Faculty Mentors

Ziqian (Cecilia) Dong, Ph.D.

Ziqian (Cecilia) Dong, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator, REU program

Ziqian (Cecilia) Dong, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at New York Institute of Technology. She was awarded the Hashimoto Prize for the best Ph.D. dissertation in Electrical Engineering, NJIT. She is the recipient of 2006 and 2007 Hashimoto Fellowship for outstanding scholarship and recipient of the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame Graduate Student Award for her inventions in network switches. She is the recipient of the NYIT Presidential Engagement Award in Student Engagement in Research and Scholarship.

Her research interests include architecture design and analysis of high-performance packet switches, data center networks, network security and forensics, wireless sensor networks, and assistive medical devices. She held consultant positions at industry such as AT&T and BOC Gases. She holds 4 patents and 3 invention disclosures. She has 12 refereed journal publications, 27 refereed conference publications, 2 book chapters, and numerous poster presentations with her students. She engages students on both undergraduate and graduate levels in her research projects and published with them.

Kiran Balagani, Ph.D.

Kiran Balagani, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Kiran Balagani co-directs the cybersecurity laboratory in NYIT's School of Engineering and Computing Sciences, and conducts research in behavioral biometrics, biometric security, privacy, anomaly detection, and applied machine learning. His research has appeared in several leading peer-reviewed journals and conferences. He has three U.S. patents related to network-centric attack detection. In addition, Balagani teaches graduate and undergraduate courses such as Computer Networks, Artificial Intelligence, and Network and Perimeter Security. He also created the new graduate course on Biometrics.

Prior to NYIT, Balagani was a Research Assistant Professor at the Center for Secure Cyberspace, Louisiana Tech University. He received his Ph.D. in computational analysis and modeling, his M.S. in mathematics and computer science from Louisiana Tech University, and his B.S. in computer science and engineering from Bangalore University.

Paolo Gasti, Ph.D.

Paolo Gasti, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Paolo Gasti’s research focuses on behavioral biometrics, privacy-preserving biometric authentication and identification, secure multi-party protocols, and network security. His recent work includes protocols for secure genomic computation, document similarity, document caching. and distributed denial-of-service detection and prevention in future internet architectures. He served as a member of the NDN project, which is a National Science Foundation-sponsored initiative with the goal of designing a new network architecture that will eventually replace the current internet. His work has been featured in articles in the New Scientist and MIT Technological Review. Gasti worked as a research scholar at University of California, Irvine and received a Fulbright scholarship, under which he visited Johns Hopkins University. He received his Ph.D. in computer science from University of Genoa, Italy, and his research pertained to the design of cryptographic schemes and network security.

Huanying (Helen) Gu, Ph.D.

Huanying (Helen) Gu, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Computer Science

Huanying (Helen) Gu has been an Associate Professor of Computer Science at NYIT's Manhattan campus since 2009. Prior to joining the SoECS faculty, she was an Associate Professor of Health Informatics at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. She is a research associate of Structural Analysis of Biomedical Ontologies Center at New Jersey Institute of Technology.

Gu has taught a variety of courses at graduate and undergraduate level. In addition to teaching, her research interests include controlled terminologies, ontologies, object-oriented modeling, conceptual modeling, data mining, and medical informatics with an emphasis on controlled biomedical terminologies. Gu's research has been supported by the National Institute of Health (NIH), the UMDNJ foundation, PDR network, and NYIT ISRC grants. She has served as a reviewer for journals and conferences on medical informatics, and served in doctoral dissertation committees for computer science and biomedical informatics.

Tao Zhang, Ph.D.

Tao Zhang, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Electrical & Computer Engineering

Tao Zhang received her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from the University of Texas at Dallas in 2003 and 2005, respectively. Her research interests span wireless communication and networking, cloud computing, WDM optical networks, and network security focusing on the design and analysis of network architectures and protocols. Zhang is the principal investigator of two National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded projects. She frequently serves on NSF proposal review panels. A senior member of the IEEE since 2007, Zhang serves as a program chair of IEEE Big Data Security 2016, SmartCom 2016, and IEEE CS Cloud 2015. She has been a technical committee member in numerous IEEE conferences, including ICC, Globecom, and Infocom. In addition, Zhang has served as a reviewer for numerous IEEE journals including IEEE Transactions on Network, IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications, IEEE Selected Areas in Communications, and IEEE Communication Magazine.

