Director

Nitin Agarwal
Jerry L. Maulden-Entergy Endowed Chair & Distinguished Professor

Dr. Nitin Agarwal is the Jerry L. Maulden-Entergy Endowed Chair and Distinguished Professor of Information Science at UA Little Rock and Director of the Collaboratorium for Social Media and Online Behavioral Studies (COSMOS). He researches cyber information campaigns, social computing, deviant behavior modeling, group dynamics, social-cyber forensics, data mining, and privacy.

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Postdoctoral Fellows

Muhammad Nihal Hussain
Postdoctorate Research Fellow

Nihal joined UA Little Rock in 2014 to pursue his master’s degree in information quality where he was introduced to COSMOS and the Blogtrackers tool. Since then, Nihal has become one of our core researchers heading this project. He graduated with his doctoral degree in December 2019.

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Esther Mead
POSTDOCTORATE RESEARCH FELLOW

Esther Ledelle Mead is a postdoctoral fellow at COSMOS. Esther joined the COSMOS team in the Fall of 2016 and graduated with her doctoral degree in December 2020. Her research interests revolve around Information Quality and Computing in Social Science.

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Doctoral Students

Mustafa Alassad
Ph.D. Candidate

After graduating with his master's degree in systems engineering from UA Little Rock, Mustafa chose to continue in his education in this field and enrolled in the Ph.D. program. He was introduced to COSMOS in the Spring of 2018. His background includes operational research and the protection of infrastructure networks from malicious attacks. 

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Tuja Khaund
Ph.D. Candidate

Tuja graduated from UA Little Rock with her master’s degree and is currently pursuing Ph.D. in Computer & Information Sciences at UALR. She specializes in social bots' behaviors, evolution, and detection.

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Thomas Marcoux
Ph.D. Candidate

Thomas graduated from UA Little Rock with an MS degree and is now pursuing his Ph.D. in Information Science. His interests include machine learning and information visualization.

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Billy Spann
Ph.D. Candidate

Billy has earned his Masters in Computer and Information Science and is now pursue his PhD. His background from the telecom industry is in research, design and optimization of wireless communication networks.

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Zachary Stine
Ph.D. Candidate

After several years of part-time, undergraduate coursework in computer science, he joined Dr. Agarwal's lab where he is now a graduate research assistant, researching the use of computational methods to study social phenomena.

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Karen Watts DiCicco
Ph.D. Candidate

Karen is pursuing her doctoral's degree in Information Science. She graduated in December 2018 with her bachelor’s degree and Graduate Certificate in Data Science.  After graduating with her master’s degree in Information Science in December 2019, Karen is continues being part COSMOS while earning her Ph.D. in computer and information science with a specialty in developing strategies to fight disinformation campaigns online using blockchain technology.  She is also the Digital & IT Innovation Manager at University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

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Ruchi Agarwal
Ph.D. Student

Ruchi is a Ph.D. student in the Information Science track of the Computer & Information Science program at UA Little Rock. She completed her master's degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology and her MBA from SNDT Women's University in India. With over nine years of work experience, she is currently leading data engineering at HBO for its marketing team. She works closely with data science teams for deriving predictive models for customer segmentation and targeting. She has a deep interest in the use of data science to predict customer behavior and wants to dive deep into behavioral analysis with applications in technology and society.

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Abiola Akinnubi
Ph.D. Student

Abiola is pursuing a Ph.D. in Computer and Information Sciences at UA Little Rock. He possesses significant experience as a software engineer across organizations in the financial, financial technology, and energy industries. In his most recent experience, Abiola was an iOS engineer for multiple financial institutions. He holds a bachelor's degree in Applied Geology and a master's degree in Exploration Geophysics from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria (FUTA). Abiola is an avid lifelong learner.

Hayder Al-Rubaye
Ph.D. Student

Hayder is pursuing his doctoral degree at UA Little Rock. He graduated from Al Nahrain University in Bagdad, Iraq, with a bachelor's degree and master's degree in computer science. His extensive studies focused on web technologies.

