Farhana Ashraf


Ph.D. in Computer Science, May 2013

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)

Thesis: Survival Guide for Energy-constrained Devices in Dense Wireless Networks.

Advisor: Prof. Robin Kravets


B.Sc. in Computer Science and Engineering, Nov 2006

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET)

Placed 1st in the class of 124 students



Graduate Research Assistant, Advisor: Prof. Robin Kravets, Fall 2007 - Present

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), Urbana, IL

  • Designed Neighborhood-based Power Management (NPM), an asynchronous MAC protocol to support energy-efficient coodination between the senders and the receivers in a duty-cycled network with diverse traffic.

  • Designed Jam-Buster, an energy-efficient jam-resistant system to defend against reactive jammers in wireless sensor networks by exploiting the jammer's vulnerabilities to locate them and to exhaust their limited energy resources.

  • Designed Opportunistic Scan (opp-Scan), a low-overhead cooperative scanning mode for devices in dense wireless networks to opportunistically discover their nearby access points to enable successful communication despite the poor channel quality due to high density.

Graduate Researcher, Advisor: Prof. Nitin Vaidya, Summer 2010

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), Urbana, IL

  • Designed Any-MAC, a generic plug-in to enable MAC-layer anycast in existing asynchronous duty-cycled MAC protocols to opportunistically improve end-to-end latency by exploiting the inherent path redundancy in dense wireless networks.

Research Intern, Advisor: Dr. Himanshu Khurana, Summer 2007

National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), Urbana, IL

  • Contributed to the development of a secure mail-proxy implementing Identity based Message Key Distribution (IB-MKD) and Policy Based Encryption System (PBES) to enable traditional mail clients to safely share mail content among multiple recipients.

Undergraduate Researcher, Advisor: Prof. Mostafa Akbar, Nov 2005 - Nov 2006

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), Bangladesh

  • Experimented with Reliable Service Level Agreement (R-SLA) based admission controller to determine the optimal number of alternate paths on which to pre-reserve resources in order to improve reliability of communication in Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) networks.


Graduate Teaching Assistant

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL

Courses: CS 438 - Communication Networks and CS 241 - Systems Programming

  •  Led two 1-hour discussion sections each week, each section having 25 students.
  • Designed and graded C programming assignments, homeworks and exam questions, entire class having around 180 - 200 students.
  • Held two hours of office hours each week to help the students with their course materials, homeworks and programming assignments.


Programming: C / C++, Java, nesC, C#, Shell Scripting, Perl, 80x86 Assembly.

Web and Database Technologies: HTML, PHP, JSP, MySQL, PL / SQL, Oracle.

Simulation Tools & Modeling Languages: matlab, ns-2, UML.

Operating Systems: Linux, Windows, TinyOS.


Academic Excellence Awards

  • Gold medal - for the highest CGPS among all departments, BUET, 2006.
  • Gold medal - for the highest CGPA in CSE Department, BUET, 2006.
  • Academic Excellence - for the highest CGPA, Women's Hall, BUET, 2006.
  • Dean's List - for every year during undergraduate study.
  • University Merit Scholarship - for enery semester during undergraduate study.

Teaching Excellence Award

  • Outstanding Teaching Assistant - for Spring 2012 from CS Department, UIUC.

Programming Contest Awards

  • 7th position in IT Festival 2005, organized by Dhaka University, Bangladesh
  • 5th position and Best Female Team in National Computer Programming Contest (NCPC) Bangladesh 2004
  • 16th position and Best Female Team in ACM ICPC Asia regional 2004
  • 10th position and Best Female Team in ACM ICPC Asia regional 2003
  • 12th position in ACM ICPC Asia regional 2001

Conference Travel Grants

  • MASS Student Travel Grants - 2012, 2010
  • SECON Student Travel Award - 2011
  • Mobicom Student Research Competition Travel Awards - 2010, 2009
  • N2Women Travel Grants - SECON 2011, and N2Women workshop 2012, 2010
  • UIUC CS Department Conference Travel Grant - Fall 2010


Conference Papers

  • Farhana Ashraf, Yih-Chun Hu, and Robin Kravets, "Bankrupting the jammer in WSN", MASS 2012
  • Farhana Ashraf, Nitin H. Vaidya, and Robin Kravets, "Any-MAC: Extending any asynchronous MAC with anycast to improve delay in WSN", SECON 2011.
  • Farhana Ashraf, Riccardo Crepaldi, and Robin Kravets, "Know Your Neighborhood: A Strategy for Energy-efficient Communication", MASS 2010.
  • Farhana Ashraf, Riccardo Crepaldi, and Robin Kravets, "Synchronization vs. Signaling: Energy-Efficient Coordination in WSN", WIMESH 2010.
  • Rakesh Bobba, Himanshu Khurana, Musab AlTurki, and Farhana Ashraf, "PBES: a policy based encryption system with application to data sharing in the power grid", ASIACCS 2009.

Posters and Demo

  • Farhana Ashraf, Yih-Chun Hu, and Robin Kravets, "Demo: Bankrupting the jammer", MobiSys 2011.
  • Farhana Ashraf, Nitin H. Vaidya, and Robin Kravets, "Poster: Exploiting Routing Redundancy using MAC layer Anycast to Improve Delay in WSN", Mobicom 2010.
  • Farhana Ashraf, Riccardo Crepaldi, and Robin Kravets, "Poster: Neighborhood-based Power Management", Mobicom 2009.

Other Projects

Distributed Systems

  • Developed a collaborative recommender system for optimized power usage in a smart environment.
  • Developed an adaptive rate control system for broadcasting emergency messages in vehicular adhoc networks.

 Software Engineering and other areas

  • Developed an attribute-based secure file sharing system in C++ adopting policy-based encryption for access control mechanism and security enforcement.
  • Developed an online order management system using Oracle, J2EE, Jakarta Strust Framework, JSP, and Apache Tomcast Server.
  • Implemented a ticker-based information display system for the Dhaka Stock Exchange.


Student Program Committee, ACM S3 Workshop 2011

  • Organized and moderated session: ACM S3 Startup challenge
  • Arranged a talk titled: "A Brief Overview of Raising Start-up Capital" by Gian Brown, Vice President for Strategic Transactions at Science Applications International Corporation (NYSE: SAIC), Las Vegas, NV

Networking Networking Women (N2Women) Student Fellowship, SECON 2011

Mentor: Prof. Lili Qiu, University of Texas at Austion, TX

  • Organized N2Women lunch meeting for 20 participants
  • Arranged a talk titled: "10 pieces of advice I wish my PhD advisor had given me" by Prof. Jim Kurose, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA

TA mentor, CS department,UIUC, Urbana, IL, Spring 2012

  • Volunteered as a mentor for two new TAs
  • Monitored the new TAs perform their duties, and provided constructive feedback to improve their teaching and grading skills.