The Graduate School Advance to a Higher Degree

Maria Leonor Pacheco

Maria Leonor Pacheco, from Caracas, Venezuela, is a graduate student in Computer Science. Her research focuses on structured prediction and representation learning for natural language processing and relational domains. 

Why did you choose Purdue?

I had contacted professors in a few school, and received the best feedback from my current advisor at Purdue, Prof. Dan Goldwasser. It seemed like a good fit for me and I decided to go with it. 

What is your favorite fact about Purdue?

It is a very diverse University, with a big international population. It is also a very good school with a lot of resources.

Career goal?

I am currently undecided between pursuing an academic career or looking for a research position in the industry. 

Where do you spend most of your time on campus?

In the lab, of course. However, I do move around a lot, as I find that frequently changing my working environment optimizes my productivity.

What apps, software, or tools can’t you live without?

For work, the Unix terminal and vim (enhanced with millions of plugins) and the CS department GPUs. I am an avid Twitter user as well. 

What’s your workspace setup?

I have three big screens, one at the lab, one at home and one at my partner's apartment. When out of the lab, I just connect to my work computer from my laptop and work remotely.

What are you currently reading, or what is the last thing you read?

Last thing book I bought was Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar. I found myself driving to the beach in Hawaii during my last academic conference and stopped by the only bookstore I could find on the way. 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

That other people's success is not our failure, and that we can be so much happier if we learn to celebrate the achievements of other people as well as our own. I heard this advice in the context of grad school, but I think that it applies to other things as well. 


Number of Graduate Students Enrolled Since 2018: 10


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