Each year, just 13 undergraduates are recognized with the Distinguished Anteater Award, and for 2018-19, one of them is Raj Parekh, a student of UCI’s new data science program. Parekh is majoring not only in data science (through the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences), but also in quantitative economics (School of Social Sciences) and mathematics (School of Physical Sciences). In addition to being one of the few students in the history of UCI who has triple majored with majors spanning three different schools, Parekh is also pursuing a minor in innovation and entrepreneurship in the Paul Merage School of Business and was recently admitted into the Economics Honors program.
The Center for Statistics and Applications in Forensic Evidence (CSAFE), funded by the National Institute of Standards Technology (NIST) and codirected by Chancellor’s Professor of Statistics Hal Stern, was recently recognized by the American Statistical Association. At the ASA Awards Celebration and Editor Appreciation Event, held on July 29, CSAFE and NIST won the award for Statistical Partnerships Among Academe, Industry and Government. Established in 2002, the SPAIG Award recognizes outstanding partnerships between academe, industry and government organizations, resulting in significant contributions to the statistical field with applications to real-world problems.
Statistics Ph.D. candidate Maricela Cruz won the Latino Excellence Award for Information and Computer Sciences (ICS). Cruz received the award at the inaugural Latino Excellence and Achievement Dinner (LEAD) held on April 5, 2018. The event celebrated research excellence and achievements across all schools on the UCI campus and recognized key leaders, graduate students, faculty and staff who encourage success in the Latino community at UCI and in Orange County.
While previously working on studies related to aging populations and patients with kidney disease, Statistics Professor Bin Nan came across a set of emerging issues that could not be resolved using standard methods. So, he decided to explore new methods, becoming the Principal Investigator on a grant titled “Cutting Edge Survival Methods for Epidemiological Data.” The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently awarded Nan and his co-investigators — University of Michigan Professors Yi Li and Siobán Harlow — $1.2 million to develop the methods over the next four years.
Statistics Ph.D. student Andrew Holbrook received the UCI MIND award for his exceptional work in theoretical mathematics, probability, statistics, and neuroscience and aging.
7 fields of advanced study place in top 10 among public universities on annual list.
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UCI’s research community gained a new ally with the hiring of a full-time director for the Center for Statistical Consulting. Dr. Joni Ricks-Oddie, who stepped into the new role in February, will also serve as head of the Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Research Design (BERD) unit within the Institute for Clinical and Translational Sciences (ICTS). By managing both the consulting center and BERD unit, Ricks-Oddie plans to streamline processes and improve efficiency so the two groups operate in synch with one another and become a “one-stop shop” for the UCI community and affiliated organizations.
Statistics Professor Babak Shahbaba has been awarded a $1.7 million National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant that could have far-reaching implications for future efforts to address memory impairment. The research involves electrophysiological experiments in rats to study how a brain structure — the hippocampus — supports our ability to remember the daily events of our life. Furthermore, the research should lead to new methodologies for handling huge amounts of complex data. The five-year grant, “Scalable Bayesian Stochastic Process Models for Neural Data Analysis,” is a multidisciplinary collaboration between Shahbaba and fellow Statistics Professor Hernando Ombao and Associate Professor of Neurobiology and Behavior Norbert Fortin.