Welcome to Booster!
Volume 13  February  2014
Message from the Director
With February wrapping up, we are hoping winter and the dangerous, harsh weather does, too. Severe weather of all kinds is a concern to many of our partners and first responders. Consequently, we have a number of research projects that incorporate weather reports and social media as an early warning system to severe weather in order to provide a real-world impact for our research applications. Without our end-users and partners to drive our research, and provide challenging problems to solve, we would not have the successes we have experienced thus far. Thank you for your participation, your input, and your partnership.
Two VACCINE Technologies  Featured at DHS First Responder Showcase
VACCINE Director Dr. David Ebert and the Center’s Engagement and Transition Manager, Heather Connell, attended the Department of Homeland Security’s “First Responder Innovation Showcase” hosted by the Office of University Programs (OUP) and the First Responders Group (FRG).The event was held in Washington, D.C. in February. The Showcase featured 15 tools and technologies developed by the DHS Centers of Excellence (COE) for use by first responders, as well as FRG-sponsored innovations. Two VACCINE technologies were selected by DHS to be showcased at the event by Ebert and Connell: GARI (gang graffiti automatic recognition and interpretation system) and ScatterBlogs, a social media analysis system that enhances time-critical decision making during disasters.
There were over 200 attendees representing almost all DHS Components and Offices, other federal agencies, local and state first responders, industry, and academia. Dr. Daniel M. Gerstein, Under Secretary (Acting), Science & Technology Directorate, U.S. Department of Homeland Security gave the keynote address. Each of the COEs also gave a short presentation on selected tools and technologies while also showcasing these innovations at their booths. Feedback from the end-user agencies was overwhelmingly positive, and the showcase generated a significant number of leads for VACCINE with possible new end users.
FedScoop’s coverage of the event highlighted the VACCINE technologies showcased as well as provided a video clip of Ebert’s presentation. For the full story, please click here
HS-STEM Job and Internship Opportunities
On February 5th, the Department of Homeland Security hosted webinar presentations to describe various programs and opportunities that are available to those students seeking internships or permanent positions in the homeland security realm. The webinar consisted of three presentations. Keisha Monroe is the Student Programs Manager and Student and Intern Program Coordinator Officer and she presented on career options for recent graduates in a piece entitled "Pathways: For Students & Recent Graduates to Federal Careers". Deborah Leben, Laboratory Director, Forensic Services Division, United States Secret Service, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, talked about Forensic Science opportunities at the U.S. Secret Service Laboratory. Finally, Roy Gifford a Department of Homeland Security Recruiter for Booz Allen Hamilton, Inc. shared information about the strategy and technology consulting company to provide a perspective from the private sector of Homeland Security fields. 
- VACCINE was represented at at the Innovation Showcase in Washington D.C. on the 11th of February. With Numerous attendees and demonstrations, it was a great event.
- On February 15th, VACCINE PI and Penn State faculty member, Dr. Alan MacEachren was officially inducted as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
- On February 18th, VACCINE Director David Ebert and Managing Director Kaethe Beck got underway on the USCG GreenBrier. The crew removed navigational aids from the Mississippi.
- On February 20th, the CVADA team briefed Vice Admiral Rob Parker and members of Atlantic Area Command on various social  media analysis tools.
- The VACCINE Center at Purdue University had a visit from our CG 771 partners to continue phase II development of cgSARVA on February 25th and 26th. 
- VACCINE will be looking for graduate students in the Fall of 2014 to apply for the HS STEM Fellowship. Additional information can be found here

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