NAME: Veena Krish
EDUCATION BSE/MSE in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania, currently enrolled in a PhD program in Computer Science at SBU
RESEARCH INTERESTS: Security and Machine Learning
CURRENT RESEARCH I’m interested in the security of machine learning systems, especially those applied to emerging medical technologies.
FUTURE GOALS: I hope that my work will help our society have more trust in critical systems (such as those used for healthcare) that are based on complex algorithms.
Why did you want to be a part of GWiSE?
I was looking for a community at SBU that offers support for dealing with the unique challenges facing women in STEM. I also think it’s important to be frequently exposed to the achievements made by my female classmates and reminded of the opportunities available to me.
What/who got you interested in your field?
I spent a few years developing my senior engineering thesis into a medical device company (we were trying to build a non-invasive diagnostic tool for severe heart failure). The problems we faced along the way made me interested in the weaknesses of machine learning solutions to biomedical problems — such as bias, fragility, and security.
When did you know you were interested in pursuing a degree in science/engineering?
When I graduated high school, bioengineering had started to gain a national spotlight (rise of nanotechnology, tissue engineering, brain-computer interfaces…). I was attracted by these emerging fields and knew that I wanted to pursue a degree in STEM.
What do you think needs to happen for there to be more women in science/engineering?
All parts of the STEM pipeline need improvement — from more opportunities and encouragement for girls in school to greater salary transparency and parental leave. Overall, I think GWISE can help by facilitating mentorship and promoting a general awareness of challenges facing women in STEM.
Most interesting place you have visited: The ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia
Favorite thing to do on Long Island: Spending hours browsing at Book Revue in Huntington — I can’t wait to go back in person.
Best sunrise/sunset seen to date: On the top of the Mount Ijen volcano in Indonesia — I spent a college semester in Singapore and had the incredible opportunity to backpack around SE Asia.