The LSA Member Spotlight highlights the interests and accomplishments of a different LSA member each month. This month, its focus is on Jeff Good, Professor and Chair of UB's Linguistics Department. Congratulations!
Congratulations to UB Linguistics PhD Alum Dr. Braden Brown, who has just accepted a two-year postdoctoral position at the University of Missouri, where he will work with Prof. Rebecca Grollemund on an NSF-funded project entitled, “Continuity and divergence in Cameroonian languages: New perspectives on the Bantu genesis”.
UB Linguistics PhD Alum Dr. Stephanie Evers is the winner of the tenth Joseph Greenberg Award from the Association for Linguistic Typology for her dissertation, “To ‘the’ or not to ‘the’: Cross-linguistic correlations between existing morphosyntax and the emergence of definite articles”. The Joseph Greenberg Award recognizes and honours the best piece of typological research embodied in a doctoral dissertation or equivalent in the award period, which in this case was for dissertations filed between 1 January 2019 and 31 December 2020. Congratulations, Stephanie!
Congratulations to PhD student Hanno Beck for being awarded a 2020–2021 Excellence in Teaching Award for Graduate Teaching Assistants by the Graduate School at UB! The award was made on the basis his contributions to teaching in both the German Program and the Linguistics Program.
Dr. Jacobs earned her PhD in Cognitive Psychology in 2017 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Language and Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Dr Faytak earned his PhD in Linguistics in 2018 from UC Berkeley, and is currently a postdoctoral research fellow and lecturer in the Department of Linguistics at The University of California, Los Angeles.
Congratulations to German instructor Lynn Engle, who has been selected as an expert for a three-year project of the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies at Johns Hopkins entitled "Social Divisions and Questions of Identity in Germany and the United States".
Lukas Dickash (Linguistics BA with a Japanese minor, 2016), now an Assistant Language Teacher at ALTIA CENTRAL (Shizuoka, Japan), has been featured in the Alumni Spotlight series of the UB Office of Study Abroad about his path to becoming an Assistant Language Teacher in Japan.
Congratulations to PhD student Luis Ulloa for received a grant from the National Science Foundation entitled "Documentation, Description and Analysis of the Grammar of a Minority Language”, which will support his work on the Shawi language of Peru.
Team Proto’s members are Sougata Saha and Souvik Das, both PhD students in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, and Elizabeth Soper and Erin Pacquetet, both PhD students in the Department of Linguistics. The team is under the direction of Professor Srihari (CSE), and aims to improve the quality of socialbots, such as Amazon Echo’s Alexa, by taking part in the Alexa Prize Socialbot Grand Challenge. In late February, the UB team was one of five teams to qualify for the quarterfinals. After that, the field will be further narrowed, with three teams advancing to the semifinal round. The finals take place in July, with the winner being announced in August 2021. The winning team will receive a prize of $500,000.
Professor Mitsu Shimojo has been selected as a recipient of the 2020-2021 President Emeritus and Mrs. Meyerson Award for Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching and Mentoring for his many contributions to teaching and mentoring students in the Japanese Program and the Asian Studies Program, as well as in off-campus contexts. This award was established through a generous gift by the late UB President Emeritus Martin Meyerson and his wife, Margy Ellen, to recognize exceptional teaching and mentoring at the university. It is the highest university award given specifically for undergraduate mentoring.
Our dear colleague Madeleine Mathiot, Professor emerita at the University at Buffalo died peacefully on December 4, 2020. Madeleine Mathiot received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the Catholic University of America after receiving her M.S. in Linguistics from Georgetown University. Deeply rooted in structuralist methods, Dr. Mathiot forged a unique research path that combined ethnographic, semantic, and fieldwork research strands. Dr. Mathiot fieldwork on Tohono ‘O'odham culminated in a Tohono ‘O'odham-English usage dictionary first published in 1973 and re-published as an Internet resource. In her lexical semantic work, Dr. Mathiot stressed the interweaving of cognitive and cultural aspects of lexical meaning, particularly in her work on folk taxonomy and definitions. She also took an ethnographic approach to the analysis of conversation. Dr. Mathiot always stressed the importance of following a unique research path, even if not popular at the time, and she will be fondly remembered by her students and colleagues.
