Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University

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Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University

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Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) is a private research university in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The university began as the Carnegie Technical Schools, founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1900. In 1912, the school became Carnegie Institute of Technology and began granting four-year degrees. In 1967, the Carnegie Institute of Technology merged with the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research to form Carnegie Mellon University. The university's 140-acre main campus is 3 miles from Downtown Pittsburgh. Carnegie Mellon has seven colleges and independent schools: the Carnegie Institute of Technology (engineering), College of Fine Arts, Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Mellon College of Science, Tepper School of Business, H. John Heinz III College and the School of Computer Science.

In 2010, the Wall Street JournalĀ ranked Carnegie Mellon 1st in computer science, 4th in finance, 7th in economics, 10th overall, and 21st in engineering according to job recruiters.

Honors: A Technology Powerhouse

Carnegie Mellon News

Carnegie Mellon University News

Pittsburgh International Airport and Carnegie Mellon University are enhancing traveler experiences and airport operations through a partnership to develop new systems and technologies for the aviation industry.

Allegheny County Airport Authority CEO Christina Cassotis and CMU President Farnam Jahanian signed a Memorandum of Understanding today that will allow faculty and students from CMU's Metro21: Smart Cities Institute to research, develop and deploy several innovative projects throughout the airport.

"As county executive, and an alumnus of Carnegie Mellon University, I'm excited about this partnership and look forward to what will be developed through this collaboration," said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. "Innovation is in our DNA in this region and for our airport to reflect the community it serves, it also needs to be part of the airport. Knowing the vision that Christina Cassotis has for our airport, and the ingenuity that President Jahanian brings to CMU, I expect to see great things as these two and their organizations work together."

"Pittsburgh International Airport plays a critical role in our economy and shares our vision for making the Pittsburgh region a model for communities across the world. This agreement will help our Metro21 Institute to continue and expand data-driven projects in a real-world setting," Jahanian said. "With strengths at the nexus of technology and humanity, CMU is uniquely positioned to collaborate with aviation industry experts to optimize and enhance experiences for travelers and workers."

"Carnegie Mellon University is a world-class organization and a leader in innovation and technology that has helped fuel the Pittsburgh region's growth as a tech giant," Cassotis said. "We want the airport to be reflective of that same tech economy that's revolutionizing our region. This partnership with CMU will allow the airport and the traveling public to be at the forefront of that innovation."

CMU and Pittsburgh International Airport have been working together for three years on a variety of projects, several of which focus on access and inclusion. The following projects are representative of the types of work the new partnership will support:

• Researchers from CMU's Traffic21 Institute developed a mobile application that identifies and guides drivers to empty parking spots located closest to terminal entryways, making long-term parking more convenient. A video demonstration of the application is available at

• Pittsburgh International Airport and CMU's Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy have partnered on a series of student capstone projects, the fifth of which will be completed this semester. Teams have been investigating how to better understand the flow patterns of airport travelers, including improving the experience for travelers with reduced mobility. Capstone projects will continue to systematically explore and identify topics for funded research.

• CMU's Cognitive Assistance Lab has been developing and testing NavCog, a smartphone-based navigation system to help people with visual impairments navigate through the airport. The system provides step-by-step directions using Bluetooth Low Energy beacons throughout the airport.

Thu, 19 Apr 2018

Michael Trick, dean of Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar, was part of a Federal Communications Commission team that was awarded the 2018 Franz Edelman Award for Achievement in Advanced Analytics, Operations Research and Management Science from INFORMS, the leading international association for operations research and analytics.

The FCC team created a revolutionary approach to meet the demand for the spectrum used for wireless communication in North America. The FCC conducted the world's first two-sided "Incentive Auction" that reclaims low-band electromagnetic spectrum from TV broadcasters. By purchasing spectrum from TV broadcasters and reselling it to wireless providers, the auction repurposed 84 MHz of TV spectrum for mobile broadband, next-generation "5-G," and other wireless uses. The auction raised nearly $20 billion in revenue, and contributed more than $7 billion to reduce the U.S. federal deficit.

