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Rudi Chen wins the Jessie W. H. Zou Memorial Award

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The sixth annual Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research has been awarded to graduating student Rudi Chen.

Rudi was nominated by Professor Peter van Beek, with whom he worked as an NSERC undergraduate research assistant. He is completing Bachelor of Computer Science degree.

Rudi's research project was on passive autofocusing, a computational problem that arises in digital photography. The goal of the research was to discover improved algorithms for this task using supervised machine learning techniques. He contributed to two publications:

  • An autofocus heuristic for digital cameras based on supervised machine learning
  • Improving the accuracy and low-light performance of contrast-based autofocus using supervised machine learning

2017 award nominees

Strong nominations in support of Shimeng Huang, Peter MacDonald, Cameron MeanyChristopher Salahub, Zhucheng Tu and David Urbanik were also put forward for this year's Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research this year.


About the Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research

Professor Ming Li and his family have created this award in honour and memory of his late wife, Jessie Wenhui Zou.

Jessie was born August 27, 1968 in Wuhan, China. She received a PhD degree from Wuhan University in physics when she was 26 years old. Jessie loved the field of finance and continued to pursue her studies and graduated from the University of Waterloo’s statistical finance master’s program in 2000. During this time, she also studied computer science at Waterloo and took a course in Java programming (CS 134). Upon graduation, she worked at the Bank of Montreal, specializing in risk control management.

With this award, the family wishes to support research activities at the undergraduate level within the Faculty of Mathematics to carry on Jessie’s passion for education.

The Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research is valued at $1,000 and presented annually to an undergraduate student enrolled in his or her final year of any program within the Faculty of Mathematics. Students must have demonstrated excellence in research and have been nominated by a faculty member who has supervised that research. The awardee is chosen by the Faculty of Mathematics Research Advisory Committee, chaired by the associate dean, research.

See past awardees and nominees:

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