Spring 2022 ITP Faculty, Staff and Student Awards

Eric Perez | May 3, 2022

For the second year, the USC Viterbi Information Technology Program recognizes the outstanding faculty, staff, and course teaching assistants who have worked tirelessly to embody ITP's vision of making technology accessible to all USC students. 

Jeffrey Miller (Director, ITP) and Kendra Walther (Associate Director, ITP) led the award ceremony this year. This year's awardees included ITP faculty, staff and a couple of students who have most embodied ITP's fundamental mission of "providing technology education for all". This mission is what guides ITP to provide high-quality technical education to both Viterbi and non-Viterbi students, allowing ITP to continuously improve and grow as a program each year. Awardees are given an award certificate, and are honored on ITP's Awards page, as well as being honored on ITP's Awards plaque, which will be on display on the second floor of the RRB building (RRB201).

Faculty/Staff Awards

There were many considerations to make for this year's ITP awards, ITP director Jeffrey Miller mentioned several times that there were many ITP faculty, staff and students that were deserving of an award this year. The awardees this year are recognized for having worked tirelessly not only to provide USC students will high quality instruction, but also to serve ITP through volunteering in a variety of committees that help ITP move forward and become a more distinguished and crucial program within Viterbi. 



Director's Award for Faculty

Nitin Kale

Professor of Information Technology Practice and Industrial and Systems Engineering Practice

The Director's Award for Faculty recognizes the faculty member who most embodies the ITP mission of “providing technology education for all” through excellent teaching and service to ITP and all its constituents. For many semesters now, former ITP assistant chair Nitin Kale has been working very hard to create new programs while ensuring the quality of instruction that his classes are known to have remained high. 

Nitin's recent work as the lead on ITP's newest minor "Applied Artificial Intelligence" has been crucial in having the minor approved in time to make it into ITP's curriculum in time for Fall 2022. has been ITP students frequently speak highly of Nitin, which makes sense, as his courses are usually the first to fill up come registration time. Thank you, Nitin, for all of your hard work!

Student quote - “Thank you for being such an amazing professor and person. This was one of my favorite classes at USC.


Director's Award for Staff

Eric Perez

Associate Director, Advising & Recruitment

The Spring 2022 ITP Directors Award for Staff was awarded to one of ITP's Academic Advisors, Eric Perez. Eric has been instrumental in keeping ITP afloat in the midst of ITP's recent growth in students. Being hired during the midst of COVID-19, Eric had to learn to adapt quickly to the fully remote modality experienced due to Covid. Eric has been supporting over 1300 ITP minor and specialization students, and over 3000 students taking ITP classes a semester. Eric's ability and willingness to contribute to diverse tasks and projects has allowed for ITP to operate smoothly during the past year. In addition, Eric has trained two new advisors for ITP, which has impacted the overall effectiveness of the ITP advising team. Eric is an extremely valuable part of ITP and a great fit for this year's Directors Award for Staff.



Associate Director's Award for Service

Matthew Whiting

Senior Lecturer of Information Technology Practice

The Associate Director's Award for Service has been awarded to Professor Matthew Whiting, in recognition of his dedication and service to ITP in many ways. From supporting ITP's Merit Review Process and Evaluations, to contributing to ITP's full-time Faculty search and ITP's Industry Advisory Board, to remodeling and reinvigorating ITP's Video Game Production minor, which includes the development of new classes, Matthew Whiting has done an amazing job this year.



Associate Director's Award for Teaching

Trina Gregory

Associate Professor of Information Technology Practice

This award recognizes the full-time faculty member who exhibits excellence in ITP teaching through innovation, energy, and effectiveness. This year, Professor Trina Gregory has been awarded with the Associate Director's Award for Teaching for her passion and dedication to leading the teaching efforts of ITP-115, which ITP's largest gateway course, and serves as the foundation to the bulk of ITP minor and specialization programs. More than 1200 students have taken ITP-115 in 2021-2022.

Student Quote - “She is great! Great teacher, passionate about her job, caring for her students. She made python fun! Her enthusiasm and passion to teach the course made me more eager to learn from her. Her positive attitude made me want to learn more from her.



Associate Director's Award for Part-Time Teaching

Gregory Pohlner

Part-Time Lecturer of Information Technology

The Associate Director's Award for Part-Time Teaching recognizes the part-time faculty member who exhibits excellence in ITP teaching through innovation, energy, and effectiveness. This year it has been given to Gregory Pohlner, for his teaching enthusiasm, spanning across multiple ITP programming classes.

Student Quote - “I thrived in this course because of how it was structured and how you, as a professor, approached teaching the material. I truly appreciate your availability and support throughout this semester. I am excited to take courses with you next semester!” 

Student Awards

This year's student awards were in recognition of course teaching assistants who have worked hard to support ITP faculty and students over the 2021-2022 academic year. Without ITP's stellar teaching assistants, ITP would have a lot more trouble accommodating our large number of students, and would not run as smoothly as it does. Their support truly allows the program to be more accessible to students all over campus.

Associate Director's Awards for Course Teaching Assistant Awardees:


Neuton Foo, ITP-303

5 Semesters


Harry Hao, ITP-104

2 Semesters


Lucia Jiang
, ITP-115

5 Semesters

Gabriel Lacayo, ITP-380

4 Semesters


Published on May 3rd, 2022

Last updated on May 2nd, 2024