Alex Endert ('12)
Associate Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
Class of ’12
I am an associate professor in the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. I direct the Visual Analytics Lab and conduct research to help people make sense of data through interactive visualizations and visual analytic systems. This contributes to disciplines including information visualization, human-computer interaction, and visual analytics.
Our lab’s research is also often tested in practice in domains, such as intelligence analysis, cyber security, manufacturing safety, and others. Our research papers are published at premier venues in visualization and human-computer interaction, including the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, of which I actively serve as an associate editor. In 2018, I was awarded a National Science Foundation CAREER Award for my work on visual analytics by demonstration. In 2013, my work on semantic interaction was awarded the IEEE Visual and Graphics Technical Committee Pioneers Group Doctoral Dissertation Award, and the Virginia Tech Computer Science Best Dissertation Award. In my free time, I enjoy spending time outside (golfing, camping, hiking, and so on).
How did the department equip you for the ‘real world’?
While anyone that knows me might suggest, I’m still waiting for the “real world” to start. I do think that my time at Virginia Tech has prepared me quite well. Jokes aside, the curriculum and mentorship at Virginia Tech has served me well throughout my career thus far. Courses taught me challenging and useful technical skills; mentorship from faculty taught me what it is to be a researcher; and leadership opportunities through the department helped me gain experience motivating and inspiring people. I’m sure I rely on each of those daily.
Being a Virginia Tech alumnus means...
To me, it means to seek out opportunities to help others. That could be through creating technology that helps society in some way, or mentorship that guides others to accomplish their goals. That’s what stands out the most about my time at Virginia Tech. Oh, and tuning in to catch a football or basketball game from time to time!
My fondest memory of my time in the department is...
I always appreciated the various potluck dinners hosted by faculty. It was a great way to build a sense of community among faculty and students.
Chairing the IEEE VIS conference meant … to me.
To me it presented an opportunity to improve aspects of our scientific community. Specifically, we wanted to create a more diverse and inclusive culture, and were able to create scholarships and other programs at the conference to kickstart that process.
My favorite part about being the professor instead of the student is…
Watching students present their work at conferences. It’s great to see them receive recognition for their work!