(BOWIE, Md.) – Ten Bowie State University student researchers, matched with faculty mentors, spent the summer using data science to analyze some of society’s most pressing issues, like modeling COVID-19 cases by socio-economic factors, as part of the Data Science & Analytics Summer Undergraduate Research Institute. View the first-ever BSU Data Science & Analytics Virtual Research Symposium from July 28.

Divided into five interdisciplinary teams, the students and faculty worked virtually over the past nine weeks to uncover patterns and trends in large datasets. The Bowie State Data Science & Analytics Initiative hosted the summer research experience, led by Professor LaTanya Brown-Robertson in the Department of Accounting, Finance & Economics, and funded by a nearly $400,000 National Science Foundation grant. The experience with data science research is paying off for BSU students.

“Students from last year’s program are now working and interning with PwC, American Airlines, Brookings Institute and American Chemical Society as Data Analysts,” said Dr. Brown-Robertson. “Our student researchers from this year already has an offer from ESPN in the Analytics division.”

For senior biology major Jasmin Perkins, the summer research institute taught her the skills to achieve her goal of becoming a genetic researcher.

“This program has given me many necessary tools in order for me to take my career to the next level. It introduced us to many different machine learning tools, such as Tablaeu and WEKA, to help us better understand data science,” Perkins said. “I am now looking forward to seeing the future participants and how much this program positively affects their future, like it has done for me.”

Here are the teams and their projects:

  • Uncovering Ethnic Disparities in Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Infections
    Faculty Mentor: Dr. Tyesha Burks
    Student: Jasmin Perkins 
  • Using Data to Understand the Impact of COVID-19 on the Creation and Destruction of the Small and Medium Enterprises in the United States
    Faculty Mentors: Dr. Falih Alsaaty, Dr. Kavita Kapur and Dr. Augustin Ntembe
    Students: Cyndi Gilliam and Christopher Moss 
  • Stock Price Reaction to the Announcement of Mergers and Acquisitions
    Faculty Mentors: Dr. Tibebe Assefa, Dr. Sunando Sengupta and Dr. Satina Williams
    Students: Noel Knott, Joekorvaya Sallia and Bobby Stanley  
  • Linkage Among Industries and Service Sectors Within Prince George’s County and Their Contribution to its Economic Growth
    Faculty Mentor: Dr. Elkanah Faux
    Student: Ariel Glove
  • Modeling of Communities’ COVID-19 Cases by Demographic and Economic Indicators
    Faculty Mentors: Dr. LaTanya Brown-Robertson, Dr. Nega LaKew and Dr. Azene Zenebe  
    Students: Justan McNair-Sneed, Ramar White and Kirk Williams