I am an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Virginia Tech, where I lead the Perception and LANguage (PLAN) Lab. I am also a member of the Sanghani Center for Artificial Intelligence and Discovery Analytics, and an affiliate faculty member of the National Security Institute and the Center for Advanced Innovation in Agriculture.

Prior to VT, I spent a year as a research scientist (Research Staff Member) at IBM Almaden Research Center, working on Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, and Information Retrieval problems. I obtained my Ph.D. from the Computer Science Department, University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign, under the supervision of Prof. ChengXiang Zhai, Text Information Management and Analysis Group (TIMAN). I was selected as an EECS Rising Star participant in 2019.

My research interests are broadly defined at the intersection of Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and Data Science. My work revolves around machine learning challenges related to data, e.g., learning with limited imperfect supervision, self-supervision, zero-shot learning, adversarial training, essentially work under the theme of Data Quality in Machine Learning, and multi-modal learning with applications to Vision + Language, e.g., (bio)medical imaging, embodied AI, language grounding, text-to-video generation, etc. Overall, I am interested in building intelligent task assistants that augment human intelligence. I have extensively collaborated on transdisciplinary projects that touch societal dimensions, in areas ranging from Health Informatics and Genomics to Education, Manufacturing, and Social Computing.


  • October, 2023: Grateful to Amazon-VT for the new funding to continue work on Embodied AI.
  • October 2023: Congratulations to Ying (co-advised with Lifu Huang) for receiving an Amazon-VT Fellowship!
  • August, 2023: Excited to receive new DARPA ECOLE funding as part of the STR team!
  • May, 2023: Received a VT COE 2023 Dean’s Award for Excellence as an Outstanding New Assistant Professor!
  • March, 2023: Joined the NeurIPS 2023 and IEEE BigData 2023 Organizing Committees as a Workshop co-Chair and a Vice Program Chair, respectively.
  • March, 2023: Invited talk at UMass CIIR Talk Series.
  • March, 2023: Attending the ImageXD workshop, an invite only two-day workshop hosted by UC Berkeley’s Berkeley Institute for Data Science (BIDS) and the Academic Data Science Alliance (ADSA). Thank you to the organizers for putting together an exciting program!
  • Feb, 2023: Team PLANBot is selected as one of the 10 university teams for the Alexa Prize TaskBot Challenge 2! We are grateful for the funding and support from Amazon Alexa AI.
  • Feb, 2023: Exciting times to do research in AI/ML for Healthcare (ML4H). Read our PLOS Digital Health editorial on what ChatGPT passing the USMLE exam tells us about medical education here.
  • Feb, 2023: Serving as Area Chair (AC) for ACL’23 and MICCAI’23, and as Medical Computer Vision Section Editor for the PLOS Digital Health Journal.
  • Jan, 2023: Talk at STR: Robust Visual Understanding with Limited Supervision.
  • Dec, 2022: Thank you to the Commonwealth Cyber Initiative (CCI) for the new funding!
  • Nov, 2022: Gave a talk on multimodal explainable AI models for clinical reasoning (slides) at the Critical Care Data Analysis Summit and Tarragona Datathon 2022.
  • Oct, 2022: Excited to receive an Amazon-VT Faculty Research Award to work on Embodied AI research!
  • Oct, 2022: Attending INFORMS’22 and presenting our privacy-preserving data sharing work.
  • Oct, 2022: Will be giving a talk on self-supervised machine learning at the VT Statistics Colloquium.
  • August, 2022: Co-organizing the first-ever NeurIPS 2022 Gaze Meets ML workshop.
  • August, 2022: Excited to receive new DARPA KMASS funding!
  • July, 2022: Thank you to the Commonwealth Cyber Initiative (CCI) for funding our proposal on ML-based automated code repair. Looking foward to working with PI Daphne Yao and Co-PI Bimal Viswanath.
  • June, 2022: Will be giving a keynote at ACM PETRA 2022. Also serving as the PETRA’22 Doctoral Consortium Chair. Looking forward to meeting students and conference attendees.
  • April, 2022: Thrilled to join the NeurIPS 2022 Organizing Commitee as an Expo co-Chair!
  • March, 2022: Gave a talk at the Women in STEM Mentoring Seminars. Slides are available here.
  • February, 2022: We are grateful to receive an NSF EAGER CMMI-AM grant!