Luddy Faculty Fellows

The Luddy Faculty Fellows program, funded as part of a transformative, $60 million gift from Fred Luddy in 2019, is designed to support excellence in research that is—or promises to be—important, imaginative, or timely.

Luddy Faculty Fellow Spotlights


Computational Poetry Analysis: AI for Literature
Choi’s research focuses on the intersection of technology, humans, and music. This project will develop AI-based NLP systems that achieve a high-level understanding of a poem, such as its emotion and theme. Her project will focus on three questions: 1) Can advanced deep learning-based language processing models, such as BERT, decipher emotions and themes of poems? 2) Can learned model on song lyrics be re-purposed for poem content analysis, given their common characteristics? 3) Do auxiliary data, such as authors’ notes on their poems and crowdsourced word emotion labels, provide additional information to the poem analysis systems?

Preparing Cancer Patient Digital Twins to Forecast Progression and Treatment
Macklin’s work focuses on cancer patient digital twins—predictive models that are tailored to individual patients to predict cancer progression and therapeutic response. This proposal will enhance the scope and expedite progress to prototype, analyze and refine CPDTs for melanoma pulmonary (lung) metastases. This project will develop the methodologies to fuse dynamical cancer models with AI and data assimilation, providing a critical step in personalizing predictive cancer models to assist clinical decision making and improve care.

Reverse Engineering the Origins of Visual Intelligence
Wood creates high-precision methods for studying newborn animals, specifically, the origins of their core cognitive abilities. He then builds autonomous models that can create artificial brains that learn in the same way as newborns. As a cognitive scientist with a background in psychology, neuroscience, and artificial intelligence, Wood’s goal is to reverse engineer the learning mechanisms in newborn brains. In this project, he will use a new experimental system to build task-performing computational models of newborn visual systems.

2020-21 Fellows


Examining Food Experiences during Routine Disruptions
Chung’s work focuses on examining how disruptions in a person’s daily routine influences health behavior and practices with a goal of designing tools that help people stick to healthy eating habits when faced with challenges such as moving, pregnancy, a change in employment status, or illness. Chung’s proposal aims to use healthy eating as an example to examine how disruptions could influence healthy behavior and practices. Understanding how routine disruptions influence eating and food preparation could provide insights into how to design tools that help people stick to their healthy eating goals despite disruptions.

An intelligent biomedical system for non-invasive cancer detection
The goal of Guo’s work is to develop a bioengineering device and intelligent system that can measure individual cell stickiness (cell-cell adhesion) across a large cell population with high-precision, which will address the inability to measure highly heterogeneous clinical samples and provide new means of detection for metastatic diseases. The device employs digitalized acoustics and fluidics to measure individual cell stickiness across a large cell population by rupturing cell-cell physical contact. The proposed device aims to measure individual cell stickiness with high-sensitivity across a wide range of stickiness strength and unprecedented number within a short time.

Want to apply to be a Luddy Faculty Fellow?

Fellows are competitively selected by the dean, the ADR, and a selection committee to receive $20,000 + $5,000 toward summer pay. Fellows may use the Luddy Faculty Fellow title during their award period and are expected to culminate the award with a talk for the Luddy community.

Luddy School tenure track and non-tenure track faculty who have not received the award in the prior five years are eligible to apply. If you would like to be considered for the fellowships, please submit your application to the ADR office by September 1. The application should include your two-page project description (including a timeline), budget, and your curriculum vitae. The award recipients will be announced on or around October 1 each year.

Selection criteria

Fellowships are intended to support excellence in research that is – or promises to be – important, imaginative, and/or timely, by allowing recipients to:

  • enhance the scope of a project,
  • expedite project results,
  • and/or (based on a previous track record of excellence) pivot into a new, different kind of research project.

Projects will be selected with respect for the breadth of areas pursued by the school.