Presidential Fellows

TCV presidential fellows are competitively selected from all university doctoral students based on research interests, skill sets, and productivity level.

Bhashithe Abeysinghe is pursuing a Ph.D. in Computer Science. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka.  His expertise is in Parallel Computing, Artificial Neural Network and Artificial Intelligence.

Abeysinghe’s research framework includes social media analytics with a concentration in Natural Language Processing used in classifying tweets.  His work explores the domains of Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems. That includes: Neural Language Model, Recurrent Neural Networks in Language and Artificial General Intelligence.

Abeysinghe’s ongoing research has been testing different models of Deep Neural Networks such as Recurrent Neural Networks (RNN), Gated Recurrent Units (GRUs), Long Short Term Memory (LSTM) models, Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN) and Fully Convolutional Neural Networks (FCNNs). He then gauges the behavior and performance in different environmental conditions.

During his time as a lecturer at the University of Peradeniya, Abeysinghe taught Structure Oriented Programming, Image Processing Practical Data Structures and Computer Graphics.

Abeysinghe has experience creating CNN, FCNN and other SOTA classification and detection models.   His also has experience working with logistic regression, Naive Bayes classifier and SVM.   His research framework also includes: Model selection mechanisms as Cross validation and Grid search, SLURM computer clusters, Apache Spark, as well as GNU/Linux systems

Abeysinghe is a member of the Free Software Foundation and speaks fluent English and Sinhala.

Research and Published Studies:

Abeysinghe, T. M, M. B., Gunethilaka, B.B.J., Nawarathna, R.D. (2016).  “Opinion Mining on Various Aspects of Health Through Social Media Analytics Using Collective Sentiment Feature Analysis and Deep Neural Networks” University of Peradeniya.  Sri Lanka.  Proceedings iPurse.


Alumni Prize for Excellence in Computer Science, University of Peradeniya, National Department of Statistics and Computer Science.  (2017)

Ari Fodeman is currently pursuing a Ph.D. and M.A. in Community Psychology.  He received a M.A. in Government from The Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya (IDC) with an emphasis on Conflict Resolution, Counter-Terrorism and Political Psychology.  Fodeman also earned two Bachelor of Art degrees from American University in 2014. He received his first B.A. in Psychology and another in International Relations.

Using both qualitative and quantitative social research methods, Fodeman studies terrorism, political violence, and extremism (dis/re-) engagement and prevention.  His current work with Dr. John Horgan focuses on a MINERVA-granted project on Muslim converts’ overrepresentation in terrorism.

Fodeman created a systematic case review and meta-coding procedure and is currently testing ordinal logistic versus zero-inflated negative binomial estimations of indicators of latent activism and radicalism.

Fodeman is a currently a member of The Institute of Counter-Terrorism (Herzliya), The International Society of Political Psychology, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology.  Fodeman’s expertise includes meta-analysis, HLM, SEM, longitudinal analysis, and count modeling using statistical software such as Excel, SPSS, SAS, MPlus, R, CMA, & HLM. Fodeman speaks Spanish (intermediate), Arabic (beginner), and Hebrew (beginner).


Fodeman, A. (2018). The Impact of Globalization on Nativism: Competing Approaches and an Empirical Test. (MA thesis dissertation) The Interdisciplinary Institute, Herzliya, Israel.

Fodeman, A. (2015). Safety and danger valves: functional displacement in American anti-abortion terrorism. Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression, 7(3): 169-183.


Fodeman, A. (2018). The Impact of Globalization on Nativism: Competing Approaches and an Empirical Test. The Society for Social and Personality Psychology, Self & Identity Preconference poster. Presentation, Atlanta, GA.

Fodeman, A. (2017). Functional Displacement in American Anti-Abortion Terrorism. The Society for Terrorism Research conference. Presentation, New York, NY.

Fodeman, A. (2017). An Introduction to Psychology and its Application to Terrorism Research. The Sutton School System, Presentation, Atlanta, GA.

