Distinguished Lecturer Series

2023 – 2024 Speakers

 

Dustin Gaspard

DLS Speaker

Topic:  How has the industry changed since I graduated, and what are the emerging
trends I’m seeing in the industry for the next twenty years?

Thursday, April 18, 2024 – 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Email industryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Dustin Gaspard graduated from Southeastern’s Computer Science program in 2005. He
began his programming career in 1998 during high school, working with Lloyds of London.
Since then, he has contributed to various projects, including automating Post 9/11
GI Benefits and collaborating on onlinebanking.capitalone.com. Currently, Gaspard
is involved in modernizing the HR platform for the Federal government, a project impacting
over 2,000,000 employees.

 

Tika Pahadi

DLS Speaker

Topic: Career Paths in Computer Science: Exploring Research, Industry, and Entrepreneurship
Thursday, March 21, 2024 – 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Email industryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Tika Pahadi is a Southeastern alum and has worked as a Software Engineer for Amazon
for 5 years, at the Global Payments Authentication division and Amazon Web Services
(S3). Before Amazon, he worked with couple of companies in Baton Rouge area, such
as Fusionstak, Omindek, Zoom Audits, etc.

For the last 2 years, he has also run his own research firm “Pahadi Research” on the
side. The company does research on various disciplines such as AI, Human Computer
Interaction (HCI) and UI/UX. It also provides bespoke cloud services and assists companies
in automating and improving their business workflow.  Connect with Tika Pahadi via
LinkedIn
 https://www.linkedin.com/in/ti-ka

 

Abe Baggili

DLS Speaker

Topic: Tales From the BiT Lab:  From Roomba Revelations to Mixed Reality Mysteries
Thursday, February 29th – 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Email industryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Dr. Ibrahim (Abe) Baggili is a first generation Arab American. He is a Professor of
Computer Science and Cybersecurity at Louisiana State University and the founder of
the BiT Lab (Baggili Truth Lab) where he h
olds a joint appointment between the Division of Computer Science & Engineering and the Center for
Computation and Technology. He has won numerous awards including the CT Civil Medal
of Merit, the Medal of Thor from the Military Cyber Professional Association, CT 40
under 40, and is a fellow of the European Alliance for Innovation. Prior to that he
was the director of the Connecticut Institute of Technology and Elder Family Endowed
Chair of Computer Science & Cybersecurity at the Tagliatela College of Engineering
at the University
of New Haven. He received his BSc, MSc and PhD all from Purdue University where he worked
as a researcher in CERIAS. Work with his students has uncovered vulnerabilities that
impact over a billion people worldwide and has been featured in news and TV outlets
in over 20 languages and he has published extensively in the domain of digital forensics.
To learn more about the BiT Lab, you can visit
https://csc.lsu.edu/~baggili

 

Marcel Lalonde

DLS Speaker

Topic: From Then to Now:  A Journey of Success and Failures
Thursday, September 21, 2023 – 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Email industryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Marcel Lalonde is a Vice President of MMR Group, serving as Chief Information Officer
and overseeing the company’s information technology services throughout 30 offices
in North and South America. As the largest open-shop electrical and instrumentation
contractor in the nation, MMR is the industry leader in electrical construction, maintenance,
and technical services, consistently ranking at the top of Engineering News-Record’s
(ENR) annual specialty contractor’s list.  

Marcel has served MMR for over a decade and is responsible for building infrastructure
and application systems that will scale to adapt the company’s continuous growth,
which includes revenues of $967 million and a 5,500 nationwide workforce in 2022.

 

Bryan McCoy

DLSTopic: From Academic Probation to Microsoft

Date/Time: Thursday, October 19, 2023 – 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
EmailindustryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Bryan McCoy, a Computer Science graduate from Southeastern Louisiana University and
Senior Software Engineer at Microsoft, with experience in the .NET Framework and React.
With a proven track record that includes holding multiple Software Architect positions,
Bryan is not only a technical expert but also a dedicated community contributor. He
has volunteered with TEALs, led a .NET User Group, and spoken at various conferences.
Join him for an inspiring talk on achieving career goals through strategic planning
and community involvement.

Talk Summary:
From AP to MSFT: How I made a plan, used the tools around me, and never stopped working
toward my goals.
Getting off to a bad or late start is never a showstopper.  By setting meaningful
goals, developing a plan, using the tools around you, and “figuring it out” you can
get to where you want to go.  Couple that with constantly challenging yourself and
being intentional with your time, and you realize that being successful may be easier
than you realize.  In this talk, I will share my journey to accomplishing my goals
and the tips and tricks I’ve learned along the way. Join me to see how I went from
Academic Probation to Microsoft. 

 

Dustin Hughes

DLS

Topic: AI From LLMs to Agents:  A Journey Through the LangChain Ecosystem
Date/Time:  November 16, 2023 – 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Email industryConnect@southeastern.edu to be added to the RSVP list

The lecture is held in the Envoc Innovation Lab, Room 2026, Computer Science Technology
Building (801 N. Oak Street), Southeastern Louisiana University and via Google Meet.

Summary of the Talk:  Explore the LangChain ecosystem and learn how it simplifies
the process of building complex language models that make decisions and take actions
based on user input. We’ll discuss how LangChain’s interface for LLMs and chains provides
a foundation for building more sophisticated agents to interact with external data
sources, make decisions, and store states between calls. Whether you’re new to language
modeling or an experienced practitioner, this session will provide valuable insights
into the LangChain ecosystem and how it can help you build more powerful language
models and agents.

Dustin Hughes is currently working as Technical Director of Research and Development
at POOLCORP, he has led breakthrough projects like LangBridge and AquaGenius. His
dedication and innovation have streamlined processes, saving time and costs significantly.

Previously, our guest served as the Technical Director of Software Architecture at
POOLCORP, where he revamped the company’s web and mobile platforms and conceived the
first-ever mobile point-of-sale solution. Earlier, he showcased his prowess in software
development as the Senior Software Architect at POOLCORP, creating a B2B sales portal
mobile app that brought considerable annual revenue.

His journey began as a Linux/AIX administrator at POOLCORP, where he made notable
improvements in the company’s computing power. Not confining himself to his professional
sphere, he actively engages with local hackers and teaches machine learning to the
local community, showing a deep commitment to community development.