"This was an important project that repurposed spectrum to allow further enhancement of the app- and wireless-economy," Trick said. "Success for this auction relied heavily on advanced optimization and analytics methods."

Trick was appointed dean of CMU-Q in September 2017. The Harry B. and James H. Higgins Professor of Operations Research, Trick has been a faculty member at CMU's Tepper School of Business since 1989. His research specializes in computational methods in optimization. He previously was named a fellow of INFORMS and is president of the International Federation of Operational Research Societies, an umbrella organization of 50 operational research societies whose 51 members represent more than 30,000 academics, professionals and students in more than 45 countries.

Presiding over the event was Ramayya Krishnan, dean of Carnegie Mellon's Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy, and the president-elect of INFORMS.

The prize was awarded at the INFORMS Conference on Business Analytics and Operations Research in Baltimore, Maryland, an event that drew more than 1,000 professionals in analytics and operations research.

Thu, 19 Apr 2018

Funding from Carnegie Mellon University's Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation will stimulate new research initiatives ranging from helping people assess the climate risks of hydroelectric projects to finding a way to produce semiconductors for electronic devices, including electric cars.

The Scott Institute's Seed Grants for Energy Research Program supports faculty research in areas such as energy sources, production, policy and more. Professors can receive up to $75,000. Since 2013, the program has funded six annual rounds of applications and 48 research teams. This year, the Scott Institute and the EQT Foundation provided nearly $284,000 in funding. The EQT Foundation contributed $50,000 to the 2018 program to seed new research into natural gas-related issues.

As part of its mission, the Scott Institute funds strategic energy research across Carnegie Mellon to accelerate new initiatives and connections. Over 145 faculty members are affiliated with the institute and lead research programs spanning energy technology, policy and economics.

"With 27 proposals submitted from Carnegie Mellon faculty members, this sixth round of seed grants was just as competitive as prior rounds, which makes the proposals selected especially notable," said Scott Institute Co-director Andrew Gellman, who manages the seed grant program. "The strong response from CMU researchers indicates their willingness to collaborate on new, innovative projects."

The four projects and faculty members selected for seed grant funding are:

  • Noa Marom, assistant professor of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE), for "Data Driven Discovery of Singlet Fission Materials." Marom and her collaborator will test how singlet fission (when a single photon generates a pair of excited states) can increase solar cell efficiency;
  • Lisa Porter, MSE professor, "To Demonstrate the Growth of Gallium Oxide Crystal Layers." Porter and her team will research why gallium oxide wide bandgap semiconductors should replace traditional silicon-based electronic energy powers. Porter also will illustrate how those semiconductors are more energy- and cost-efficient;
  • H. Scott Matthews, professor in the departments of Civil & Environmental Engineering and Engineering & Public Policy for "Reduced-form Risk Models for Hydropower Projects Under Climate Change." Matthews and his team will evaluate how climate change will affect running water as a renewable energy source based on scenario planning; and
  • Bryan Webler, assistant professor of MSE for "Corrosion Behavior of Variable Composition Steel Thin Films for Sensor Applications." Webler and his research team will test iron-based sensors that can detect natural gas pipeline infrastructure corrosion.

New to this year's round of funding is support for much-needed repairs and upgrades to research equipment. The Scott Institute's support for the 2018 Instrumentation Repair Program allows professors to have equipment replaced, repaired and in some cases moved to different locations to increase collaboration.

"Before we introduced the Instrumentation Repair Program, there was no existing maintenance mechanism for equipment that these researchers rely on," said Jay Whitacre, director of the Scott Institute and Trustee Professor of Energy in the College of Engineering. "This new program allows our researchers to continue their pioneering work in energy research and education here at Carnegie Mellon."

Learn more about the Scott Institute's Seed Grant for Energy Research Program.

Wed, 18 Apr 2018

Carnegie Mellon University alumnus Josh Groban will co-host the 72nd Annual Tony Awards on Sunday, June 10. The live CBS broadcast, which honors the best on Broadway, will air at 8 p.m. ET from Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

Groban, who earned a Tony nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a leading role for his portrayal of Pierre in “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812,” will co-host with Sara Bareilles. Bareilles was nominated for a 2016 Tony for writing the score for “Waitress.”