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Brian Blake
Ph.D. Student

Brian Blake has almost twenty years of industry experience with Acxiom Corporation. He is currently a senior research analyst with previous roles as a research analyst, database delivery analyst, data developer, and data quality specialist.

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Recep Erol
Ph.D. Student

Recep Erol is a PhD student at the UA Little Rock majoring in Computers and Information Science. His research is focused on YouTube video categorization for identification of bot activities and automated artificial content generation, video text data opinion mining, video transcription, and creating a smart tool using these techniques. 

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Rick Galeano
Ph.D. Student

Rick is a PhD student at the UA Little Rock pursuing a degree in Computers and Information Science. His interests revolve around strategic communications, social network analysis and social cyber forensics.

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Ashekul Huq
Ph.D. Student

Ashekul is a doctoral student in Information Quality.

Katrin Kania Galeano
Ph.D. Student

Katrin Galeano is a PhD student at the UA Little Rock. She majors in Computers and Information Science. Her background is in strategic communications for non-profit and government organizations.

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Maryam Maleki
Ph.D. Student

Maryam joined UA Little Rock in the Fall of 2018 to pursue a doctoral degree in systems engineering. She holds a bachelor’s degree in electronic engineering and a master’s degree in systems and industrial engineering from Tehran, Iran. She has ten years job experience in quality control/assurance in the car industry. Maryam joined COSMOS in the Fall of 2019. Her research is focused on misinformation, mathematical modeling, machine learning, and social media analysis.

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Graduate Students

Adeola Adesoba
Graduate Student

Adeola is a second year graduate student in the Information Quality program at UA Little Rock and completed her bachelor's degree in statistics at the University of Ilorin in Nigeria. She has previous experience in the financial services industry as a risk analyst and she is passionate about utilizing technology for social good. 

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Oluwaseyi David Adeliyi
Graduate Student

Seyi is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Information Science at UA Little Rock. He previously worked as a product manager in the financial technology sector and has co-founded a startup in Nigeria. With a bachelor’s degree in computer science, he possesses a technical background in software development, networking and computer security with a new found interest in data science. Seyi loves to learn about exponential technologies and space exploration.

Oluwaseun Leonard Johnson

Seun is currently pursuing a master's degree in Information Science at UALR.  He received his bachelor’s degree in Industrial Physics and Applied Geophysics from Covenant University in Nigeria. 

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Joseph Kready
Data Engineer

Joseph has earned his bachelor's degree in Computer Science in December 2020 and is currently pursuing a master's degree in the same field. Outside of COSMOS and school, Joseph runs the Artificial Intelligence in Arkansas group, which focuses on building the AI community in Arkansas. 

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Sodiq Oyedotun
Graduate Student
Uche Umoga

Uche joined UA Little Rock in 2019 to pursue a master's degree in Computer Science.  His previous experience as a Senior Software Development Engineer and Application Development Manager combined with his bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Landmark University in Nigeria will be beneficial for his work on Blogtrackers.  

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Undergraduate Students

Michael DiCicco
Research Assistant

Michael is a full time student at UA Little Rock majoring in Information Science, a full time Service Technician at Arkansas Legal Technologies, and an hourly Research Assistant at COSMOS. 

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Alumni

Adewale Obadimu
Site Reliability Engineer at LinkedIn

Wale graduated with his doctoral degree in computer science at UA Little Rock in the Fall of 2020. During his studies, he focused on machine learning and deep learning techniques.  He did not only play a crucial role in the development of various COSMOS social media analytics tools, but was also sharing his knowledge with other students in his team and classroom.  

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Shishila Awung Shimray

Shishi joined COSMOS in the Fall of 2018 and became a developer for YouTubeTracker while pursuing her master's degree in computer science.  Prior to enrolling in graduate school, she worked as a software engineer for Netsmart Technologies Inc. She is no stranger to UA Little Rock.  In 2015, Shishi graduated with her bachelor's degree in Electronics and Computer Engineering from UA Little Rock.  In the Fall of 2020, Shishi earned her master's degree.

