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Celebrate Alumni

Celebrating our Alumni Tim Bell

We're thrilled to share that Tim Bell, Chair of the Arcady Hall Board of Trustees and Professor of Computer Science and Software Engineering at the University of Canterbury, was awarded a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (CNZM) in the New Year’s Honours list for his outstanding contributions to computer science education.


The recipient of the global Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education (ACM-SIGSCE) award for Outstanding Contribution to Computer Science Education in 2017, Tim has dedicated himself to inspiring students and shaping the future of computer science education.


His groundbreaking work in compression, co-inventing modern text retrieval and data compression techniques, has left an indelible mark on the field. His books, including Text Compression and Managing Gigabytes, alongside the influential Computer Science Unplugged project, have made computer science concepts accessible to learners of all ages around the world.


Tim's impact reaches far beyond New Zealand, influencing the introduction of computer science into school curriculums globally. From securing funding for workshops to creating innovative programs like CS-At-Home and CS-At-a-Distance during the COVID-19 pandemic, his dedication has transformed the landscape of computer science education.  Although teaching computer science is his job, Tim also describes it as his passion and has always enjoyed working with young people.  He was a Residential Assistant at Bishop Julius Hall (now Arcady Hall) from 1985 to 1987 and a member of the Hall’s board of Trustees since in 2005, helping to provide a home away from home for our residents.


Beyond academia, Tim is a multifaceted individual with a love for music, showcasing his talent as a keyboard player in bands and holds an Associate of Trinity College London Diploma in Pipe Organ performance.


Congratulations Tim, on this well-deserved recognition!

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