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The Portuguese Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education visits Carnegie Mellon University

The Portuguese Minister for Science, Technology and Higher Education, Manuel Heitor, visited Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh on November 29th and 30th.

Minister Manuel Heitor was accompanied by CMU Portugal National Director Nuno Nunes and by the Program´s Executive Director in Portugal Sílvia Castro, as well as by Director at CMU José M. F. Moura and by the Associate Director of the Program at CMU Megan Flohr. The visit focused on strengthening the cooperation between Portugal, Carnegie Mellon University, and Industry through the Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program.

Minister Heitor held meetings with CMU’s Provost James Garrett; Dean William Sanders, College of Engineering; and Dean Martial Hebert, School of Computer Science, to discuss the main initiatives of the Phase III of the Program including the two Calls for Exploratory Research Programs (ERPs) supporting 13 research projects, the Call for Large Scale Collaborative Research projects (LSCRP) supporting 12 large research projects, the dual degree PhD programs with currently 24 students enrolled, and the student and faculty exchange visitors programs.

Manuel Heitor met with several faculty and students. In one of the sessions, he had a meeting with three ERP CMU PIs: Sheng Shen (Intelligent Beamforming Metasurfaces), Justine Sherry (SyNAPSE), and Louis-Phillippe Morency (Automatic generation of humor for social robots).

This session, was followed by three workshops addressing the themes of the Program’s Large-Scale Collaborative Research Projects:
• Understanding Conversations to Improve Productivity led by Nuno Nunes, and featuring Alex Rudnicky (ifetch), Alan Black, Craig Stewart (Unbabel, MAIA), Ruben Martins (GOLEM) and Jonathan Aldrich (GOLEM);
• Vehicular Technologies, Waste Management and Safer Forests led by Justine Sherry, and featuring Mitch Small (BEE2WasteCrypto), George Kantor (Safeforest), and Peter Steenkiste (FLOYD);
• Improving Machine Learning and Applications in Healthcare led by Pedro Ferreira (IntelligentCare), and featuring Christos Faloutsos (AIDA), Asim Smailagic (TAMI), and Carmel Majidi (Wow).

The Portuguese Minister had lunch and engaged in discussion with 17 Dual Degree Ph.D. students currently at CMU and some of their CMU advisors .

Finally, there were meetings with CMU faculty, for example, with Professor Peter Adams, Erica Fuchs, and Granger Morgan discussing decarbonization, and Professor Soummya Kar discussing the LSCRP project Building Hope and a collaboration with REN, the power transport company in Portugal.

The two days visit was an excellent opportunity for the Portuguese Minister to hear about the most recent achievements of the CMU Portugal Program directly from people who are involved in its different areas, from education to research. The agenda including the complete list of the participants in the visit can be found here.

Click for the Visit Full Agenda here.