Congratulations to PhD/MS student Liz Soper, PhD CSE students Sougata Saha and Souvik Das, and Professor Rohini Srihari (CSE; supervisor), who have been selected to the 4th round in the Alexa Grand Challenge. This challenge focused on designing and implementing conversational AI systems (chatbots), and it comes with a $250K research grant to develop a prototype. Nine teams were selected for this first round, and the next involves a $1M prize. The project (named PROTO) focuses on empathetic chatbots that leverage large volumes of dynamic content in order to generate longer, productive conversations on various topics including health. It is a hybrid model employing NLP and question answering methods.
Congratulations to Prof. Wolf Wölck for achieving an important (and difficult!) milestone at UB: The 50 Years of Service Award! Please see http://www.buffalo.edu/celebration-of-academic-excellence/FacultyStaffExcellence.html for further information. Congratulations Wolf!
Alumnus Monty Hill (Skarù·rę Tuscarora Indian Nation) just accepted a postdoc fellowship with McMaster University, to work with Dr. Bryan Maracle, on the Tuscarora Language program and the Oneida language program in London to develop a decentralized network of language revitalization programs. Way to go Monty!
Congratulations to Professor Karin Michelson for being awarded a UB Humanities Institute Faculty Fellowship for the 2020–2021 academic year. These competitive awards provide the fellow with a semester of teaching release to pursue a research project relevant to the humanities. More information can be found here: http://humanitiesinstitute.buffalo.edu/opportunities/for-faculty/hi-faculty-fellowships/ Congratulations, Karin!
Soo Hyun Ryu (M.S. in Computational Linguistics), and currently a researcher at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, has just been accepted to the Psychology program at Michigan University. Congratulations Soo! For more news about current or past M.S. CL students see the CL page.
Congratulations to PhD student Yanwei Jin, on getting his abstract "From speech error to grammaticalization: The case of expletive negation, Yanwei Jin and Jean-Pierre Koenig" accepted at the upcoming CUNY Sentence Processing conference at UMass Amherst (the premier sentence processing conference in North America) as a talk. About 6% of abstracts are accepted as talks.
Congratulations to PhD student Rahekawę̀·rih Monty Hill (Skarù·rę Tuscarora Indian Nation), who has received a Luce Indigenous Knowledge Fellowship for 2020. This fellowship provides Native knowledge holders and knowledge makers the funding and connections necessary to maximize their potential and realize their vision for their communities. It also provides these knowledge holders with the resources to match their existing knowledge, passion and drive to achieve their personal and community goals.
Congratulations to alumna Gabriela Pérez Báez, who has won the LSA’s prestigious Early Career Award, to be presented during a special ceremony at the LSA Annual Meeting on Saturday, January 4, 2020, in New Orleans. The Early Career Award, established in 2010, recognizes scholars early in their career who have made outstanding contributions to the field of linguistics. This award is bestowed for contributions to the documentation of Zapotecan languages, for raising public awareness of language diversity and endangerment, and for leading efforts to train members of speaker communities in North America and Mexico.
The biannual International Conference on Role and Reference Grammar (RRG) will take place on August 19-21, 2019, in Buffalo, New York. It will be held in downtown Buffalo at the University at Buffalo’s Educational Opportunity Center, conveniently located near the downtown theater district, local restaurants, and the Buffalo waterfront.
Alumna Kate Donelson will be takin a Visiting Assistant Professor position at the University of Nevada Reno. Congrats Kate!
Alumna Randi Moore will be taking a Visiting Assistant Professor position at the College of William and Mary this Fall 2019. Congratulations Randi!
Computational Linguistics Alumna Soo Yoon Ryu is now a researcher in the NLP*CL Lab at Korea Advanced Institute for Science and Technology (KAIST). This is a one year contract position, she plans to pursue a PhD after this.
Yanwei Jin has been selected as an award winner in this year’s Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Awards competition. Congratulations!
Linguistics Ph.D. Ardis Eschenberg (UB Alumna) will be the next Windward Community College chancellor at the University of Hawaii. Eschenberg currently serves as vice chancellor for academic affairs at Windward Community College in Kāneoʻhe. Since 2010, she has been at Windward Community College and has also served as vice chancellor for student affairs and dean of language arts, humanities and academic support. For five years, Eschenberg was an academic dean and instructor at Nebraska Indian Community College, which provides for the higher education needs of the Isanti and Umonhon nations. She counseled and advised students who are primarily Native American, low-income, first-generation college students.
Professor Matthew Dryer's paper "On the order of the demonstrative, numeral and noun" just appered in LANGUAGE, the flagship journal of the Linguistic Society of America.
Ph.D. student Hong Mo Kang accepted a Assistant Professor position in a governmental agency as a Korean language faculty.
