My student Michael Bannister passed his thesis defense this afternoon. Michael has published nearly a dozen papers on topics involving graph algorithms and computational geometry (see his home page for a complete listing). His thesis research involved lower bounds and fixed-parameter upper bounds for graph drawing: inapproximability of layout compaction, the use of Galois theory to prove the nonexistence of exact algorithms for optimizing the vertex placement in many styles of graph drawing, and parameterized algorithms for one-page and two-page crossing minimization.

Michael has also been one of our most popular teaching assistants and has enthusiastically encouraged undergraduates to take part in research projects, leading to a poster at last year's Graph Drawing symposium and an ongoing project that we hope to turn into another publication. Next year he'll be putting those skills to good use as a visiting assistant professor at Pomona College, a highly selective private school also located in Southern California, while his wife (another theoretician, Jenny Lam) finishes her own doctorate.

Congratulations, Michael, and congratulations Pomona! Our loss is your gain.


Congratulations to Michael, his wife, and his professor.
Definitely a great co-author. Congratulations!