Melanie A. Sutton is currently a tenured Professor of Informatics at the University of West Florida and one of UWF's volunteer contributors to The Orange Grove, Florida's Digital Repository. Past administrative accomplishments include serving for 9 years as the Co-Director and Academic Advisor of the Certificate in Medical Informatics Program at UWF. From 2007-2009 she chaired the MPH CEPH Self-Study Committee at UWF that resulted in CEPH accreditation of UWF's online Master of Public Health program, a first for UWF and a distinction shared by just three other universities in the U.S.A. offering online MPH degrees at the time. She teaches courses in bioinformatics, health information systems, medical informatics, medical terminology, and computer/GIS applications in public health. Her research interests and publications span these areas, as well as computer vision, robotics, digital mammography, and online instruction and assessment.
In 2008 and 2009, respectively, Dr. Sutton received the U-Make A Difference and U-Care Awards from the UWF Excellence Matters Faculty and Staff Reward and Recognition Program. In 2007, she received an Appreciation Award from the Pensacola chapter of the American Society of Safety Engineers for helping to promote safety and health along the Gulf Coast. She received the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching and Advising Award in 2002 and the Outstanding Instructor of the Semester Award in 1998.
She most recently served as a Co-Principal Investigator on a $292,728 grant from Florida's Great Northwest (FGNW) for the project, Innovative New Programs for an Industry-Vested IT Workforce in Northwest Florida: Software Engineering Graduate Program, and as a Principal Investigator for a separate $10,000 FGNW-sponsored grant for the project, Innovative New Programs for an Industry-Vested IT Workforce in Northwest Florida: Health Sciences and Technology Training Retreats for High School Guidance Counselors and Academy Directors. In 1999-2003 she also served as the Principal Investigator of a $208,080 grant from The Whitaker Foundation for the project, Development and Assessment of Protocols for Efficient Utilization of Large-Scale Digital Mammography Databases.
While pursuing a Master's degree in Computer Science with the Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition Group at the University of South Florida (USF), she worked with Harris Space Systems in Rockledge, Florida, on the CORE project, a redesign of the Launch Processing System for the Space Shuttle. She subsequently received her Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering at USF in the area of computer vision and robotics under Dr. Kevin Bowyer and Dr. Louise Stark, with support from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, the National Science Foundation (Research Experiences for Undergraduates program), and a NASA Florida Space Grant Consortium graduate fellowship.