Fodeman, A. (2016). Why National ‘Unity’ Composition Explains Exceptions of Modern Right-Wing Populism. CEU Political Psychology of Populism workshop. Presentation, Budapest, Hungary.

Kristian Kastner Warpinski is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Political Science with a concentration in International Relations and Research Methods. In 2014, she received her Master of Arts, with honors, in International Conflict and Security from the University of Kent: Brussels School of International Studies.  In 2013, she earned a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a concentration in International and Comparative Studies from the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.

Warpinski’s work focuses on international security and children's rights. Primary areas of interest are (counter)terrorism, foreign fighting, youth radicalization, and effective disengagement. She is currently working with Dr. Mia Bloom on a Minerva Research Initiative funded project to map the mobilization of children into violent extremist organizations.  That includes developing case studies of child involvement in Boko Haram (Nigeria) and Al Shabaab (Somalia).

While earning her MA, Warpinski also worked with the European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center in Brussels, Belgium as a Research Intern focused on Africa.  She monitored open source intelligence and published real-time alerts on security concerns, including: terrorism, piracy, ethnic and sectarian violence.

In 2018, she was awarded an American Political Science Association (APSA) First Generation Scholar’s Travel Grant.  She is a member of the American Political Science Association, the British International Studies Association, and the Society of Terrorism Research.

She speaks French (Intermediate reading and writing; introductory conversational)  and is currently learning Modern Standard Arabic. 

Saad Ullah Khan is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Political Science.  He earned an M.Phil in International Relations from the National Defense University in Islamabad, Pakistan.  He also holds an M.S. in International Relations.  Khan’s research interests include civil wars and state building; conflict and terrorism and political behavior in emerging and established democracies.  He is currently part of the team working on Department of Defense's $1.6 million grants on Documenting the Virtual Caliphate and Preventing the Next Generation.

His research focuses on conflict and violence, and extremist ideology on social media platforms, as well as military assistance effectiveness.  He has worked as an Instructor at the National Defence University in Islamabad where he taught Introduction to International Relations.

Khan’s work has appeared in national and international media outlets.  His expertise includes data analysis with R, SPSS, STATA, MS Office, Python.  He is a member of the American Political Science Association, the British International Studies Association, the International Studies Association and the International Political Science Association.  He speaks Arabic, English, Hindi, Persian, Punjabi, and Urdu.


Khan, S., [forthcoming 2019]. "When Guns Stop Flying In: An Example of Security Assistance Effectiveness from Pakistan" Paper to be presented at the 44th Annual BISA Conference 2019; Midwestern Political Science Association (MPSA) 2019; Terrorism and Social Media Conference at the Swansea University, U.K.

Khan, S., [forthcoming 2019].  “Social Media as a Murder Weapon: Evidence from South Asia." Paper to be presented at the Terrorism and Social Media Conference at the Swansea University, U.K.

Khan, S., [forthcoming 2019].  "Does Socio-Religious Opposition Against Female Voting Impact The Actual Turnout: Evidence From Pakistan," Midwestern Political Science Association (MPSA) Chicago, IL.

Khan, S., [forthcoming 2019].  “Social Media As An Accessory To Murder: Socio-religious Violence In South Asia and How The Social Media Is Abetting It”  Paper presented at the Terrorism and Social Media Conference.  Swansea, U.K.

Khan, S., (2016) "Counterterrorism Strategies and Ethnic Divisions: A Case of Pakistan," National Counterterrorism Conference, Islamabad, Pakistan

Selected Media Mentions:

2018 Has Trump Put Pakistan On Notice? January

2017 Don’t Shed Fake Tears Over Jerusalem December

2017 The Kurdish Referendum Should Go On September

2017 The Global Community Must Save The Rohingyas From Extinction September

2017 Trump’s Afghan Strategy Is Doomed For Failure August

Ayse Lokmanoglu is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Communication Studies.  Lokmanoglu earned her M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University.  She earned a B.A. in Economics and Near Eastern Studies from Cornell University.  Her research focus is on women in militant, non-state organizations, trends in how such groups communicate online, and how proto-states develop.

