Longtime ABET Expert Cary Laxer is being recognized by his international peers for his lifetime of service to computer science education. He will be honored with the 2021 SIGCSE Award for Lifetime Service to the Computer Science Education Community on March 15 at SIGCSE TS 2021, the 52nd ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education, the Association of Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group in Computer Science Education’s virtual conference.
The SIGCSE organization provides a forum for educators to discuss issues related to the development, implementation and evaluation of computing programs, curricula and courses, as well as syllabi, laboratories and other elements of teaching and educational development.
Laxer has played a key role in the SIGCSE conference as a volunteer who has helped oversee the annual event’s registration procedures for 25 years. His service on the committee will end with this year’s conference. He also has attended nearly every SIGCSE conference since the late 1980s and made several technical presentations throughout the years with students, department faculty colleagues and scholars from throughout the world.
Laxer is professor emeritus and former computer science and software engineering department head at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. He helped pave the way for enormous change within computer science education — at Rose-Hulman and across the country. Under his leadership as department chair, Rose-Hulman’s academic area grew incrementally in student enrollment and faculty stature, moved into renovated office and laboratory spaces in the campus’ largest academic building, Moench Hall, and added an emphasis in software engineering as well as an academic major in international computer science.
Laxer also helped enhance computer science programs at other colleges and universities as an ABET Program Evaluator (PEV) and computer science education consultant. He currently serves on the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) Executive Committee of ABET as 2020-2021 Chair, in addition to serving on the Accreditation Council of ABET. Laxer first got involved with ABET as PEV for CSAB in 2002.
Laxer joined the Rose-Hulman faculty in 1981 after earning his doctorate from Duke University in 1980 and a bachelor’s degree from New York University in 1976. He retired from full-time teaching in 2017 and remained as a part-time instructor until 2019. During his faculty tenure, Laxer earned the Dean’s Outstanding Teacher Award in 1986 and was given honorary alumni status by the Rose-Hulman Alumni Association in 2002.