Howard University has announced “Advocacy” as its theme for the 2020 Howard Homecoming festivities, scheduled October 10-18. This year, homecoming will be virtual.

“Advocacy appropriately captures the energy of this moment in our society and the need to use this time wisely to continue to move Howard Forward, ensuring that this great university will continue producing the scholars and leaders that our society desperately needs,” said President Wayne A. I. Frederick in a statement.

One of those scholars is Devin C. Martin, a budding data science researcher and software engineer in the Class of 2020, who is featured in ‘We Are Howard’ on the front page.

According to Howard University, Martin, an electrical engineering and computer science student, played a big role in developing a prototype for ConnexionAI, an application that can convert video input of American Sign Language to spoken languages.

Martin also helped to develop an award-winning prototype for Handoff, a ride-sharing and carpool application that helps connect people in need of transportation with volunteer drivers.

During the quarantine,  he developed a program to stop the spread of misinformation on social media for MIT’s COVID-19 Datathon Challenge.

“Well, during my time in quarantine I wanted to use my skills in engineering to tackle the toughest healthcare and socioeconomic issues related to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis,” Martin posted on LinkedIn.  “As a result, I decided to apply and was accepted to MIT’s COVID-19 Datathon Challenge, where my team and I were able to develop a program/study to stop the spread of misinformation on COVID19. By examining social media data with posts associated with preprint bioRxiv studies, scientific hashtags, and ultimately examining social media datasets in the scientific context we were able to filter out false information.”

The MIT COVID-19 Datathon was a week-long virtual event where teams of data scientists, clinicians, public health professionals, and other experts came together to develop insights leveraging existing datasets to influence policy and decision making in the public and private sector.

Martin has interned in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the National Security Agency Data Science Research Internship, and the Google Computer Science Summer Institute.

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