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Fall 2019


Congratulations Scott Zeger & Valerie Culotta!

Professor Jeff Leek is innovating an amazing new program at the interface of data science and social justice—Chromebook CBDS+.  CBDS+ builds on massive open online courses to provide additional support to learners from underprivileged communities. It then trains and mentors cohorts of economically disadvantaged students to a level that they can apprentice in, and ultimately advance into, data science careers. The program currently is piloting in Baltimore: the goal is to scale it nationwide. We could not be more excited to demonstrate the immediate role of Biostatistics in public health through these efforts! Learn More


Our faculty and students continue to be recognized for their amazing achievements in education and research. In May, Leah Jager was honored with the Public Health Studies Golden Apple Award—the highest award for excellence given for teaching in the Public Health Studies program on the undergraduate campus. Elizabeth Colantuoni, Nilanjan Chatterjee, Abhi Datta, and Martin Lindquist all have received new grant awards as Principal Investigator—to develop improved statistical methods, respectively, to: address delirium in older adults (NIH); perform polygenic risk analysis (NIH); pursue highly multivariate geostatistical analysis (NSF); and create neuroimaging-based biomarkers of pain—in leadership of a national consortium (NIH). A paper co-authored by Betsy Ogburn was named among the American Journal of Epidemiology’s best of the year. Students Haoyu Zhang and Prosenjit Kundu were recognized with national student paper awards—respectively, by the Statistical Genetics and Genomics, and the Epidemiology, Sections of the American Statistical Association. We are tremendously proud of all our community does to advance scholarship in biostatistics and public health!

Extra! Extra!

Neuroconductor: an R platform for medical imaging analysis

Ciprian Crainiceanu, Brian Caffo, John Muschelli, and Adrian Gherman, together with others, have created and deployed the “Neuroconductor” R platform. Analogous to “Bioconductor,” Neuroconductor is a software repository and educational resource that aims to facilitate and promote high quality, reproducible data processing and analysis in the neuroscience field. Please check it out—you’ll appreciate the capabilities and scope of this resource our faculty have produced! The keynote article for Neuroconductor appeared in the journal Biostatistics. Check out this wonderful compendium in the Biostatistics journal.

Maintaining Tradition

Biostatistics Annual Chili Party 2019

Big Data on the Brain

On Saturday, September 21st, Department Chair, Karen Bandeen-Roche hosted the Department’s Annual Chili Party at her residence, continuing the 30-year tradition of this event. As per tradition, there were also several non-chili dishes contributed by other students, postdocs and faculty to make the potluck-style event a well-rounded culinary affair.

Competition was stiff this year with the PhD students winning in every category! Winners were chosen by a panel of student and faculty judges: Ben Ackerman, Althena Chen and Sophie Berube won for Best vegetarian Chili and student duo, Jacob Fiksel and Lamar Hunt, won Best Meat Chili. The winners received the coveted trophies for their respective categories; the trophies will be on display in their offices until next year’s showdown.

Faculty Promotions

  •  Elizabeth Colantuoni, Senior Scientist
  • John McGready, Senior Scientist
  • Margaret Taub, Associate Scientist
  • Vadim Zipunnikov, Associate Professor


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