90th Anniversary Events

Over course of this year long celebration, SILS hopes to bring you a variety of events.  Below you will find information about those events which have been planned.  

Alumni Lecture
The Future of UX is Remote

Kate Moran (BSIS 2013, MSIS 2015) will be delivering the November of the alumni lecture. The lecture will be given Thursday, November 11, 2-3pm via zoom webinar, registration is required.  Register Here

Abstract: Traditionally, companies have been reluctant to allow their UX designers and researchers to work remotely. The pandemic forced many industries to experiment with remote work, and UX was no exception. This movement towards total or partial remote work has brought benefits for UX practitioners as well as the users they serve — but it also brought new challenges. Join Kate as she considers some of the major challenges faced by the UX teams she helps, as well as her own team at Nielsen Norman Group.

Bio: Kate Moran is a Senior User Experience Specialist with Nielsen Norman Group. She conducts research and leads training seminars to help digital product teams expand and improve their UX practice. Kate has extensive experience conducting user research to guide UX strategy for websites and applications. She provides UX advice to clients from a wide variety of industries, including finance, healthcare, government agencies, ecommerce, B2B, and nonprofit organizations. Kate’s recommendations and research findings are informed by her background in information theory and design, as well as her development experience. Prior to joining NN/g, Kate worked at IBM, first as a Web Content Manager and then later as a Front-End Web Developer. She also worked in UX design for a small web design agency.  Kate holds a Master's degree in Information Science with a specialization in Human-Computer Interaction from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Kate is based in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Alumni Ask Me Anything: Wei Gao

The second in a series of Alumni Ask Me Anything events will take place Friday, December 3 at 12:00pm ET. Register HerePhoto of Wei Gao

Bio: Wei Gao is Chief Operating Officer at Hopin, the leading shared experiences platform that enables immersive and interactive connection from anywhere. In her role, Wei leads operations at one of the fastest growing companies and oversees innovation of Hopin’s shared experiences platform.
Prior to Hopin, Wei was Vice President of Amazon Grocery and served as Technical Advisor to Jeff Bezos. In her nearly 16 years at Amazon, Wei delivered significant improvements to customer experience and business performance in  Commerce, Kindle, and Supply Chain Technologies. She brings deep expertise in organizational transformation, data-driven decision making, and intelligence-based automation.

Wei is a member of the Pacific Science Center Board, the Board of Visitors at the School of Information and Library Science at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and previously served on the Robert Chinn Foundation Board. Wei is a champion for DEI as she was an executive advisor of Asians-at-Amazon affinity group, and in 2019 was recognized as “Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Tech” by the National Diversity Council.

Wei received her bachelor’s degree in Finance from the Nankai University and her master’s degree in Information Science from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

Alumni Lecture Series

Ericka Patillo (MSLS '99, PhD '16)
Director of Graduate Studies
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Wednesday, October 13, 3:00-4:00pm ET

Kate Moran (BSIS '13, MSIS '15)
Senior User Experience Specialist
Nielsen Norman Group
Thursday, November 11, 2:00-3:00pm ET
Watch the recording on our YouTube Channel

Bob Anthony (MSLS, '82)
Curator, North Carolina Collection (retired)
University of North Carolina
January 2022, TBD

Dani Cook (MSLS '13)
Associate Univeristy Librarian, Learning and User Experience
UC San Diego Library
Wednesday, February 16, 2022, 2:00-3:00pm ET

Ashlee Edwards (BSIS, '11, PhD, '16)
Senior Manager, Product Science
Snap, Inc
March 2022, TBD

Alumni Ask Me Anything Series

SILS alumni will discuss their career paths and professional experiences in the Ask Me Anything (AMA) format, answering pre-submitted questions and those posed by participants during the Zoom webinar.

Submit Alumni AMA Questions

Timothy Owens (MSLS ’91)
State Librarian of North Carolina
Friday, October 29, 12:00pm ET
View Recording Here

Wei Gao (MSIS '01)
Cheif Operating Officer, Hopin
Friday, December 3, 12:oopm ET

Meredith Evans (Ph.D '06)
Director, Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum
Friday, January 28, 12:00pm ET


Faculty Ask Me Anything Series

SILS faculty will share their research and expertise in the Ask Me Anything (AMA) format, answering pre-submitted questions and those posed by participants during the Zoom webinar.

Submit Faculty AMA Questions

Friday, August 20, 12:00 pm ET
Francesca Tripodi
Cal Lee
Helen Tibbo
Watch the recording on our YouTube Channel

Friday, August 27, 12:00 pm ET
Megan Winget
Jaime Arguello
Watch the recording on our YouTube Channel

Friday, September 3, 12:00 pm ET
Ron Bergquist
Ray Wang
Melanie Feinberg
Watch the recording on our YouTube Channel

Friday, September 17, 12:00 pm ET
Brian Sturm
Fei Yu
Casey Rawson

Friday, October 1, 12:00 pm ET
Register Now
Ryan Shaw
Rob Capra
Mohammad Jarrahi

Friday, October 15, 12:00 pm ET
Register Now
Stephanie Haas
Sayamindu Dasgupta
Maggie Melo
Matt Perault

Friday, November 5, 12:00 pm ET
Arcot Rajasekar
Brad Hemminger
Amelia Gibson
Javed Mostafa

Watch the recording on our YouTube channel

Symposium on AI and Knowledge Work

Focused talks and panel discussions kick off a year-long examination of how technological developments and social upheavals, including those ushered by the COVID-19 pandemic, will shape information and knowledge work in the years and decades ahead. More information on the continuing discussion can be found here.

SILS faculty and invited experts from around the world will address key questions such as:

  • How are scientists, artists, journalists, designers, curators and other knowledge workers using advanced technologies to amplify and augment how they create and manage new information and knowledge?
  • How are these new ways of working affecting the form and function (nature) of their work and the ways these creators and problem solvers view themselves and their fields?
  • What kinds of effects are these applications of AI in knowledge work having on creative fields, knowledge management, and more broadly on human progress?
  • What kinds of educational initiatives should be considered and implemented to meet the challenges of changing knowledge work?

Support provided by

  Freedom Company Logo

SILS Homecoming

Saturday, September 25
Noon-3:00pm ET 
Alumni and friends are invited back to campus to reminiscence over a picnic lunch and learn what’s happening at SILS now by visiting research labs in Manning Hall and meeting with SILS faculty, including Jaime Arguello, Maggie Melo, Arcot Rajasekar, David Gotz, and Ray Wang, as well as CITAP Executive Director Katy Peters.

To find out who has told us they will be coming to SILS Homecoming check here.

Special thanks to the SILS Alumni Association (SILSAA) for co-sponsoring this event!  

Click here for descriptions of additional sponsorship opportunities, or contact SILS Associate Dean of Development Anne Webb at Anne_Webb@unc.edu or (919) 962-3499 for more information. 

Parking: Note that September 25, is a non-football weekend.  There is no cost to parking on UNC campus during on a non-football Saturday.  Visitors can park in any non-reserved space on campus.