Various PhD students and faculty are presenting at the 2019 Linguistics Society of America conference:
Various UB PhD students and faculty will be presenting papers at the 4th International Conference of the American Pragmatics Association (AMPRA), to be held in 1-3 November, at the University of Albany, NY:
Soo Hyun Ryu, student in the MS in Computational Linguistics, will be presenting her paper entitled "On the interaction between dependency frequency and thematic fit in sentence processing" at the 2nd Annual Meeting of the Society for Computation in Linguistics, NYC.
Fellowship to Erika Bellingham
Congratulations to PhD student Erika Bellingham, who has been awarded a year-long Betty Patterson Commemorative Fellowship awarded by the Fellowship Fund Inc of Graduate Women Queensland. Way to go, Erika.
PhD. alumna Yen-Ting Lin is now a postdoctoral researcher, working on the subproject “The smart daily life and citizen engagement in digital communities”, as the part of the project "The Rebirth of Community along the Coast: The Memory Representation, Innovation and Transformation of Communities in Transition, Kaohsiung", Center for Humanities and Social Sciences, National Sun Yat-sen University, Taiwan.
Congratulations to PhD student Ali Alshehri for having his QP, "The Principle of Canonical Orientation: A Crosslinguistic Study”, been accepted for publication by Language & Cognition (co-authors: Randy E. Moore, Gabriela Pérez Báez, and Juergen Bohnemeyer).
PhD student Sang-Hee Park will be presenting her research on Gapping at several conferences this Summer, including Sinn und Bedeutung 23 (Barcelona), 25th International Conference on Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar (Tokyo), among other talks. Way to go!
Congratulations to Erika Belingham, PhD student and MC student in Computational Linguistics, for being awarded a Summer internship at Google, CA.
Congratulations to PhD students Thomas St Pierre and Robert Hepburn Grey, who have been awarded prestigious and highly competitive CAS Dissertation Fellowships. Well done, Rob and Tom!
Congratulations to PhD students Hongmo Kang and Thomas St-Pierre, whose abstracts were accepted for presentations at the upcoming CUNY conference on sentence processing, held at UC Davis. Both of Thomas’ abstracts were accepted as poster presentations, and Hongmo’s abstract was accepted as a talk (7% acceptance rate).
Ph.D. students Kiyono Fujinaga and Sang Hee Park will each be presenting a paper at the 44th Annual Conference of the Berkeley Linguistics Society. Sang Hee's paper is entitled "Underspecification and Scope: the case of Gapping", and Kiyono's is entitled "The subjectification and synchronic variations of Japanese adverb jitsuwa and English adverb actually". Congratulations to both!
PhD student Hanno Beck will be busy giving two talks next Spring. One is about "Studying the Footprint of Subjective Adjectives" and will be presented at the DGfS (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Sprachwissenschaft) Stuttgart conference, and the other at a roundtable at the International Congress for Medieval Studies conference in Michigan. Happy travels!
The Linguistics Department and the Confucius Institute are jointly organizing a symposium on October 28-29entitled, “Building a Chinese Language Program for the 21st Century: New Approaches for Multicultural and Multilingual Universities.” The symposium will examine how university departments can build rigorous Chinese programs that meet the goals of the broadest spectrum of students while maintaining academic rigor and operating under resource constraints. Keynote speakers will offer valuable theoretical and practical insights and lead discussion. Speakers include David Honey, Professor of Chinese, Brigham Young University; Lening Liu, Professor of Chinese and Director, Confucius Institute of Chinese Pedagogy, Columbia University; and Kai Li, Senior Lecturer in Chinese, Oberlin College, and Beijing Normal University.
Advanced registration requested.
Look who's talking @ International Cognitive Linguistics Conference
PhD Student Katharine Donelson (in joint work with Randi Moore, Jihye Seong, Jose Antonio Jodar Sanchez and Juergen Bohnemeyer) will be giving a talk entitled “Choosing Landmarks: A Crosslinguistic Study of Variable Landmarks” at the International Cognitive Linguistics Conference in Tartu, Estonia.
ELDP Grant to Yu Li
Congratulations to PhD student Yu Li who has received and Endangered Languages Documentation Programme grant of £10582 to support her dissertation fieldwork on the Zauzou, a Tibeto-Burman language of China.
CSF Award for Young Scientists to Randi Moore
Ph.D. student Randi Moore won the CSF Award for Young Scientists for the Best Presentation at the Spatial Boundaries and Transitions in Language and Interaction Conference, held in Ascona, Switzerland. The award comes with a plaque, a bookbag and 500 swiss francs!
