News

8/13/2020

An alumnus of the University of Kentucky’s doctoral program in statistics recently received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

SUNY Oswego mathematics professor Ampalavanar Nanthakumar was recognized for his skills as an educator, dedication to students and contributions to the field of statistics.

“Professor Nanthakumar has excellent communication skills with an impeccable teaching record at SUNY Oswego,” wrote his nominator, Kamal I. Mohamed, a biology professor and director of Rice Creek Field Station. “As an instructor he can motivate, inspire, encourage and identify with students. Students in his classes described him as caring, fair and encouraging, enthusiastic and well prepared.”

Nanthakumar also has supervised more than 50 student capstone projects, independent study projects, Scholarly and Creative Activity Committee Challenge

6/3/2020

The College of Arts and Sciences is committed to learning and working environments that are diverse, inclusive, and equitable for students, staff, and faculty.

We stand in solidarity with those working to confront systemic racial injustice in our communities and in the United States. We recognize the disproportionate burden of racism and other forms of violence on many within our A&S community during this time. We affirm our support of faculty, students, staff, and alumni in standing against all forms of racism, discrimination, and bias.

During this time of pandemic and continued racism and violence that especially impact marginalized communities of color, we recognize the disproportionate impact on Black and African-American people. In the context of the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and here in Kentucky, Breonna Taylor and David McAtee, we affirm that

3/26/2020
Statistics Department named for alumnus, generous donor

By Jay Blanton

University of Kentucky faculty member Connie Wood accepted a collect call in 1989 from a student a world away who was in need of a connection and a path forward.

For Bing Zhang, the willingness of a director of graduate studies to accept that phone call and offer help in a time of need has made all the difference in a life’s work and, now, what has been a lifetime of giving back.

Flash forward more than 30 years.

This February, President Eli Capilouto recommended and the UK Board of Trustees accepted a $6.35 million pledge Zhang is making to the University’s Department of Statistics, where he received his doctorate 26 years ago. The board also approved naming the Department the Dr. Bing Zhang Department of Statistics at the University of Kentucky. UK’s

3/25/2020
This Living Learning Program gives freshmen a mentored head start on the way to majoring in the sciences and mathematics

By Richard LeComte

Started in 2015, the STEMCats Living Learning Program has helped students majoring within the many and varied areas of the sciences or mathematics find their way to success at UK. And STEMCats peer mentors are a big part of that effort. 

“I have a group chat with my mentees about how things are going,” said Keanu Exum, a STEMCats peer mentor majoring in biology and neuroscience. “I want to make myself known to my mentees — that I am a resource for them.” 

Getting students situated in STEMCats is having a positive effect on the academic careers of the participants, says a study conducted by Carol D. Hanley of International Programs in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. STEMCats is a program

2/21/2020
A photo portrait of Bing Zhang

By Jay Blanton

University of Kentucky faculty member Connie Wood accepted a collect call in 1989 from a student a world away who was in need of a connection and a path forward.

For Bing Zhang, the willingness of a director of Graduate Studies to accept that phone call and offer help in a time of need has made all the difference in a life’s work and, now, what has been a lifetime of giving back.

Flash forward more than 30 years.

Today, President Eli Capilouto is recommending that the UK Board of Trustees accept a $6.35 million pledge Zhang is making to the university’s Department of Statistics, where he received his doctorate a generation ago. Capilouto also is recommending that the board approve naming the department the Dr. Bing Zhang Department of

7/16/2019

By  Lindsey Piercy

Life is a balancing act, and no one understands that more than Eric Rannenberg. As a man with many titles — devoted husband, dedicated father and former Marine turned working professional — time is a valuable resource.

"Time management is critical," he said.

At just 18 years old, the Bowling Green, Kentucky, native hit the ground running. He signed on the dotted line and, with great pride, enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve after completing high school.

In 1999, Rannenberg earned his bachelor’s degree in business management from Eastern Kentucky University. Following graduation, he served for 10 years on active duty as a pilot in the Marines and deployed twice overseas.