Lokmanoglu has conducted research in numerous regions, including:  Ankara, Istanbul, Mersin and Izmir, Turkey.  Her research includes frequent visits to Non-Camp Refugee Living Sites to carry out aid work and interviews with local non-governmental organizations.

Research and Published Studies:

Winkler, C. and Lokmanoglu, A. [forthcoming 2019]. Terrorism and Counterterrorism. In Handbook of Communication and Security, Bean, H. & Taylor, B. New York:  Routledge

Bloom, M. and Lokmanoglu, A. [forthcoming 2019]. Conducting Field Work in a Virtual Space, Exploring ISIS’ Encrypted Messaging on Telegram. In An Unorthodox Guide to Fieldwork, Eds. O. Szekely & P. Krause. Columbia University Press.


“A textual and visual analysis of ISIS Media Channels for Women” Paper Presentation Middle Eastern Studies Association (MESA) 2018 Annual Conference, San Antonio TX, USA, November 2018

“Fatal Attraction: ISIS’s Media Strategy for Appealing and Recruiting Women” Paper Presentation VOX-Pol Violent Extremism, Terrorism, and the Internet: Present and Future Trends Conference, Amsterdam Netherlands, August 2018.


 Mustafa Salama is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Political Science.  He possesses an M.A. in Political Science with a concentration in Comparative Politics from the American University in Cairo.  He also earned a B.A. from the American University in Cairo in Political Science with a specialization in Political Economy.

Salama has experience working in Egyptian domestic affairs and consulting political parties in Egypt on issues dealing with international relations. Salama has experience in democracy and consensus building, conflict resolution, and peace mediation. His writings have appeared in publications including: the Middle East Eye, Aljazeera, Asia Times, and Al-Arabiya.

His experience includes work as a Consultant for the World Council of Churches, Regional Mena, and Europe De-Radicalization Forum.  He also served as an International Relations Consultant with the Foreign Relations Committee (Alwattan Party).  In 2012, Salama also worked as Assistant to the Assistant of the President for Social Outreach in Cairo, Egypt.

Salama’s work is focused on Asia, the Middle East, and global affairs. Salama is fluent in Arabic and English.  He speaks advances Turkish and Beginning Farsi and some Urdu and French.

Krishanu Sarker is a pursuing a Ph.D. in Computer Science with the Department of Computer Science.  He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Dhaka in 2014.

Sarker’s research framework covers Data Mining, Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Neural Network.  His primary focus is in Computer Vision and Deep Learning. His current research goal is to develop data efficient learning of Deep Neural Networks.

Sarker has worked on diverse research topics in Computer Science. He began his research experience studying Body Sensor Networks and also worked on Seismic Underearth Imaging.  His current research is focused on Developing Data Efficient Learning methodology for Deep Neural Net Models and stabilizing Generative Adversarial Network.

Sarker serves as Intel’s AI Student Ambassador for Georgia State University.  He is a member of the ACM, IEEE and the Computer Science Club.

 His background includes extensive programming skills, including Languages: Python, C/C++, Java, Matlag/Octave Databases: MongoDB, MySQL Platforms & Frameworks: Unix, Pytorch, Tensorflow, Caffe, OpenCV, NS-3, and CORE.  He also speaks fluent English and Bangla.

Research and Published Studies:

Sarker, K., Masoud, M.E.,  Belkasim, S. Shihao, J. [forthcoming 2019] “Towards Robust Human Activity Recognition from RGB Video Stream with Limited Labeled Data”.  IEEE International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications Orlando, FL: ICMLA.

Masoud, M.E., Sarker, K., Belkasim, S., Chahine, I. (2018) “Automatically Generated Semantic Tags of Art Images”.  International Conference on Signal and Image Processing Applications (ICSIPA) Kuching, Malaysia: IEEE.

