Image of Patti

Assistant Profesor
University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras
Department of Computer Science
San Juan, PR 00936-8377
Phone: 787-764-0000 ext. 5264
Email: patricia DOT ordonez AT upr PERIOD edu

Former National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow
  I am an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science faculty at the University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras and thereby fulfilling three lifelong dreams - living in a Spanish speaking country, becoming a professor (Assistant Professor, actually, but close enough), and having the opportunity to make a greater difference in the world. My research interests are in applying machine learning, data mining, and visualization to multivariate time series analysis, specifically to large repositories of clinical data. There are so many techniques that have been applied to financial and marketing data that can make a significant impact to improve the way medicine is practiced today. Thru collaboration between computational scientists, medical professionals, and others, tools can be developed to create clinical decision support systems so that medical providers make better diagnosis and treatment plans by learning from the experience of previous providers who have had similar patients. I founded the Symposium of Health Informatics for Latin America and the Caribbean as a major step in addressing that objective through international collaboration. I am also passionate about diversifying the field of computer science and thereby am active in mentoring and developing mentoring communities at the high school level, college and graduate school level, and in creating assistive technologies for programming and communication.

I received a PhD from the department of Computer Science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. I defended my dissertation on March 29, 2012 and my doctoral degree was conferred on May 18, 2012. I was a non-traditional student, meaning I took a huge leap of faith while experiencing a close to mid-life crisis. Ages ago as an undergraduate, I was scared off by electrical engineering. After years of teaching high school math and Spanish and even more years of technical training, I decided to go back to school full-time to pursue a graduate degree and explore my mind's fullest potential. I applied for the PhD program realizing that without external funding I would not be able to accomplish this task. UMBC took a chance on me and accepted me with full funding in Fall of 2005 even though I did not have a degree in Computer Science. Thank you, CSEE department at UMBC! After two years, I was blessed and pleasantly surprised to win a fellowship from the National Science Foundation while I struggled to keep up with all the twenty somethings in graduate school. Thank you, NSF! It's hard to believe I am now an Assistant Professor. But, this road was not traveled alone. I have to give credit to UMBC's PROMISE program and to all the support I received from my family, friends, peers, mentors, and advisors. Credit also goes to the CRA-W, the CDC, Google, and the Anita Borg Institute for the wonderful programs they have to keep the underrepresented motivated. Thank you to the National Science Foundation, the CSEE department, the eBiquity laboratory, Verizon, Xerox, and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund for helping to fund my graduate school experience.

Other interests include traveling (see Education), dancing, and biking.