Monthly Archives: March 2015

DataFest 2015 Recap

What an amazing weekend! Things kicked off on Friday night with a beautiful sunset visible from the 16th floor of Lederle. 79 students from across all Five Colleges participated in this year’s event, and 16 teams made presentations on Sunday afternoon.

Datafest 2015 Participants
photo by Andy Anderson

Two parallel sessions of eight presentations were given, each presided over by a three-judge panel. In the end, the following prizes were awarded by the judges:

  • Best In Show: 2β||!2β (Smith College): Galen Long, Sara Stoudt, Zhenzhen Tan, Aiyi Zhang, Vega Zhang
  • Best Pitch: 95% Confident (Amherst College): Paul Gramieri, Caleb Ki, Levi Lee, Thomas Matthew, and Albert Yu
  • Best Understated Insight: Team (UMass): Bob Ambrose, Jen Coppola, Brooke Herzog, Tom Jeon, Eugene Siegel
  • Best Business Value: Jo-Jo ToAlTrev (Amherst College): Johannes Ferstad, Jon Jordan, Thomas Savage, Trevor Smith, Alexander Titelbaum
  • Best Use of External Data: Women in Black (Amherst College): Muling Si, Jenny Xiao, Qi Xie, Jingwen Zhang
  • Most Engaging Presentation: The Amazing Technicolor Dream Team (UMass): Brad Beady, Michael Bjorge, Ezra Dantowitz, Jason Gurney

Our judges were effusive in their praise for all the hard work and enthusiasm put into their presentations. They were:

  • Becky Sweger, data analyst for the federal government
  • R. Jordan Crouser, Computing and Analytics Group, MIT Lincoln Laboratory
  • Marc Maier, Assistant VP and Data Scientist, MM Data Labs
  • Wendy Wang, Assistant Professor of Statistics, Williams College
  • Person A, the data provider
  • Person B, the data provider

Congratulations to all who participated!! Special thanks go to our sponsors — especially MassMutual — and to the many members of GRiD who selflessly devoted their weekend to helping out!

Check out #datafest on Twitter for more pictures and info.

Only 363 days until next year’s DataFest…