Teaching basic lab skills
for research computing

2016 Election: Dhavide Aruliah

My name is Dhavide Aruliah. I am standing for election to the Steering Committee of Software Carpentry for 2016.

Who am I?

By training, I am an applied mathematician and computer scientist. From 2004 to 2009, I was a tenure-track assistant professor at UOIT (the University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Oshawa, ON, Canada). From 2009 to 2015, I was an associate professor with tenure at UOIT. In mid-2015, I left my academic career to join Continuum Analytics.

What connection do I have with Software Carpentry?

In 2011, I lead a Software Carpentry graduate reading course (with Greg Wilson’s blessing) at UOIT. Later, in 2012, when Software Carpentry converged on the bootcamp model of delivery, I shadowed Greg teaching a few bootcamps and eventually started leading and organizing bootcamps myself. All said, I have volunteered at over a dozen Software Carpentry bootcamps in various roles. Software Carpentry has been a great source of inspiration for me through a significant transition in my professional life. I am genuinely humbled by the vibrant and dynamic young people (not-so-young, in my case) the Software Carpentry community unites.

What do I want to do for Software Carpentry?

I want Software Carpentry to help serve as a bridge into industry for young academic scientists. There are far more PhD graduates than available academic faculty jobs; simple arithmetic dictates that most graduate-degree holders will have to find work in the private sector. Unfortunately, the disconnect between academia and industry is daunting to cross for many graduate students and postdocs. To my mind, Software Carpentry has been enormously successful in connecting and nurturing talented scientists from diverse intellectual backgrounds. There is tremendous potential for this network to engage industrial partners to everyone’s benefit. My hope is that my past academic career and my present industrial one will provide a useful perspective for the Steering Committee and the larger Software Carpentry community.

What relevant experience can I bring to the Software Carpentry Steering Committee?

For several years, I held elected posts for the Canadian Applied & Industrial Mathematics Society (CAIMS). From 2007 through 2010, I was a Member-At-Large on the CAIMS Board and, from 2010 to 2014, I was the CAIMS Treasurer for two successive terms.

As an academic at UOIT, I helped develop a number of graduate and undergraduate programs and served as Program Director for two different programs. As a Program Director, I enjoyed getting to know the students well and advocating on their behalf to the university. I also mentored numerous undergraduate and graduate students while at UOIT. Mentoring students is the part of my academic career I miss the most. Software Carpentry is, above everything else, a community that supports budding scientists so I welcome the opportunity to scratch this particular itch of mine through the Steering Committee.


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