Welcome from the chair

Joe HoganDear Colleagues,

The School of Public Health has launched the NextGen Scholars Program in Biostatistics. The program is designed to shape the next generation of scholars and professionals in biostatistics by providing full financial support for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities to pursue a Master’s degree in Biostatistics at Brown.

This new initiative builds on the MPH’s Health Equity Scholars Program, reflecting the School’s commitment to expanding the diversity of students in our own graduate programs, and in the fields of data science and biostatistics more broadly.

Data science is seeing explosive growth in public health, medicine, and biological sciences. Electronic health records, diagnostic images, epidemic modeling and surveillance, genomics, and molecular medicine – all of these areas and many others demand cutting edge tools for modeling, prediction, machine learning, and visualization.

The Biostatistics Master’s program at Brown prepares students for multiple career options, including doctoral-level study in biostatistics and professional data science careers in government, nonprofits, or the private sector. We want our graduates to be tomorrow’s leaders in health data science.

Many leading scholars and professionals in biostatistics started out studying math, statistics, computer science, engineering, or similar fields as undergraduates. But they were looking for a way to use their skills to solve real-world problems. Our program provides a perfect opportunity for doing just that. The work of biostatisticians has led to breakthroughs in HIV, cancer, climate science, health disparities, and lately, COVID. Statistical science underpins research findings related to almost all aspects of health. Key examples include personalized medicine, analysis of genetic and genomic data, analysis of medical images, modeling infectious disease dynamics, development of new treatments for disease, and quantifying the impacts of health disparities and social determinants of health. We work with scientists, physicians, and others to design studies properly, collect the right information, analyze the data with models and algorithms, and — perhaps most importantly — explain what it all means.

We invite alums and students of HBCUs to explore this new opportunity and for others to share the news widely with their networks.

With best wishes,

Joseph Hogan