Celebrating four 2024 CS undergraduates: Rohan Kale, Nicte Aguillon Jimenez, Iliyas Alabdulaal, and Sri Laasya Adusumilli

A lot goes into a bachelor’s degree in Computer Sciences. For these students, even more came out of it.

With each graduating class, we’re reminded that our students hold themselves to impeccable standards. Between academic achievements, research projects, scholarships, awards, and other extracurricular activities, Computer Sciences (CS) graduates always leave campus ready for whatever’s next. 

Below, we’re celebrating some of this year’s incredible students. Congratulations to the class of 2024! 

Rohan Kale

Hometown: Sunnyvale, California
Degree(s): BS Computer Sciences, BS Data Science, and a certificate in Mathematics

Math-heavy courses aren’t always an easy sell, but for 2024 graduate Rohan Kale, they were essential to a well-rounded education. In addition to dual majors in Computer Sciences and Data Science, he’s graduating with a certificate in math— coursework from the latter enhanced his grasp on the former, he explains. 

“My math classes have helped tremendously with understanding some of the algorithms I’ve implemented in other classes, such as CS 540 (Intro to Artificial Intelligence),” says Rohan. “Data Science has given me a more wholistic view of the subject along with a better appreciation for the statistical (and often business-focused) side of computer science.”  

Earlier this year, that interest in the business applications of computer science drew Rohan to a Head of Professional Development position within Code for Good, a recently launched CS student organization. Through pro bono coding projects benefitting Madison businesses and community members, Code for Good student members work and learn together. 

On the academic side, CS 564 (Database Management Systems) stands out. According to Rohan, that’s in large part due to Professor AnHai Doan. “Not only was he an amazing teacher who taught me a lot, but his humor during class motivated me to show up every day and put the work in,” says Rohan. 

 After graduating, Rohan is “traveling for a bit,” starting with the summer Olympics in Paris—and then on to who knows what. In August, he’ll start at Capital One, where he completed two very successful internships during his undergraduate studies. 

Nicte Aguillon Jimenez

Hometown: Monterrey, Mexico
Degree(s): BS Computer Sciences and a certificate in Gender and Women’s Studies

Originally from Monterrey, Mexico, Nicte Aguillon Jimenez came to UW–Madison with a desire to leave the world better than she found it. Throughout her time at UW, a rigorous skills-based CS education—complemented by a certificate in Gender and Women’s Studies—helped her do just that.  

“The certificate broadened my views on the importance of diversity, inclusivity, and equity in all areas of life,” she says. “It led me to apply a multicultural lens to all the computer science subjects I studied, as well as their applications.” 

This human-centered approach also earned Nicte several distinctions, including an OZY Genius Award and UW–Madison’s King-Morgridge Scholarship, a program for international scholars “committed to applying their talents toward poverty alleviation.”  

“The OZY Genius Award recognized my innovative ideas and their potential for creating positive change in the world, granting me funding and valuable mentoring support,” says Nicte. “As a King-Morgridge Scholar, I received a full-tuition scholarship to complete my undergraduate studies, enabling me to further my education and contribute meaningfully to community welfare.”  

In CS 565 (Intro to Data Visualizations), Nicte discovered a burgeoning interest in human-computer interaction. “This course sparked my interest in accessibility in technology as well as the cognitive process involved in data visualization,” explains Nicte. “Professor Yea-Seul Kim is amazingly passionate and knowledgeable in the subject. She inspired me to think of accessibility when I do any type of project.” 

Thanks to the skills she learned in CS 565, Nicte also added solutions architecture roles with AI4AFRIKA and IssakaAI to her resume prior to graduating. In addition to “spearheading dynamic data visualization projects, leading a team in developing health-related datasets, and aiding data collection,” these positions afforded her the opportunity to “explore the design of interfaces, API integration, and data management practices.”  

Iliyas Alabdulaal

Hometowns: Khobar, Saudi Arabia and Yokohama, Japan
Degree(s): BS Computer Sciences and a certificate in Data Science

For Iliyas Alabdulaal, semesters were nothing short of busy. Prior to arriving on campus, he was invited to participate in the KAUST Gifted Student Program, a Saudi scholarship that singles out promising high school seniors interested in pursuing careers in STEM fields.  

Once in Madison, Iliyas made Dean’s List each semester and landed two internships with Dow Chemical and Aramco Americas. He also supported Professor Karu Sankaralingam’s work in the Vertical Research Group: “I worked on some simple neural networks for use in low-level CPU architecture (RISC-V) and analyzing the behavior of C code with odd memory accesses,” says Iliyas. 

And that doesn’t even include classes or coursework. 

“The most memorable course for me was definitely CS 537 (Intro to Operating Systems),” says Iliyas. Instructed by Professor Remzi Arpaci-Dusseau—“easily one of the top professors I’ve had during undergrad”this is the course that inspired Iliyas to love systems. It’s also the course he spent the most time on. 

“Long nights were spent in the CS labs with friends, but they were always rewarding,” he says. The final project for the course, which required him to create a distributed network file system library and was the “hardest in the semester,” galvanized an interest in the systems field of computer science. “It’s what made me realize that building systems was something I definitely want to pursue after graduating.”   

As part of the KAUST Gifted Student Program, Iliyas will be pursuing a MS in Computer Science at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Thuwal, Saudi Arabia. 

Sri Laasya Adusumilli

Hometown: Hyderabad, India
Degree(s): BS Computer Sciences

Sri Laasya Adusumilli has “always liked numbers,” and that’s more or less what brought her from Hyderabad to Madison. Once on campus, it’s also what led her to one of her favorite courses: CS 435 (Intro to Cryptography). Learning from Professor Rishab Goyal introduced Sri Laasya to a probabilistic use case for numbers and clarified concepts like encryption, key aggregates, randomness, and other cryptographic applications. 

As a freshman, I was intrigued by the way different systems smoothly transferred information without compromising on data, security, or compliances,” she says. “This class changed everything. I realized how thin the line was between a secure system and one that’s not. 

Projects outside the classroom also made an impression. During an internship with Epic Systems, Sri Laasya was charged with enhancing the existing MyChart portal, “a secure online service that allows you to view portions of your UW Health medical record,” through an artificial intelligence (AI) plug-in. “The final product was a functioning MyChart portal that scrapes, fetches, and simplifies data chunks such as visit notes and test results,” says Sri Laasya. “I enjoyed it because it challenged me to think strategically.” 

While she came to UW–Madison first and foremost for a competitive CS degree, Sri Laasya also made sure to pursue work outside the scope of her studies. “Throughout my journey, I realized that all skills are cross-disciplinary,” she explains. “Working for the Daily Cardinal and National Student Athletics helped me grow professionally by teaching me effective communication, critical thinking, and user-centric management.” Along with her CS studies, Sri Laasya credits both with guiding her to “the right career and academic paths.” 

After commencement on Saturday, Sri Laasya will join Deloitte full-time as a solutions engineering analyst. That’s just step one, however. “I plan on pursuing business analytics in a post-secondary degree program,” she says.