Using Computer Science to Advance Medicine

“So my name is Hafiz Imtiaz and I am a graduate
research assistant in the ACD department at Rutgers University and I have been working
with Professor Sarwate for the last one year. What we are working on is differential privacy,
so it’s not directed or related with any diseases or anything, it’s like ensuring security while
ensuring the validity of the algorithm. I am from Bangladesh and I was a [inaudible]
technology, then I came to the American states in this university as a PhD student in the
fall of 2014. My parents are both American doctors, so they are actively doing research,
so they also encourage me. Growing up I saw them doing research and helping
each other with the research, so I think that that also, on some level, also encouraged
me to come into the research field. I have been working on signal processing and
also emit processing for my undergrad thesis and also for my Master’s thesis. So the things
that I am doing here I can say that they are not exactly directly related with the things
that I have been doing in my undergrad or my MS, but they are actually a continuation
of those research. I was looking forward to a career in academia,
so I’ve been planning to be a faculty member at my university. I like that I can – I
mean I think that I can improve something with my critical thinking for people in this
lab and professors everywhere. So three of us are now working on this differential
privacy regime. So sometimes we collaborate and share our ideas between us to find a new
direction or something. One of the most challenging things to me after
coming here was the mathmatical sophistication that I was not used to but I think I am catching
up and I think I am trying to overcome the obstacles. It’s a very technical and I would
say sophisticated area of some bigger area so if we can achieve what we are trying to
do, it might help doing some other stuff more easily or precisely. I would say that research is – if you feel
research is very interesting and you always get to discover new things, you always get
to learn new things. You learn to look at things like algorithms from different angles
and once you learn one algorithm, then you can apply to some other area that has not
been thought of before.”

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