CAS Dissertation Fellowships to Aron Marvel and Josh Benn
Ph.D students Aron Marvel and Josh Benn have been awarded CAS Dissertation Fellowships, which will support them in completing their dissertation research. Congratulations!
Look who’s talking @ HPSG 2017
Ph.D. student Robert Hepburn-Gray will be giving a talk entitled “Against Split Morphology: ‘inflection’, ‘derivation’, and the structure of the SBCG lexicon” at the International Head-driven Phrase Structure Grammar conference, collocated with the Linguistic Institute at the University of Kentucky. Also presenting is JP Koenig, who will be giving a talk entitled “Oneida prepronominal prefixes in Information-Based Morphology”, in joint work with Karin Michelson and Ph.D student Thomas Diaz. Happy conferencing to all!
Look who’s talking @ the 2017 Sentiment Analysis Symposium
Dianna Radpour, a student in our Interdisciplinary Computational Linguistics M.S., will be giving a talk entitled “Sarcasm and its Symptoms” at the 2017 Sentiment Analysis Symposium, to be held in New York City from the 27th to the 28th of June.
AHI Fellowship to Monty Hill
Ph.D student Monty Hill has been awarded an Advanced Humanities Institute Fellowship to help him complete his dissertation. Only four such fellowships were awarded this year by the UB Humanities Institute. Congratulations!
Look who’s talking @ CogSci 2017
Congratulations to Ph.D student Hao Sun and Professor John Pate, who will be presenting their work “The Semantic Spaces of Child-Directed Speech, Child Speech and Adult-directed Speech: A Manifold Perspective” at the CogSci conference taking place in London, UK.
Alumna Craig Kopris receives DEL Fellowship
Craig Kopris, a 2001 Ph.D. Alumna (UB Dissertation entitled “A Grammar and Dictionary of Wyandot”) was awarded a Documenting Endangered Languages Fellowship by the National Science Foundation to write a dictionary of Wyandot (Iroquoian). We are so proud!
Look who’s talking @ DETEC
Congratulations to Ph.D. student Alexandra Lawson, whose paper “Repeating Names: Proper Names Usage is Sensitive to Speaker Expectation” was accepted as a talk at Discourse Expectations: Theoretical, experimental, and computational perspectives (DETEC 2017), to be held at the Max-Planck in Niejmegen this upcoming June. Way to go Ali!
Mark Diamond Research funds awarded to Luis Ulloa and Yu Li
Congratulations to PhD students Luis Ulloa and Yu Li, who have been awarded MDRF grants to support their research.
LSA Fellowship to Dana Glantz
Linguistics undergraduate student Dana Glantz has been awarded a Linguistic Institute Fellowship, to attend the upcoming 2017 LSA Institute. Congratulations!
Award to Thomas St. Pierre
PhD Student Thomas St Pierre has just been received a Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Award. Congratulations!
Award to Erika Bellingham
Congratulations to PhD Student Erika Bellingham, who won one of only four student bursaries to present her paper at the International Pragmatics Conference (IPrA 2017) in Belfast, in July.
Congratulations to Dawei Jin
Ph.D. Alumnus Dawei Jin is now a lecturer in Shanghai Jiao Yong University, China. Congratulations!
Look who’s talking @ IPrA
Erika Bellingham, Sang-Hee Park & Juergen Bohnemeyer will be presenting a paper on “Causality in discourse: crosslinguistic patterns”, in the panel “Linguistic Expressions and Devices that Yield the Implicature of Cause and Effect” organized by Hanazaki Miki (et al.) during the 15th International Pragmatics Conference, Belfast, Northern Ireland, 16-21 July 2017.
Look who’s talking @ Summer LSA Institute
Jürgen Bohnemeyer will be teaching a course entitled “Typology of Spatial Representation” at the 2017 Summer Linguistics Institute, which is taking place in Lexington KY from July 5th to August 1st.
Look who’s talking @ BLS 43
Congratulations to Ph.D. student Hao Sun, who will be presenting a paper entitled “There are more valence alternations than the ditransitive” (co-authored with Professor Jean-Pierre Koenig) at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society.
Mark Diamond Research Fund awards to Holly Keily and Derry Moore
Congratulations to PhD students Holly Keily and Derry Moore for each receiving a Mark Diamond Research Fund award, which will support their dissertation studies.