Fellow alumnus Leslie Odom, Jr., will announce the 2018 Tony Award nominees on May 1 in New York City. Odom took home a 2016 Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a leading role for his performance as Aaron Burr in “Hamilton.”

The American Theatre Wing honors Broadway's best individuals and productions. Carnegie Mellon alumni have won 44 Tony Awards. CMU's School of Drama consistently ranks as one of the world's best drama schools and is recognized as an international leader in arts and technology. Year after year, the School of Drama produces graduates who go on to do award-winning work, both on stage and behind the scenes.

CMU is the exclusive higher education partner of the Tony Awards. As part of the collaboration, the two organizations launched the Tony Honor for Excellence in Theatre Education, the first national recognition program to honor kindergarten through high-school (K-12) theatre educators.

For more information on the Tony Awards, visit and and follow @TheTonyAwards on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

Wed, 18 Apr 2018

Sara Kiesler, the Hillman Chair Emerita of Computer Science and Human-Computer Interaction at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, joining the world's most accomplished scholars, scientists, writers, artists and civic leaders.

Kiesler has served as a program manager at the National Science Foundation, Social and Economic Sciences Division, Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences Directorate since 2016.

Her research has revolutionized the field of human-computer interaction (HCI). She has focused on many of computing's most significant social impacts, including open communication, information sharing and distributed collaboration. She also has brought concepts from social psychology and HCI to robotics, helping to create the new interdisciplinary field of human-robot interaction.

She joins 212 other notables in the American Academy's Class of 2018, including former President Barack Obama, journalist and social commentator Ta-Nehisi Coates, actor Tom Hanks, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and computational linguist Julia Hirschberg. Twenty-two faculty members of Carnegie Mellon University, including 11 from the School of Computer Science, have previously been elected to the 238-year-old Academy.

A full list of the Class of 2018 is available online. They will be inducted during a ceremony this October in Cambridge, Mass.

"This class of 2018 is a testament to the Academy's ability to both uphold our 238-year commitment to honor exceptional individuals and to recognize new expertise," said Nancy C. Andrews, chair of the Board of the American Academy. "John Adams, James Bowdoin, and other founders did not imagine climatology, econometrics, gene regulation, nanostructures, or Netflix. They did, however, have a vision that the Academy would be dedicated to new knowledge - and these new members help us achieve that goal."

Kiesler's previous awards include the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group in Computer-Human Interaction's (SIGCHI), the International Communication Association Williams Prize, and the Joseph E. McGrath Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Study of Groups from the Interdisciplinary Network for Group Research (INGRoup).

The American Academy is one of the country's oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers, convening leaders from the academic, business, and government sectors to respond to the challenges facing the nation and the world.

Wed, 18 Apr 2018

The Miller Gallery and School of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University jointly present "Clearance," April 19-25 in the Miller Gallery. The exhibition includes final thesis works, independent projects and Masters of Urban Design projects from 15 students in CMU's School of Architecture.

The exhibition features a reception from 6 - 8 p.m. Friday, April 20, and two days of undergraduate project reviews from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., April 20-21. There are also Masters of Urban Development project reviews from 10 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 24.The exhibit, reception and reviews are free and open to the public.

"In this exhibition, the thesis students from the School of Architecture's Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Urban Design programs interrogate value — social, cultural, economic, ecologic — as it pertains to contemporary spatial practice," the students wrote in the exhibit program."

"'Clearance' provides a space for this necessary discussion, emphasizing the importance of a transhistorical conception of space as both the producer and the product of culture. It seizes the latencies such a view offers in shaping a situated understanding of the contemporary built environment. Further, the exhibition offers a clearance of processes, ideas and practices drawn from this education. It gives a public face to the candid adaptation of architectural skills as a form of critical practice, cultivating a space for their expanded use in the new present," the students added.

