Data scientist Yuxin Chen honored for excellence in mentoring graduate students

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
by Denise Valenti, Office of Communications

Four Princeton University faculty members, including Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering Yuxin Chen, have been named recipients of the Graduate Mentoring Awards by the McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning and will be honored during the Graduate School’s virtual Hooding ceremony at 4 p.m., Friday, May 29.

Chen, a faculty member since 2017, studies the mathematical foundations of data science, optimization, high-dimensional statistics, statistical learning, information theory, and their applications to medical imaging and computational biology. Students said they appreciated Chen’s thorough explanations of complex materials, as well as his accessibility and constructive feedback on their work. “Even if he is busy, he is always willing to discuss ideas or proof details with me for hours, which is always fruitful,” said an advisee. Chen also serves as an exceptional role model. “Perhaps the most important thing I learned from him is not about the algorithms and proofs, but the philosophy of the academic life,” said a student. “From him, I see what the life of an enthusiastic and self-disciplined scholar would be.” Another advisee said, “Yuxin is the one that helps me maximize my potential as a scholar, which in my opinion is the defining characteristic of an exceptional adviser.”

The other recipients include Ileana Cristea, professor of molecular biology; Brandon Stewart, assistant professor of sociology; and Judith Weisenfeld, the Agate Brown and George L. Collord Professor of Religion and chair of the Department of Religion.

For details on all the recipients, see the full story.