In 2009, Rannenberg separated from active service, joined the Maryland Air National Guard and decided to further his education. In the midst of working and

6/27/2019

By Madison Dyment and Jenny Wells

The University of Kentucky boasts an impressive host of faculty and can now add a third Fellow of the American Statistical Association (ASA) and an Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS) Fellow to its ranks.

UK statistics Professor Xiangrong Yin will join his department colleagues, Arnold Stromberg and Richard Kryscio, as Fellows of the ASA — the world’s largest community of statisticians and the second-oldest, continuously operating professional association in the country. 

Yin has contributed to UK since 2014 by teaching mainly graduate level courses in mathematical statistics, research in statistics and data science using elements of computer science. Previously, he worked at the University of Georgia after his graduation in 2000.

“In 2014, UK was recruiting senior faculty members, and I was lucky and got the

5/31/2019

By Lori Adams

The University of Kentucky has released its Dean's List for the spring 2019 semester. A total of 6,562 students were recognized for their outstanding academic performance. 

To make a Dean’s List in one of the UK colleges, a student must earn a grade-point average of 3.6 or higher and must have earned 12 credits or more in that semester, excluding credits earned in pass-fail classes. Some UK colleges require a 3.5 GPA to make the Dean’s List.

The full Dean's List can be accessed by visiting: www.uky.edu/PR/News/DeansList/.

4/20/2019

The opioid epidemic has taken hundreds of thousands of lives and devastated millions more. This problem has engaged the passion, knowledge and persistence of researchers and health care providers who work on a daily basis to help people with opioid use disorder. 

In the largest grant ever awarded to the University of Kentucky, researchers from 

4/19/2019

By Kristi Willett

 

In the largest grant ever awarded to the University of Kentucky, researchers from UK's Center on Drug and Alcohol Research (CDAR) and across campus — in partnership with the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services and the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet (JPSC) — will lead a project as part of the HEALing Communities study.

The four-year, more than $87 million study has an ambitious but profoundly important goal: reducing opioid overdose deaths by 40 percent in 16 counties that represent more than a third of

4/16/2019

By Jenny Wells

This summer, the University of Kentucky Dr. Bing Zhang Department of Statistics will host its first Statistical Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) workshop for students and their faculty mentors.

This all expense-paid program will take place June 3-5 at General Butler State Park in Carrollton, Kentucky. The event will offer a real data analytics workshop and information on careers and graduate school opportunities in the areas of data science, analytics and statistics/biostatistics.

“With funding from the National Science Foundation and the American Statistical Association, we’re excited to host the first ever SURE workshop, where undergraduates can learn about statistical programming and options for careers in statistics," said Arnold Stromberg, chair of UK Statistics. "We especially

10/18/2018

By Lindsey Piercy

The University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences will induct six new members into the A&S Hall of Fame on Friday, Oct. 19. 

For more about each honoree, see their brief biographies below.

Alumni inductees:

Jennifer L. Garr, topical studies, bachelor's degree, 1986

Garr is a native of Louisville, Kentucky. Early in her sophomore year at UK, she chose the path of topical studies with an emphasis in art therapy. Garr’s activities ranged from a semester as staff artist for the Kentucky Kernel to public relations director for the UK Student Center Board. Garr has worked at some of the top advertising companies and management agencies, including Brown & Williamson International, Leo Burnett, J. Walter Thompson, Publicis,

8/24/2018

By Nick Harling

The University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences has named the first recipients of its Inclusion Fellows program, an initiative for faculty interested in actively orchestrating and advancing efforts to build a more inclusive campus.

Fellows can develop and implement scholarly, community-building, pedagogical, mentoring and networking events, initiatives or programming. The fellowship period serves as a professional development opportunity for the fellows, as it enables them to enhance their responsibilities and bring forth new ideas and measures that will positively affect students.

“The overall goal of the Inclusion Fellows Program is to draw on and support faculty to create sustainable change to enhance inclusivity within the college,” Cristina Alcalde, associate dean of inclusion and internationalization, said. “Over the

5/24/2018

By Jennifer T. Allen

Former Marine and currently active in the Air National Guard, Eric Rannenberg just received his master’s degree as part of the first cohort of UK's new Master of Applied Statistics online professional graduate program.