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Abdullah Al Faysal
Software Engineer II at Walmart

Abdullah Al Faysal graduated with a master's degree in Information Science UA Little Rock in May of 2020. Coding is his passion but he also loves exploring different cuisines when he is not writing codes.

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Adekunle Adigun
Software Engineer at Cisco

Adekunle graduated with his master's degree in Business Information System at the UA Little Rock - College of Business. He completed his undergraduate studies in Computer Science and Engineering from Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria. He has more than eight years extensive experience in web application and development, mobile application and developments, web technologies, UX/UI, and programming

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Oluwaseun Walter
Cloud Engineer at Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Walter worked as a researcher at COSMOS. He graduated with his master's degree in Business Information Systems at UA Little Rock in May of 2019.

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Kiran Kumar Bandeli
Data Scientist at Walmart International

In December 2019, Kiran graduated with his doctoral degree in the Information Science program at UA Little Rock.

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Anol Kanti Roy

Anol earned his Masters in Information Science UA Little Rock. When he is not writing codes, he is either hiking, trekking or simply looking out for the next big adventure.

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Richard Young

Richard earned his master's degree in information science applying his skills and interests toward his graduate research assistantship for the team at COSMOS. His interests include data visualization, web development, UI/UX design, and mobile-first design. 

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Serpil Tokdemir Yuce
Program Manager

Dr. Serpil Tokdemir Yuce is a program manager at the office of Medicaid Inspector General and has a joint affiliation with the COSMOS as a Research Associate. She is specializing in extracting and analyzing raw data from Fraud and Abuse Detection systems.

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Rita Chowdhury
2018

Rita is an MBA student at the UA Little Rock - College of Business.  In 2018, Rita was an invaluable team member who performed public relations and research work for COSMOS. She is currently an audit tax intern at Frost, PLLC, in Little Rock.  

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Kim Tran
Ph.D. - Fall 2018

Kim Tran graduated with her Ph.D. in December 2018.  Her research focuses on the validity of patient data found on social networks. 

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Samer Al-khateeb
Ph.D. - Spring 2018

Samer Al-khateeb is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science & Informatics at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. He graduated with his Ph.D. in the Spring of 2018 and continued his work at COSMOS as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. His research interests include deviant behavioral modeling, deviant cyber flash mobs, cyber propaganda campaigns, social cyber forensics, and social bots behaviors, evolution, and detection.

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Andrew Pyle
Master of Science - Spring 2018

Andrew graduated with his Master of Science degree in May 2018. He completed a capstone project involving language synthesis for the Twitter social media platform. As a COSMOS research team member, he helped create a web platform to host a network-processing algorithm called Focal Structures Analysis developed by a former UA Little Rock PhD student.

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Abu Fahad Siddiqui
Master of Science - Fall 2017
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Ghouri Mohammad Saaduddin
Master of Science - Fall 2017
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Mukti Barole Shobha Sangappa
Master of Science - Fall 2017
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Najma Shaik
Master of Science - Fall 2017
Mohammad Shiblee Nooman
Master of Science - Summer 2017
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Therese Williams
Ph.D. - Spring 2017
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Amit Saha
Ph.D. - Spring 2016
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Faysal Ahmed
Ph.D. - Spring 2015
Mainuddin Shaik
Master of Science - Spring 2016
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Abdul Fattah Mohammad
Master of Science - Spring 2016
Nermin Hanna
Master of Science - Spring 2015
Fatih Śen
Ph.D. - Spring 2014
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Ismail Guvenc Yuce
Ph.D. - Fall 2012
Masood Mir
Ph.D. - Spring 2012

Masood Mir graduated with his Ph.D. in Applied Computing - Engineering Sciences in the Spring of 2012.  He is a former faculty member of Rowan University and now a DAS Engineer at Verizon Wireless.

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