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TECH-SAVVY JOBS

UT Brownsville students Hector Guzman and Tony Quiroga in their Digital Image Processing course on
Thursday, April 24, 2014. They will be going to Florida International University for a research internship with
the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in the summer.
UT Brownsville students Hector Guzman and Tony Quiroga in their Digital Image Processing course on Thursday, April 24, 2014. They will be going to Florida International University for a research internship with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in the summer.

UTB computer science students get hands-on experience creating apps and software

Tony Quiroga, 24, a senior computer science major at The University of Texas at Brownsville, never lost the curiosity he had as a child.

“I have always wanted to learn about everything,” he said. “It just came to me randomly to study computer science.”

Quiroga, a graduate of Brownsville’s Pace High School, took during the spring semester Digital Image Processing taught by Dr. Mahmoud K. Quweider, a Professor in the School of Engineering and Computational Sciences in the College of Science, Mathematics and Technology. Students taking the course work hands-on with scenarios to acquire digital or video images to compress, analyze and extract features of interest for later processing and inspection tasks. Digital imaging uses a combination of computer science, mathematics and engineering principles to achieve its goals.

“My favorite project would have to be the image classification one,” said Quiroga. “It was interesting to see how you can develop a program to extract features and classify different objects based on those features.”

A career in digital image processing can be pursued either through computer science or computer information systems degree programs at UTB. A computer science degree typically emphasizes programming in a language such as Java while a computer information systems degree focuses on the use of ready-made software. Some UTB graduates work for local hospitals and local business and marketing entities.

“It’s amazing how digital image processing is in every aspect of our lives,” said Quweider. “We make it easier for everyone to use images whether for fun or for their jobs.”

Mobile application development is a career that students can pursue with digital processing experience. Examples of digital image processing can be found by looking at smartphone and tablet games like Candy Crush Saga, Minecraft, Red Stone and Tetris and popular social applications like Instagram.

People can also pursue careers through processing X-rays, patient and medical records in the health care field, crime science images in forensic science and in commercial printing.

Quiroga, along with Hector Guzman, 24, a first-year UTB graduate student in computer science from Matamoros, Mexico, will study content-based image retrieval during a 10-week summer internship sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at Florida International University in Miami. The internships last from Monday, May 12 to Friday, July 18. The group hopes to bring some of the cutting-edge research back to UTB and involve current and future students. Quweider will accompany the students and also conduct research.

“When I think about this internship, the first thing that comes to mind is having a real life experience about what do I learn in class and being able to make use of all of my knowledge and skills to improve them,” said Guzman. “It is all about learning, acquiring experience and having fun doing what I like.”

After graduation in December, Quiroga wants to work in the audio processing field and pursue a master’s degree.

Guzman wants to one day work for Google or Microsoft.

For more information on the School of Engineering and Computational Sciences, visit utb.edu/engineering or call 956-882-6605.

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It’s amazing how digital image processing is in every aspect of our lives. We make it easier for everyone to use images whether for fun or for their jobs.

Dr. Mahmoud K. Quweider,
Professor
School of Engineering and Computational Sciences

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