The Secret Lives of Millennial CS Assistant Professors (Part 2)

  1. CSE 132C: Database System Implementation
  2. CSE 234: Data Systems for Machine Learning
  3. DSC 102: Systems for Scalable Analytics
Slide from my CSE 234 and DSC 102 on the many data-centric hats that data scientists/ML engineers wear in the Data Sourcing stage of the ML lifecycle. Most prior ML/data mining courses fail to cover such tasks in depth, while most prior DB courses cover them too generically, ignoring ML-specific nuances.
Grand Prize Winners in my DSC 102 Meme Competition. AWS/cloud and Dask are just so memeworthy. :) See more memes by the students on my Tumbr page:
At the fun HDSI Faculty Retreat in Fall 2021. Some of us hiked down to Black’s Beach.
A panel from another memoir I wrote: “The arc of the moral universe is long” and dotted with dehumanization and injustices that still cast a long shadow over our present. It “bends toward justice” only if we — all of us — consciously work to bend it. Being oblivious, callously ignoring inequities, living in denial, or covering up truths will not help.
  1. Directly mentoring students from marginalized groups.
  2. Systemic efforts for my department/university/city.
  3. Systemic efforts for my research community.
At the oSTEM National Conference in Fall 2018 with the student contingent from UCSD. CSE/UCSD was an academic sponsor that year. I helped run a booth to answer questions and recruit students to apply to UCSD. We also handed out pamphlets and swag from various UCSD departments/divisions.
Only the bridge is supposed to be dark orange in this photo. :-/ California is especially vulnerable to the climate change crisis. Photo credit and copyright:
L to R: San Diego Comic-Con in 2018. Shockingly, I was the only one there with an Infinity Gauntlet! Munich for VLDB’17. View of the historic Marienplatz. Rio for VLDB’18. Likely the most relaxing urban beaches I have ever seen, San Diego included! Amsterdam for SIGMOD’19. Near the Anne Frank House with my husband.
Joking about what makes an “ML researcher” in the era of expanding work on ML systems.
A still of Buddhist nun and chef, Jeong Kwan, from one of my favorite Netflix series, Chef’s Table. This episode is a beautiful lesson on expressing one’s creativity without letting envy destroy it. Read more about her life here:



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Arun Kumar

Arun Kumar


Associate Professor at UC San Diego CSE and HDSI. Research on data management and machine learning systems. Freethinker. Poet. Memester. Gay. He/him.