CSC News

November 18, 2020

Virtual 2020 Diploma Ceremony Set for December 3rd

Please join us as we recognize ALL of our 2020 graduates during the NC State University Computer Science Department’s Virtual 2020 Diploma Ceremony on Thursday, December 3rd at 1:00 p.m.  This event will celebrate graduates from spring, summer and fall, 2020.


The Department had hoped to be in a position this fall to invite all graduates, their friends and family, and our faculty and staff to campus to officially celebrate this milestone in person.  Unfortunately, that is not going to be possible since COVID-19 is still active and surging worldwide.  We have partnered with StageClip, a provider of virtual graduations and personalized video clips, so that all graduates will be honored as individuals, and they will be part of a special communal experience on-line as we celebrate and recognize their unique place in the history of the CSC Department.


All of our 2020 graduates should have received an email from StageClip.  The email included instructions and timelines on how graduates can provide a quote, digital image and/or short video to be included in the ceremony.  When completed, graduates will be sent a link to their individual graduation clip that they can share via social media!  A great example of how each individual clip might look can be found here.


The direct link to the ceremony is, which will be active approximately two days in advance of the actual event. Please share this with your family and friends. If you cannot join us live for the event, it will be available on demand to view at your pleasure later.


Our 2020 Diploma Ceremony special guest speaker will be Dr. Nachi Nagappan, a Partner Researcher at Microsoft Research, and a two-time graduate of the NC State Computer Science Department (MSCN 2002, PhD 2005), where he was advised by Dr. Laurie Williams. 


Nagappan is a Partner Researcher at Microsoft Research where he works in the Software Analysis and Intelligence (SAINT) team. He also holds an adjunct faculty appointment at IIIT New Delhi. His research has been in the field of Data Analytics and Machine Learning for Software Engineering focusing on Analytics for Empirical Software Engineering, Software Reliability, Software Metrics, and Developer Productivity.


His work has had a foundational impact on software engineering practice by investigating many important beliefs about software engineering that used to have little to no empirical evidence. His work on investigating the efficiency of assertion usage in large scale software development led to the use of assertions in the Mars Rover by NASA. His work was the first to quantify the existence of Conway’s law in four decades. He was also the first to quantify the cost benefit tradeoff of doing test-driven development. He empirically showed that, contrary to popular belief, distributed development did not produce poor quality code.

His research results have impacted the broader software engineering industry as well as several product divisions within Microsoft about building and shipping software. His work is often cited and discussed in developer forums and has influenced the developer community towards building better quality software. His work has also shipped as features to millions of users via Windows, Visual Studio, Mobile devices, Forza, Halo etc. His proudest achievement is the fact that all his research work has been done jointly with several collaborators across the globe.


In recognition of his many professional accomplishments, Nagappan was inducted into the NC State Computer Science Alumni Hall of Fame in November 2020.


Congratulations to all our 2020 graduates!



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