Goutham Kamath, Pavan Agnihotri, Maria Valero, Krishanu Sarker, Wen-Zhan Song, (2016).  “Pushing Analytics to the Edge” Global Communications Conference  Washington, DC: IEEE.

 Sharbani Pandit, Krishanu Sarker, Md. Abdur Razzaque, A. M. Jehad Sarker, “An energy-efficient QoS aware multiconstrained MAC protocol for Body Sensor Networks”, Springer’s Multimedia Tools and Applications, April 2014.


Sarker is the recipient of the DELL-EMC Grand Prize at the Scientific Computing Day Conference in 2018.

He also received the Best Poster award at the SCD conference in the Advanced Analytics track.

Some of Sarker’s past work includes Real-time Monitoring of Crop Diseases and Pests Using Image Sensor Network Technology.  That 2014 work was funded by Bangladesh’s Ministry of Science and Technology

Daniel Snook is a Community Psychology Ph.D. student studying the psychology of terrorism.  He earned a M.A. in psychology from University of North Florida. He earned a B.S. in psychology (cum laude) from the University of Florida Honors College.

His research framework is a mix of applied social and community psychology.  Currently, he is working with advisor Dr. John Horgan and the Violent Extremism Research Group (VERG).  He studies social cognition related to intergroup threat, violence, and terrorism and his current projects study Americans' judgments and decision-making related to terrorism and the role intergroup threat and motivated social cognition play in far-right terrorism.

Snook also conducts research on issues of measurement in the psychology of religion, the psychology of religious conversion, and the influence of crisis on identity transformation and intergroup violence.  He has experience working with more than 15 program evaluations and is currently evaluating countering violent extremism programs and homelessness interventions.

He teaches Research Design and Analysis, a junior-level research methods and statistics course in the psychology department.  He also has worked in the non-profit sector as a research analyst.  His expertise includes data analysis and reporting, including mass data management using Excel, SPSS, MPlus and MaxQDA.

Research and Published Studies:

Snook, D.W., Branum-Martin, L., & Horgan, J. G. [forthcoming 2019]. Zealous or Just Different? Comparing the Structure of Islamic Religiousness Between Convert and Non-convert Muslims. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality.

Arce, M.A., Snook, D.W., Joseph, H., Halmos, M., [forthcoming 2019]. Assessing a Culturally-Sensitive Domestic Violence Intervention for Latinx Survivors: Building an Effective Evaluation. American Journal of Community Psychology.

Snook, D.W., Kleinmann, S.M., White, G., & Horgan, J. G. (2018). Conversion Motifs Among Muslim Converts in the United States. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, In Press.

Snook, D.W., Williams, M. J., & Horgan, J. G. (2018). Issues in the Sociology and Psychology of Religious Conversion. Pastoral Psychology, 1-18.


Snook, D.W., Branum-Martin, L., & Horgan, J.G. [forthcoming 2019].  "Zealous or just different? Comparing the structure of Islamic religiousness between convert and non-convert Muslims".  Paper to be presented at the Annual Meeting for the Society for the Psychology of Religion and Spirituality (APA Division 36); Bowling Green, OH.

Snook, D.W. (2018). “Fear itself: America’s dysfunctional relationship with terrorism”.  Presented April 13, 2018, at TEDxGeorgiaStateU.  Atlanta, GA.

Snook, D.W. & Horgan, J. (2017). “Religious beliefs and practices among Muslim converts and non-converts: Starting points for understanding convert overrepresentation in violent extremism”. Paper presented at the Society for Terrorism Research 11th Annual International Conference; New York City, NY.

Horgan, J. & Snook, D.W. (2016). “Understanding American Muslim converts in the contexts of society and security”. Presentation at 2017 Minerva Annual Project Review.  Arlington, VA.

Horgan, J., Kleinmann, S., & Snook, D.W. (2016) “Understanding American Muslim converts in the contexts of society and security”.  Presentation at 2016 Minerva Meeting and Program Review.  Washington, DC.