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NC State Hosts EDGE 2010

1 August 2010 No Comment
Kimberly Weems
    From left: Marcia Gumpertz, NC State interim vice provost for diversity and inclusion and statistics professor; Jacqueline Hughes-Oliver, NC State statistics professor; and Sharon Lubkin, NC State mathematics professor

    From left: Marcia Gumpertz, NC State interim vice provost for diversity and inclusion and statistics professor; Jacqueline Hughes-Oliver, NC State statistics professor; and Sharon Lubkin, NC State mathematics professor

    The twelfth Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education (EDGE) Program was hosted by North Carolina State University in June. Cofounded by Sylvia Bozeman of Spelman College and Rhonda Hughes of Bryn Mawr College, EDGE is an intensive four-week program designed to equip female college graduates with the tools they need to successfully complete graduate programs in the mathematical and statistical sciences. NC State is the first research I institution to host EDGE.

    Fourteen women participated in EDGE 2010 and received instruction in core areas, such as linear algebra and analysis. In addition, they were exposed to research and valuable role models through seminars, panel discussions, and mini-courses.

    A typical EDGE day consisted of lectures in the morning, followed by a problem session led by graduate student mentors and lecture or panel discussion in the afternoon.

    Sally Morton, past president of the ASA and chair of the department of biostatistics at the University of Pittsburgh, gave an invited lecture, titled “You and the American Statistical Association,” in which she stressed the importance of becoming involved in a professional society and discussed her career as an applied statistician.

    Additionally, Carlos Castillo-Chavez, regents professor, and Joaquin Bustoz Jr., professor of mathematical biology at Arizona State University, taught a two-day mini-course on epidemiological models. The students also learned about careers and work-life balance during a panel discussion with women faculty and industry professionals. At a dinner with EDGE students and alumnae, ASA President Sastry Pantula gave useful advice about networking, National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research and Postdoctoral Fellowships, and the importance of helping others as they progress in their careers.

    Funded by NSF, EDGE establishes a strong mentoring and support network that continues throughout the students’ graduate studies and beyond. More than 30 EDGE participants have received doctoral degrees.

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