"The S18 thesis/IP studio has operated with energy, creativity and criticality to produce 15 distinct architectural propositions in response to today's deeply divided world," said Mary-Lou Arscott, studio professor and associate head of the School of Architecture. "The results of these speculations are terrifically engaging and give rise to both profound and provocative conclusions."

The Exhibitors + Their Projects:

B.Arch: Nickie Cheung - Contesting Vacancy: Exploring the Multiplicity of Space in Wilkinsburg, PA | Sinan Goral - Mycelium as a Remediator of the Anthropocentric Condition: Rethinking the Brute Force Implications of Progressive-Assembly with Organic Self-Assembly | Nadia Islam - Transcending Bounds: Addressing issues of marginalization within and of the Muslim community through mosque design | KelliLaurel Mijares - Subverting Borders: Examining Barriers in Urban Space | Ivy Faye Monroe - Art Capital: Mapping Postwar New York City Art Culture | Cesar Neri - Mexico 44: Speculative Futures of the Chiapas Highlands | Trent Wimbiscus - Life at the Crossroads: Emergent Landscapes and the Cultural Politics of Automobility | Kyle Wing - Oikonomikos / Polis: The new politics of living | Francis Yang - Existential Schema: Exploring the qualitative design method

MUD: Ernest Bellamy - patch-works | Tamara Cartwright - Hotel to Home: Commoning the Princess Hotel | Yidan Gong - Commoning Gejiaying Village Amidst Metropolitan Wuhan | Paul Moscoso Riofrio - Public accessibility in contested spaces: Imaging a spatially and programmatically diverse approach to the waterfront in the Suburbio of Guayaquil, Ecuador | Chun(Pure) Zheng - Mobile Street Encroachment: Shared Living Space in Lilong, Shanghai | Lu Zhu - Incremental Community

For more information about the exhibition, visit the Miller Gallery website. For further details on the April 20 reception and to RSVP, visit the event Facebook page.

Tue, 17 Apr 2018

Astronomer Robert Kirshner will present Carnegie Mellon University's annual Buhl Lecture at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 24 in the Mellon Institute Auditorium. His lecture, "Exploding Stars, Dark Energy and the Accelerating Cosmos," is free and open to the public.

Kirshner's research using supernovae to trace cosmic expansion was instrumental to the discovery of cosmic acceleration in 1998. Two decades later, Kirshner's lecture will discuss what is now known about this acceleration and the mysterious yet omnipresent dark energy that is believed to drive that acceleration. Kirshner also will discuss how scientists could possibly better understand the nature of dark energy.

Kirshner is the chief program officer for science for the George and Betty Moore Foundation, where he oversees the distribution of more than $100 million in grants annually for basic scientific research. He also is the Clowes Professor of Science Emeritus at Harvard University, where he served on the faculty for three decades and chaired the university's Department of Astronomy. Kirshner's research focused on observing supernovae through a variety of tools, including the Hubble Space Telescope, the MMT Observatory, the Whipple Observatory and the Magellan Telescopes.

Kirshner is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Philosophical Society, and his awards include the National Academy's 2014 Watson Medal, the 2015 Wolf Prize in Physics, the Dannie Heineman Prize in Astrophysics and the Gruber Prize in Cosmology.

The Buhl Lecture is funded under the auspices of the Buhl Professorship in Theoretical Physics and sponsored by the Department of Physics. The Buhl Foundation established the professorship in 1961 to support an outstanding theoretical scientist who would both impact theoretical research and help establish directions for experimental investigations. Fred Gilman has held this chair since 1995. He revived the Buhl Lecture in 1996, bringing a series of internationally recognized scientists to Carnegie Mellon for public lectures.

Tue, 17 Apr 2018

Event: Carnegie Mellon University's annual Spring Carnival and Reunion Weekend is set for April 19-21. This year's carnival will feature over 125 events, including amusement rides, buggy races and theater performances. Many events are free and open to the public, and a full schedule is available online. Follow the weekend on social media with #CMUcarnival.


