, respectively) to commemorate their election, and will be celebrated in Washington, DC, in the summer of 2023. They will also be featured in the AAAS News & Notes Natural Sciences section in February 2023.

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