Congratulations to Keegan Yao on receiving the UConn Summer Undergraduate Research Funds (SURF) Award for his project titled: Phylogenetic Tree Completions with Minimal Robinson-Foulds Distance. SURF Awards support full-time undergraduate students in summer research or creative projects.
Keegan’s project focuses on the development of novel algorithms for optimal completion of incomplete phylogenetic trees. This problem arises naturally whenever phylogenetic trees with non-identical leaf sets must be compared, but no efficient algorithms currently exist for the problem. Keegan’s research project seeks to develop the first such algorithms. Keegan, slated to receive a dual degree in Computer Science and Mathematics, is mentored by Computer Science & Engineering Professor Mukul Bansal.
This year’s SURF awardees were selected from an exceptionally strong group of applicants representing diverse areas of academic study. A complete list of UConn SURF awardees is available at https://ugradresearch.uconn.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/323/2020/05/2020-SURF-Awards.pdf.