September 26, 2014 – This fall, Fort Valley State University’s Mathematics and Computer Science Department will be presenting new research, internship and mentoring opportunities for students and faculty pursuing minors in Applied Statistics. The new program was launched this fall thanks to funds from a $393,684 National Science Fund Grant.
Dr. Dawit Aberra, chair of the university’s math and computer science department, and assistant professors of mathematics Dr. Haixan Wang and Dr. Shadreck Chitsonga, were co-principal investigators for the grant projects entitled, “Targeted Infusion Project: Developing a Minor Program in Applied Statistics within the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at FVSU.”
“The overall aim of this new project is to establish a sustainable minor program in Applied Statistics within the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science,” Aberrasaid. “Faculty and students majoring in a STEM discipline or other program will benefit from the new minor program in Applied Statistics.”
Aberra said the project supports an academic year of research mentorship followed by summer research experiences or internships for FVSU students who are planning to pursue a minor in Applied Statistics. Each year, up to four faculty and eight students will participate in this research component of the program.
To apply for the program, interested faculty members and students are asked to submit the following:
- Faculty research mentors are asked to submit their names, biographies, and contact addresses, along with the title, abstract and plan for the research they are conducting.
- Students working with faculty members are asked to submit a short biography and a statement about whether the students are planning to pursue a minor in the statistics track.
Priority funding will be provided to faculty with students who are registered for or completed the “Applied Regression Analysis” or “Biostatistics” courses at FVSU. Faculty and students should design studies in their discipline, work with data using statistical software, analyze the data, and effectively communicate their findings to their audience in other disciplines. The emphasis will be on the application of statistics in the applicants’ field of study and research.
Co-principal investigator Chitsonga believes the new minor will be a good offering for mathematics majors.
“The establishment of a minor in statistics is a great addition to the current programs we offer here at FVSU,” Chitsonga said. “A minor in statistics will help our students develop statistical knowledge and skills that are vital in today’s data-driven society. The research component of the project will encourage collaboration among faculty and students.”
According to Aberra, there will be several benefits for participants.
“Faculty research mentors (with two students) who complete successfully will be compensated by the end of the summer for up to $1,280.00 per year,” Aberra said. “Each student will receive a stipend of up to $1,200.00 per year for successfully completing their project, or as a support for their summer internship.”
An initial application deadline has been set for October 31, 2014.
Christina D. Milton,writer/Social Media Specialist
Fort Valley State University
Office of Marketing and Communications