Spring Carnival Booths
3 to 10 p.m. on Thursday, April 19
11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, April 20, and Saturday, April 21
Rides are open until 11 p.m.
Located on the College of Fine Arts parking lot and lawn
The opening ceremony at 3 p.m. Thursday, April 19, on the Midway will include remarks by CMU President Farnam Jahanian, City of Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students Gina Casalegno, and performances by the CMU Pipe and Kiltie bands. More than 20 student organizations are building booths based on the theme "Myths and Legends," including "The Chronicles of Narnia," "Harry Potter," "Titanic" and "Santa's Workshop." Check out the Spring Carnival website for more information on the booths and the weekend's schedule.

Sweepstakes Buggy Races
8 a.m. to noon on Friday, April 20, and Saturday, April 21
Held on Tech and Frew streets, and Schenley Drive
Buggies are aerodynamic pushcarts designed and built by student organizations. Each team includes five students who push the buggy in a relay-style race while a driver steers around the 4,400-foot course. Just an inch off the ground, buggies also roll freely reaching speeds of nearly 40 miles per hour. Student organizations cmuTV and WRCT 88.3-FM will broadcast the event on their websites.

Mobot Races
Noon to 2 p.m., Friday, April 20
Race course outside Wean Hall
The School of Computer Science invites students, staff and even alumni to show off their creative and technological skills in the Mobot races. Teams will race small, autonomous vehicles ("MObile roBOTs") along a slalom-style course.

Scotch 'n' Soda Theatre presents "Chicago"
7 p.m. on Thursday, April 19
7 p.m. and 11 p.m., Friday, April 20
2 p.m. and 7 p.m., Saturday, April 21
Performances in Rangos Ballroom, Jared L. Cohon University Center, second floor
Scotch 'n' Soda, a student-run theatre organization, will host multiple performances throughout Spring Carnival. Tickets may be purchased online or at the door: $5 with a CMU ID and $10 general admission.

Traffic Alert

The City of Pittsburgh has granted permits to close several Oakland-area roads during CMU's Spring Carnival and Sweepstakes buggy races.

Margaret Morrison Street, Tech Street, Frew Street, Circuit Road and Schenley Drive (Panther Hollow and Schenley bridges included) will be closed from 5 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, April 20, and Saturday, April 21. Both City of Pittsburgh Police and Carnegie Mellon Police will be present during the races to help monitor traffic. Roads will re-open by 1:30 p.m. If inclement weather causes the cancellation of the Friday and Saturday competitions, races will be held Sunday, April 22, during the same time frame.

Phipps Conservatory will remain open during normal hours. Due to road closures, visitors will need to park on the streets by Carnegie Library and the surrounding area. City of Pittsburgh Police stationed at barricades will give bus drivers instructions for passenger unloading.

Free parking will be available in the East Campus Garage on a first-come, first-served basis on Saturday, April 21. More parking information is available on CMU's Alumni Association website.

Fri, 13 Apr 2018

When Lance LaDuke began brainstorming how his Tartan Tuba Band could help celebrate Carnegie Mellon University's 50th anniversary at Spring Carnival, he knew it had to be something fun and unexpected. And what could be more unexpected than a tuba and euphonium ensemble covering The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," an iconic album that CMU students would have been listening to 50 years ago?

"Two-thirds of each semester is spent going deep on very difficult and challenging repertoire. We then spend a third of the semester doing something that's more outward-facing and more fun," said LaDuke, director of the band. "It is no secret that being a student at the college level is very intense. I firmly believe that if I can provide an outlet for them by bringing some joy and fun to the thing they are studying, then I am doing those students a favor. It's an indication that life is more than work."

The Tartan Tuba Band is composed of 12 students, six of whom have contributed arrangements from the "Sgt. Pepper's" album for the Spring Carnival performance. First-year euphonium master's degree student and Tartan Tuba Band member Abigail Lannan said the arrangement process has been simpler than she expected it to be. Lannan said the students started by considering the essential elements of each song and then arranging music for the instruments in the band.

"We work together and, eventually, it comes out sounding the best that it can. It has been a lot of fun," Lannan said.