Eric Rannenberg was coming out of a math course on the University of Kentucky campus when he saw a flier that completely changed his academic plan. The flier, promoting the UK College of Arts and Sciences’ online Master of Applied Statistics, led Rannenberg to apply to the program and begin his studies that semester.

“I dropped all of my other classes except one, joined the statistics program three weeks late and worked hard to get caught up,” he said.

This May, two years later, he walked across the

5/18/2018

By Mallory Powell

 

High school students can get an expert introduction to statistics and related careers at a free three-day workshop June 4 through June 6. The "Statistics Facts and Snacks" program, hosted by the University of Kentucky Applied Statistics Lab and the Center for Clinical and Translational Science, will discuss what a statistician does, explore requirements to pursue higher education in statistics, and teach introductory statistical programming techniques. The workshop is geared towards any high school grade level and no statistics or computer science experience is required. 

Sessions will meet from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the UK Multidisciplinary Sciences Building, room 333. 

Parents/guardians can register their students at https://stat.as.uky.edu/asl-events.

Please contact 

3/12/2018

By Jenny Wells

Melissa Pittard, a senior lecturer in the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Statistics, has received an award from the American Statistical Association. The Best Speed Session Award, which was given out as part of the 2017 Joint Statistical Meeting Conference, was given to Pittard for her presentation on statistics education. More than 480 presenters participated in the speed sessions.

"I am quite honored to win the award and was rather surprised," said Pittard, who received her doctoral degree from UK in 1999. "The other presentations were excellent. I usually just joke that I am really good at talking fast. 

”The topic of my presentation was using video presentations to assess student learning in large lectures. Students

3/8/2018

by Susan Odom

Kentucky’s middle school girls and their parents/guardians are invited to join us for the second annual Expanding Your Horizons Conference at the University of Kentucky campus on Saturday, April 21, 2018.  This day of hands-on workshops will give middle school girls the chance to meet STEM role models and get exposure to opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math. This is the second iteration of the conference, which is organized by members of the Colleges of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, the College of Arts & Sciences, and the College of Engineering.

Co-organizers, including Ellen Crocker (Forestry and Natural Resources) and Carmen Agouridis (Biosystems & Ag Engineering), joined forces to bring Expanding Your Horizons back to UK for a second time. The EYH team is back with more person – in particular, woman! – power than

11/9/2017

By Kristie Colon

L to R: James Collard, Katherine Thompson, Penni Black, Madeline Krentz Gober

New findings from University of Kentucky faculty published in Scientific Reports reveals a novel cell signaling interaction that may prevent a key step in lung cancer progression.

Kentucky continues to lead the nation in incidence and death rates from lung cancer, and the UK College of Pharmacy is committed to reducing these numbers.

Lung cancers are often diagnosed in later stages, with very few treatment options available. Often patients develop a resistance to a targeted therapy, resulting in a need for a variety of therapies that can be administered in stages or coupled

7/27/2017

By Gail Hairston

Derek Young, University of Kentucky College of Arts & Sciences assistant professor of statistics, recently published his new book, “Handbook of Regression Methods,” which concisely covers numerous traditional, contemporary and nonstandard regression methods. 

The handbook provides a broad overview of regression models, diagnostic procedures and inference procedures, with emphasis on how regression methods are applied. The organization of the handbook benefits both practitioners and researchers, who seek either to obtain a quick understanding of regression methods for specialized problems or to expand their own breadth of knowledge of regression topics.

“Handbook of Regression Methods” covers classic material about simple linear regression and multiple linear regression, including assumptions, effective visualizations and inference

7/24/2017

Since inception the Keeneland Concours d'Elegance has benefited the Kentucky Children's Hospital.

And the Department of Statistics in the UK College of Arts and Sciences once again assisted in scoring the results.  The UK graduate students and professors kept real-time track of winners at last Saturday’s car show (7/15).

Associate professor of statistics Connie Wood (pictured below; left) initiated the service project between UK and the car show four years ago.  "I was talking with one of the core members and he was showing me what they were doing and I said, 'This is something we could help with.' We are statisticians. That's what we do," Wood said. "And it is a marvelous experience for our students to actually get experience collecting data, entering data, analyzing data and to actually see why you have to clean data

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