Oana Ignat


I am interested in Natural Language Processing, Computer Vision, Machine Learning and Applied Mathematics.

My current research involves detecting visible human activities from transcribed YouTube videos.
Before starting my PhD, I worked in the R&D industry on developing algorithms for self-driving cars. I'm looking to get involved in the ai4good movement, applying AI in problems that have potential to improve the world (climate change, social science, ethics).

I am a PhD Candidate at University of Michigan, member of the Language and Information Technologies lab,
co-advised by Rada Mihalcea and Jia Deng. I'm also a fan of hobbies and a healthy work-life balance.


  • 13th August
    I've started a blog!! It's on this page and it's been on my mind for quite some time.

  • 6th August
    Visiting Italy for the first time! wanted to do it big style: Napoli, Rome, Florence, Milano, Lake Como (Bellano), Venice - checked

  • 28th July
    Attending ACL in Florence, Italy, where I will be presenting a poster for our paper

  • 21st July
    Volunteering for AI4ALL, a program that teaches high school students AI through projects related to ai4good (climate change, social science, ethics, medical)

  • 1st July
    Participating at EEML, a very cool Machine Learning summer school, which I highly recommend!


Graduate Research Assistant

  • Identifying Visible actions in Lifestyle Vlogs paper, accepted to ACL 2019
  • Volunteer for AI4ALL- introduced high school students to AI by teaching them how to code in python and implement an NLP project related to social good: work with HappyDB dataset.
  • Attended and volunteered for NAACL 2019
  • Attended and presented at EEML 2019 - Eastern European Machine Learning summer school
September 2017 - Present

Image Processing Developer

  • Research and implement efficient methods for road detection using raw images from mobile phones
  • Implement camera calibration algorithm
  • 3D reconstruction of scenes using structure from motion
  • Road texture classification using unsupervised clustering algorithms
August 2016 - August 2017

Image Processing Intern

  • Disparity image segmentation for free-space detection paper, accepted to ICCP 2016
  • My undergraduate thesis was done as part of the internship and was about implementing a real-time road recognition algorithm having as input a disparity (depth) image taken from a stereo camera
  • My paper was used by Daimler AG to speed up their road detection algorithms
July 2015 - August 2016


University of Michigan

PhD Candidate
  • Advanced Topics in Computer Vision
  • Natural Language Processing
  • Matrix Methods for Signal Processing
  • AI Foundations
  • Advanced AI

GPA: 3.7

August 2017 - expected August 2022



  • Best Poster Award EEML summer school, 2019
  • Fulbright Student Award Finalist, 2017
  • Best thesis award in Artificial Intelligence for the entire class of 2016 graduates at the “Babes-Bolyai” University, Cluj-Napoca.
    Awarded by the Romanian Institute of Science and Technology, July 1, 2016
  • 2nd Place - Scientific Communication Sessions for Students ClujNapoca, June 16, 2016
  • Jane Street ‘Women in STEM’ Finalist, 2016
  • Over the years I took part in over 60 Mathematics competitions. Here are some of my most important results:
    • 1st Prize - National competition in Mathematics “Euclid” 2013
    • National Olympiad in Mathematics 2012
    • 1st Place - Inter County competition in Mathematics “Dimitrie Pompeiu” 2012
    • 1st Place - Regional Mathematics Olympiad 2012
    • 1st Prize - National competition in Mathematics “Euclid” 2012
    • 2nd Place - Regional Mathematics Olympiad 2011
    • 2nd Prize - National competition in Mathematics “Euclid” 2011
    • Regional Olympiad in Mathematics 2010
    • 2nd Place - Regional Mathematics Olympiad 2009
    • National Olympiad in Mathematics 2009



This will be a blog about anything that crosses my mind and I think it is useful to share ...
with my friends, parents or anyone interested.