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StatFest Back for 21st Year in 2021

1 May 2021 No Comment
Photo courtesy of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston shows Hadley Wickham, from RStudio, speaking at StatFest 2019.

Photo courtesy of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
Hadley Wickham, from RStudio, speaks at StatFest 2019.

    Finding people like yourself along the career path you desire can be intimidating during the first years in higher education, especially when the household names in those places do not seem to have paths that match yours. It is common to be unsure where your vague major fits into graduate programs or the job market. However, answers might be closer than you think.

    StatFest 2021 is a free conference over two half days aimed at encouraging BIPOC (Black, indigenous, people of color) undergraduates who have quantitative interests to pursue careers or graduate studies in the statistical and data sciences. StatFest is currently in its 21st year and will be held virtually for the second year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s event will take place September 18–19.

    During the conference, students will be inspired by a keynote address highlighting the speaker’s career trajectory and informed by engaging presentations and discussions that explore opportunities in statistics and data science across government, academia, industry, and the nonprofit sector. Students will also have an opportunity to engage in a candid Q&A with a graduate student panel that explores the life of a graduate student, navigating the application process, and the steps to thriving as an aspiring researcher. At the same time, professionals will come together to address issues related to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in statistics and data science. Additionally, StatFest will feature opportunities for attendees to network with other attendees and connect with institutions from academia, industry, and the nonprofit sector.

    StatFest is an ongoing initiative of the American Statistical Association through its Committee on Minorities in Statistics (CoMiS). The committee seeks to foster participation in statistics and data science by historically under-represented minorities and focuses much of its effort on two key programs: StatFest, a pathway program, and the Diversity Mentoring Program, an early-career success program.

    StatFest 2020 attendees appreciated the welcoming and informative environment; opportunity to hear people’s stories and experiences; and ability to connect with graduate program directors, professors, and graduate students from many campuses, based on feedback from the post-event survey.

    While the conference is free, registration is required. Visit the StatFest website for more information and to register.

    StatFest is made possible through the financial support of the ASA and several academic and industrial sponsors. If you have questions about StatFest, contact StatFest 2021 co-chairs Brittney Bailey or Therri Usher. If your organization is interested in supporting the event, email Adrian Coles, CoMiS chair.

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