Kelsey DiPietro

Institution/Organization: University of Notre Dame. 

Department: Applied Computational Mathematics and Statistics.

Academic Status: Graduate Student.

What conference theme areas are you interested in:

Computational science and machine learning;
Multiscale, multiphysics, and multilevel methods;
High performance software: packages and design;
High-order methods, novel discretizations, and scalable solvers;
Data science, analytics, and visualization;
Applications in science, engineering, and industry;
Scientific simulation and uncertainty;
Numerical optimization: methods and applications;
Emerging trends in CS&E education and training.


My PhD work has focused on developing adaptive numerical methods for high order partial differential equations. The original motivating problem came from engineering, where we successfully modeled touchdown events and post-touchdown configurations for a rectangle MEMS capacitor. The effectiveness of the method motivated the remainder of my thesis work, which extends the adaptive meshing methods to curved domains and other applications such as biological reaction diffusion systems. 

While my PhD has focused mostly on adaptive numerical methods, I am interested in a variety of computational research problems. I am fascinated by the ability of mathematics to describe and effectively model such a wide range of physical phenomenon. I have primarily focused on engineering applications, but I would like to expand to other applications, such as climate modeling and biomedical engineering. In particular, I would like to integrate the work I have done on numerical methods for PDEs during my PhD with the more recent knowledge on machine learning and time series analysis, which I gained during an internship at IBM Research, to create comprehensive and accurate models for physical systems.

Non-Work Related Activities/Interests:

Outside of my academic focus, I have a variety of interests. I enjoy traveling to new countries and experiencing new cultures. I grew up in a large family with a limited travel budget, so before graduate I had never left the country and had only been on an airplane a handful of times. During my first year of graduate school, I had the opportunity to join 12 other graduate students on an immersion trip to Haiti. The experience entirely changed my viewpoint on travel, I went from just wanting to see a place to seeing it as a chance to talk to the locals, try new foods, listen to the music, and immerse myself in a new culture. Since that trip, I have been fortunate enough to internationally travel quite a bit, both for business and for pleasure. My favorite place I have been to so far is Melbourne, Australia. Though living in Dublin, Ireland for eleven weeks for an internship is definitely a very close second in terms of travel experiences. 

Beyond travel, I enjoy physical fitness, ranging from traditional strength training to hiking and biking. After a long day of work, I typically will watercolor paint as a way to distress and bring out my creative side. 

I also like to stay involved in the local community through various volunteer activities. I have been an aid station volunteer at the Chicago marathon for several years. I tutored and mentored junior high girls at an achievement center during my undergraduate studies. And last year I was a coach for Girls on Run, a program that empowers 3rd – 5th grade girls though running exercises. These activities have not only given me a strong connection to my community but they have also shown me the huge impact that strong modeling can have on fostering confidence in young women.