N. Sertac Artan, Ph.D.

N. Sertac Artan, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

N. Sertac Artan received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from New York University (formerly Polytechnic University). He was on the faculty of the New York University School of Engineering before he joined New York Institute of Technology. He also worked as an ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) Design Engineer and designed integrated circuits for commercial, academic and military applications. Artan served in the organizing committees of the ACM/IEEE Symposium on Architectures for Networking and Communications Systems (ANCS), and IEEE Sarnoff Symposium in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Artan’s current research interests include low-power embedded systems and VLSI circuits for implantable medical devices, efficient algorithms for epileptic seizure detection and prediction, and end-to-end optimization of chronic sensory systems.

Jonathan Voris, Ph.D.

Jonathan Voris, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Jonathan Voris received his Ph.D. from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Polytechnic Institute of NYU in Brooklyn, N.Y. in 2012. He has bachelor's and master’s degrees in computer science from Stevens Institute of Technology. Prior to joining the faculty of NYIT's Computer Science Department, Voris had appointments as an adjunct assistant professor in the Columbia University Computer Science Department and as a postdoctoral research scientist in Columbia's Intrusion Detection Systems Lab. Before his academic career, he worked as a software engineer and network manager for companies in the New York metropolitan area.

Voris conducts research in the security, privacy, and usability of systems, particularly emerging mobile and embedded platforms. His earliest academic work involved the development of protocols for reconciling policy conflicts in a privacy preserving fashion. He has identified serious vulnerabilities in embedded systems and designed appropriate responses, developed novel methods for establishing secure communication channels between mobile devices, and investigated how deception and entertainment can be applied to improve system security while maintaining a high level of usability. He has also created mechanisms for authenticating users via innovative biometric modalities.

Wenjia Li, Ph.D.

Wenjia Li, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Computer Science

Wenjia Li, Ph.D., specializes in cybersecurity, computer networks, and mobile computing, especially security, trust, and privacy issues in wireless networks, cyber-physical systems (CPS) such as intelligent transportation systems, internet of things (IoT), and mobile social networks. In addition to teaching various graduate courses such as algorithms and programming languages, Li is also a very active researcher. He served in the organizing committee for various prestigious international conferences such as ACM WiSec 2015, IEEE Sarnoff 2015, IEEE IPCCC 2014, etc. He also served as program committee member for many well-famed international conferences including IEEE GLOBECOM, IEEE WCNC, IEEE IPCCC, IEEE MDM, etc. Moreover, he reviews papers for many top-tier peer-reviewed journals, such as IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems (TPDS), IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications (TWC), IEEE Transactions on Dependable and Secure Computing (TDSC), and IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security (T-IFS), etc. His research is supported by the US Department of Transportation (US DOT) Region 2 University Transportation Research Center (UTRC).

Anand Santhanakrishnan, Ph.D.

Anand Santhanakrishnan, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering

Anand Santhanakrishnan’s current areas of research include a diverse range of topics like data analytics for dynamics of Wikipedia and social media, spectrum management and security in dynamic spectrum access networks and covert timing channels, biometrics and security in tele-robotics and molecular communications for engineering bacteria to cure cancer. Santhanakrishnan has experience in standardization of architecture and mobility management for the 4G-LTE wireless systems, where he represented Samsung Electronics in 3GPP and IEEE Standards meetings. He also represented Stevens Institute of Technology in the 1900.3A study group meetings on the standardization of security of cognitive radio devices.

Santhanakrishnan received his Ph.D. degree from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India, in 2004. His thesis on performance analysis of resource allocation schemes in cellular networks was awarded the best thesis in the Division of Electrical Sciences (including the Departments of Electrical Engineering, Telecommunications Engineering, Micro Electronics, Computer Science and System Sciences and Automation).

Program Manager

Marta A. Panero, Ph.D.
Associate, Strategic Partnerships; Adjunct Professor

Marta A. Panero, Ph.D. works with the dean of NYIT School of Engineering and Computing Sciences on the coordination of NYIT’s Entrepreneurship and Technology Innovation Center and on the development and funding of multidisciplinary initiatives. Currently, she coordinates a multinational educational effort that incorporates business, engineering, and environmental education to provide technically innovative skills training to support the workforce that will implement cleaner production practices in Latin America. With previous appointments at New York University and the New York Academy of Sciences, her research interests span from sustainable economics to industrial ecology, material flow accounting and pollution prevention, to greening transportation and freight logistics. Panero received her Ph.D. in economics from the New School for Social Research with a concentration in economic development and environmental economics. She graduated Summa cum Laude from Fordham University with a B.A. in Social Studies. Panero grew up in Latin America and is fluent in English and Spanish.