LaDuke said he has been very impressed with the quality of the arrangements being produced by the students. Even though this performance is about fun, he said there is an educational element to the project.

"Not only are they figuring out how we will play these tunes, but they are also learning about event production," LaDuke said. "How far in advance do we need to plan? What kinds of questions do we need to ask? Who's going to handle the set-up? Interpersonally, they are learning about how to tell our friend that we're not crazy about an arrangement. It is exposing students to the sorts of challenges that they will experience as pros, but giving them a safe environment to go stretch and try things they might not ordinarily be asked to do."

Singers, guitarists, a bagpiper and other instrumentalists will join the Tartan Tuba Band to perform the concert. Sophia Masterson, a sophomore voice major, is looking forward to collaborating with an instrumental group with which she does not usually have the opportunity to perform. Masterson said she is hopeful the audience will sing-a-long, tap their feet and appreciate how unique the song covers will be.

"I've never sung with a bunch of tubas, so this experience should be really cool," Masterson said.

Fri, 13 Apr 2018

Two Carnegie Mellon University students have received 2018 Barry Goldwater Scholarships to encourage their pursuit of research careers in math and engineering.

Alexander Baikovitz, a mechanical engineering and robotics student in CMU's College of Engineering, and Andrew Kwon, a mathematical sciences honors student in CMU's Mellon College of Science, are among 211 students to receive the scholarship this year. They were selected from more than 1,200 sophomores and juniors nationwide. Given by the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, the award provides up to $7,500 per year for tuition, fees, books and room and board for up to two years.

CMU has been home to 33 Goldwater scholars.

"What stands out among our Goldwater winners — Alexander Baikovitz and Andrew Kwon — is how they have taken full advantage of all the resources available at Carnegie Mellon and elsewhere to pursue their interests," said Stephanie Wallach, assistant vice provost for Undergraduate Education. "They have developed depth in their fields and built strong mentor relationships by pursuing research. They are committed to creating new knowledge and advancing their fields."

"These traits are the mark not only of a Goldwater Scholar, but they are also the mark of highly talented people with the promise of making important contributions in the future," said Richelle Bernazzoli, assistant director of Undergraduate Research and National Fellowships.

Baikovitz said the scholarship would help him toward his goal of becoming a leader in robotics and its implementation in space. The sophomore has secured an internship at SpaceX, where he will be working on their Crew Dragon structure for their crew capsule. For Baikovitz, it's "a dream come true."

"I would like to one day find myself in a place somewhere between industry and research," Baikovitz said. "I believe that is where a lot of breakthroughs and innovations are coming from."

Baikovitz's interest in robots that operate in environments inaccessible to humans drew him to CMU. He said some of his greatest influences have come from the university, where he's been able to help solve real-world problems.

"I have learned so much from my peers and my professors. Specifically, Red Whittaker, one of the pioneers of field robotics, has been a great mentor and influence on my pursuit for a career in aerospace and nuclear robotics," Baikovitz said. "It has been amazing to work with individuals who have both changed the world and changed me."

Kwon, a junior who is planning a research career in number theory and algebraic geometry, said he is excited to have his potential as a scholar and researcher recognized by the Goldwater Foundation.

Last summer, through a program funded by the National Science Foundation, Kwon conducted research under Joe Gallian at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, on a new line of inquiry in additive combinatorics, a branch of number theory that studies how sets of integers behave under addition. Kwon developed a conjecture that identified a general explanation of the properties of complementable sets. His work has been submitted for publication, and, if justified, his conjecture could explain all observed phenomena in this area of study.

Kwon helped establish the Carnegie Mellon University Informatics and Mathematics Competition, which brings high school students from across the country to CMU to compete in subject tests.

Participation has grown from 120 competitors in 2016 to 400 in 2018. Some competitors have gone on to study at CMU.

"They've told me, 'Your competition made CMU really stand out to me, and it's why I'm here now,'" Kwon said. "That's really incredible to be able to have that kind of impact."

Thu, 12 Apr 2018