Before coming to NSF, Jan was a faculty member in the Computer Science departments at Purdue University, the University of Massachusetts, and the University of Oregon. Her research centered on programming environments for computational science.
At NSF, Dr. Cuny founded the BPC program. It aims to significantly increase the number of students getting postsecondary degrees in computing, with an initial emphasis on those groups – women, minorities, and persons with disabilities – who have traditionally been underrepresented in computing. BPC supports efforts from middle school through graduate school and the early faculty ranks. It currently has a portfolio of over $50 million in active awards. More importantly, it has built a national community of several hundred researchers and practitioners who actively collaborate on interventions that address underrepresentation.
Dr. Cuny has been involved in efforts to increase the participation of women in computing research for many years. She was a long time member of the Computing Research Association’s Committee on the Status of Women (CRA-W), serving among other activities as a CRA-W co-chair, a mentor in their Distributed Mentoring Program, and a lead on their Academic Career Mentoring Workshop, Grad Cohort, and Cohort for Associated Professors projects. Jan was also a member of the Advisory Board for Anita Borg Institute for Woman and Technology, the Leadership team of the National Center for Women in Technology, the Executive Committee of the Coalition to Diversify Computing, and the Board of Directors of the Computing Research Association. She was Program Chair of the 2004 Grace Hopper Conference and the General Chair of the 2006 conference. For her efforts with underserved populations, she is a recipient of one of the 2006 ACM President’s Awards and the 2007 CRA A. Nico Habermann Award.
To make sure that she is speaking from some experience, Jan teaches technology to 5th and 6th graders at an afterschool program Washington, D.C. She is also a mother and a grandmother, and a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children in the foster care system.