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The Hubbub

Keep up with the latest in South Big Data Innovation Hub news! 

 

The Hubbub! Blog showcases Hub projects, new partnerships, working group activities, news, event highlights, and other activities around the Hub; we also include guest blog posts from Hub members around the region.

 

DataUp Workshop
As part of the DataUp program, Old Dominion University held a workshop on Oct 25-26 to introduce shell, git, R, and the JupyterHub. More than 20 students and faculty joined to engage in this 2-day workshop.
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Precision medicine and understanding health disparities, innovation to power competitive manufacturing, technology for smarter communities, and addressing coastal hazards such as hurricanes are among the challenges facing the Southern United States. A $4 million award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) will help apply data science and engineering to address those challenges.
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Georgia Tech’s Office of the Executive Vice President for Research (EVPR) awarded the South Big Data Regional Innovation Hub (SBDH) the Outstanding Achievement in Research Program Development Award for 2019. The annual award is presented to a research team for efforts that create a new thought leadership platform that significantly expands Georgia Tech’s research portfolio.
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The South Hub created the DataUp program to enable researchers and educators to teach data science students and prepare them for future data-intensive and data-enabled environments.  On August 18, 35 learners packed the room, at the University of Puerto Rico- Rio Piedras (UPRRP), to participate in a hands-on workshop focused on data management and analysis for genomics research.  Students learned best practices for the organization of bioinformatics projects and data, use of command line utilities, use of command line tools to analyze sequence quality and perform variant calling, and connecting to and using cloud computing.   This workshop, taught in English and Spanish, created such a buzz that a waitlist was created.  The waitlist included 13 individuals!
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In the week of July 29-Aug 2, 2019, more than 50 faculty and students from more 21 institutions participated in two R bootcamps at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC). The iCompBio REU is supported by NSF Award 1852042, REU Site: ICompBio – Engaging Undergraduates in Interdisciplinary Computing for Biological Research. The first bootcamp on data wrangling using R was taught by Hong Qin, a computational biologist at UTC. Materials for this R Data Wrangling bootcamp is available at a public GitHub repository https://tinyurl.com/UTC-R-camps2019. The second bootcamp, Electronic Health Records, was taught by Elvena Fong and Zhuqi Miao from the Center for Health Systems Innovation at the Oklahoma State University.
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The South Big Data Hub’s Program to Empower Partnerships with Industry (PEPI) pairs early-career faculty and researchers throughout the South with Industry Partners and support their travel to make collaboration possible.
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The South Big Data Hub Roundtable held on January 11 in Chapel Hill, NC, provided an open discussion forum with a focus on Translational Data Analytics for Environmental Health.
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The South Big Data Hub is one of four regional big data hub partners awarded a $1.8 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for the initial development of a data storage network over the next two years. A collaborative team will combine their expertise, facilities, and research challenges to develop the Open Storage Network (OSN). The OSN will enable academic researchers across the nation to work with and share their data more efficiently than ever before, according to the NSF announcement. 
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Data Education--Inclusivity is the Word
As organizational and societal decisions become more data-driven academic institutions, industry, and government officials continuously identify data literacy as an important skillset for individuals currently in and entering the workforce.  Unfortunately, a dearth of qualified data literate employees exists producing a need for effective data science education and training for undergraduates.  The National Academies of Sciences (NAS) formed a study committee to consider the core principles and skills undergraduates should learn and the pedagogical issues that must be addressed to build effective data science education programs.
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Hub Group
Keeping Data Science Broad in-person workshop explored the Data Divide by convening stakeholders from teaching institutions, community colleges, tribal colleges, and minority-serving institutions to discuss challenges related to capacity building and capability. Specific issues discussed included access to data, critical thinking, designing curriculum and assessment, data literacy, diversity, ethics, resources and staffing, building collaborations, and the pipeline to higher education from K-12. Recent education-enabling projects were showcased at the event.
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