ECE Welcomes New Faculty Members for Fall 2023

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Clockwise from Top Left: Dr. Yonghwi Kwon, Dr. Ang Li, Dr. Xin Zan and Dr. Cunxi Yu

Dr. Yonghwi Kwon is joining the ECE Faculty for the 2023 Fall Semester.  Prior to this position, he was an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of Virginia. He will have a joint appointment with the Maryland Cybersecurity Center (MC2) and the UMD College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences (CMNS) - Institute for Advanced Computer Studies.

Kwon is moving from the University of Virginia, where he spent 5 years right after receiving his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Purdue University in 2018. His research aims to secure software systems ranging from traditional software systems to cyber-physical systems. In particular, his team developed tools that (1) discover vulnerabilities and stealthy malicious code in real-world systems such as drones and autonomous cars, (2) reconstruct cyberattack evidence from log data, and (3) protect real-world systems against unknown attacks. His team discovered a number of vulnerabilities and zero-day malware binaries in the wild. More details can be found on his research group website:

He has received a number of recognitions, including an NSF CAREER Award in 2022, an NSF CRII Award in 2018, two ACM Distinguished Paper Awards in 2019 and 2013, Best Paper Awards in Automated Software Engineering (ASE) in 2013, the Purdue University Maurice H. Halstead Memorial Award in 2017. In 2019 and 2020, he led UVA’s National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition Team, which won the national championship.

Dr. Ang Li has joined the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering as an Assistant Professor.  He joins the University of Maryland from Qualcomm AI Research, where he has been employed as a research associate since receiving his Ph.D. from Duke University in 2022.

Li has also earned a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Arkansas.  He has an MS in  Management of Innovation and Venture Capital from Peking University, and a BS in Computer Science from Henan University.

His research interests include Federated Learning, Machine Learning for Mobile, IoT, Edge Computing Systems, and Data-Driven Privacy-Enhancing Techniques.  His dissertation was entitled “Enable Intelligence on Billion Devices with Deep Learning”, which featured research focused on large-scale networked and trustworthy edge intelligent systems and how their development addresses practical challenges in a collaborative, scalable, secure and ubiquitous manner.  A number of advancements in edge computing and other areas have been directly linked to his studies and have been applied to commercial products.

Li has been recognized with a variety of awards, including the Association for Computer Machinery’s Knowledge, Discovery and Data Mining Group Best Student Paper Award in 2020, and the 2022-2023 Duke ECE Department Outstanding Dissertation Award.

University of Utah Assistant Professor Cunxi Yu will be joining the ECE faculty for the Fall 2023 semester. His research interests focus on novel algorithm, system, and hardware designs for computing and security, with special focuses on formal methods, design automation, and machine learning.

Prior to his position with the University of Utah, Yu held postdoc positions at Cornell University and the Integrated Systems Laboratory (LSI) at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland and Cornell University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2017.  He holds a BS from Zhejiang University City College. He was also previously employed as a research intern with the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center.

Yu is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, including a Best Paper Award at the IEEE/ACM Design Automation Conference (DAC) 2023, Best Paper Nomination at the IEEEAsia and South Pacific Design Automation Conference (ASP-DAC) and the IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design Conference 2018. He also won First Place of Hack@DAC at the Design Automation Conference in 2017, a NSF Career Award in 2021, and the American Physical Society Poster Award Honorable Mention in 2022.  He is a member of IEEE and the Association for Computer Machinery (ACM).

Dr. Xin Zan is joining the department as an Assistant Professor.  He is most recently a Postdoctoral Associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Zan received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Michigan in 2022.  His dissertation was titled “Scalable Architectures for High Frequency and Very High Frequency Wireless Power Transfer”.  He also received his B.E. degree in Electrical Engineering and Automation from Tsinghua University in Beijing in 2016.

His research interests include 3-300 MHz power conversion and transmission and pulse power electronics.  He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the IEEE Industry Applications Society Renewable and Sustainable Energy Conversion Systems (IAS RES) Conference First Prize Paper Award in 2022, the IEEE Power Electronics Society Energy Conversion Congress and Expo (PELS ECCE) Best Student Project Demonstration on Emerging Technology Second Place Award in 2018, the IEEE PELS ECCE Best Paper on Emerging Technology Award Oral Presentation in 2019, the Richard F. and Eleanor A. Towner Prize for Distinguished Academic Achievement from the University of Michigan in 2019, the University of Michigan Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship in 2021, and Rackham Graduate Student Research Grant in 2021.

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering welcomes Dr. Yonghwi Kwon, Dr. Ang Li, Dr. Cunxi Yu and Dr. Xin Zan.

Published August 22, 2023