Prof. Jie Wang first became interested in computer science in 1978, a few months before beginning college at Zhongshan University in his native China. He was only 16.
“At that time in China, working with computers meant that you had to put on special white outfits like medical doctors in an air-conditioned room and I thought that it was neat,” he recalls. “The university I attended was one of the best in the country and actually owned one computer for students to use!”
After obtaining a bachelor of science degree in computational mathematics in 1982 and a master of engineering degree in computer science in 1985, both from Zhongshan University, he went on to study computational complexity theory at Boston University. There, in 1991, he received a Ph.D. in computer science.
The department chair says, “I liked UMass Lowell’s computer science department and the campus’s proximity to Boston. I liked teaching and I enjoyed the freedom of doing research of my choice in a university environment. So I obtained a tenure-track faculty position after I graduated. I joined UMass Lowell in the fall of 2001 as a full professor.”
To date, Wang has published more than 150 peer-reviewed research papers, as well as five books. He has also been invited to give talks in the U.S., Canada, Germany and China. Funding for his research, which has been supported by the National Science Foundation, IBM and Intel, exceeds $3 million. In 2002, he was given a Teaching Excellence Award by UMass Lowell.
In 2003, his “interest in helping our nation protect its cyber infrastructure” led to the founding of the Center for Network and Information Security. He has served as its director since. He also began the China academic partnership program in 2009, and has “spent a substantial amount of time and energy to help it grow.”
Of his experience at UMass Lowell, he says, “This is an interesting and exciting time at the University and I consider myself lucky to be part of it.”