Name: Bharat Reddy
Name: Barbara Thompson
After a career of over 30 years in the oil & gas industry including design, project management, business unit leader, business development and strategy, Ms. Thompson entered the Masters Analytics program at Texas A&M University to broaden her access to the industry agnostic field of data analytics. Barbara’s goal was to leverage her leadership and project management skills in order to lead strategy and implementation of Digital and Big Data transformations for clients. Within her roles in Business Development and Strategy Creation, Ms. Thompson has been responsible for acquiring and analyzing industry trends, customer feedback, R&D planning, and new product roll-outs.
Her capstone project was sourced by the University for an outside client that requested assistance in planning market penetration for its products. Led by the principal capstone project coach, Dr. Ed Jones, Ms. Thompson joined two other classmates in creating prediction models for market growth/shrinkage for this client. The successful capstone project was well received by both the University advisors and the end client.
Name: Shaun Wright
Shaun Wright holds degrees in Physics and Geophysics from King’s and Imperial College of the University of London. His fifty years of experience in the oil and gas industry has taken him from “Juggy” on a field exploration crew, to CEO of a publicly listed IT services company.
He is currently an independent Analytics Consultant.
Name: John Bonfardeci II
John Bonfardeci is a graduate of the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas having earned a Bachelor of Applied Arts and Science (Magna Cum Laude) with a major in Information Systems and a minor in Psychology. He graduated from the Texas A&M Analytics program in 2018. He currently serves branches of the US government as a software developer and data scientist for a government contractor in Washington D.C.
Having served a nonprofit home health care company in Texas for 9+ years as a developer/analyst, John hypothesized that denied Medicaid claims could be predicted with the goal of improving efficiency and operational viability. Hypothesis turned into theory with supporting evidence in the Spring of 2018. With three and a half years of data or 46 million claims, his capstone presentation, “Predicting Denied Claims with Decision Trees,” proved that a valid model predicted denied Medicaid claims with over 95% accuracy. Knowing the significant predictors of denied claims would allow any outpatient health care agency to shine a spotlight on problem areas and take proactive measures to improve efficiency of operation and quality of service.
Name: Patty Stanton
Patty Stanton grew up in Brownsville, Texas. During her senior year at Pace High School, attending Texas A&M University was on her wish list, however, Patty ended up joining the military and moved out of state. She currently works as a Senior Performance Analyst for the Social Security Administration.
Patty’s capstone project, titled ‘Using Decision Trees to Analyze Patterns in Disability Fraud’, analyzed data from disability claims filed under the Supplement Security Income program from years 2014 and 2015. As she identified that over half of the claims flagged for fraud have mental health related impairments, she further narrowed her analysis to focus on fraud patterns among claims listing a mental health impairment as the primary diagnosis.
Her model was able to identify attributes of claims that showed a high potential that may be flagged for fraud, as high as 75 percent. The office deciding the claim, age of claimant and time it took to decide claims were significant attributes.
Name: Pablo Ormachea
Pablo is a native Texan who was born in Bryan County, only a stone’s throw away from TAMU. He holds a Bachelor of Arts with dual majors in History and Government from the University of Texas-Austin, along with a Business Foundations certificate (highest distinction) from the UT McComb’s School of Business. Before attending TAMU, he earned a juris doctorate from Harvard Law School, where he won its largest student writing prize, served as co-editor-in-chief of the Harvard Latino Law Review, and co-Chair of the Harvard Latin American Law Society. Today, he is the proud owner of a Master’s of Science in data analytics from Texas A&M University’s department of statistics, where he served as a research assistant, won an award for the highest GPA, and received an endowed prize for best capstone project from a non-profit. During his studies, he has won several fellowships for international work, both for public service and for research abroad.
Pablo currently serves as co-Director of the Center of Science and Law, an interdisciplinary think tank with the goal of constructing a cost-effective legal system with higher utility and lower cost. The Center seeks to develop new technologies that intersect with the criminal justice system in a novel way, including a tablet that measures offender decision-making. He has been awarded nearly $800,000 in research funds from the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Justice for his study of crime patterns and the efficacy of legislation using qualitative research blended with large-scale database analysis techniques developed and honed by the TAMU program.
Name: Sasi Shifarraw
Sasi Shifarraw is a Lead Analyst on the Enterprise Analytics team at Memorial Hermann Health System. Having worked in healthcare IT for the past ten years, Sasi enjoys the rewarding work of providing data in the form of reports and dashboards to clinical end users who rely on that information to make important decisions. Sasi is passionate about the power of data and is excited to now work with the statistical and analytical skills she has gained through the MS Analytics degree at Texas A&M. Sasi was awarded the Margaret Sheather Memorial Award in Analytics, for best nonprofit organization project, for her model that determines the key drivers of patient ratings in the HCAHPS hospital surveys.
Past Recipients in Statistics
Name: Weiyin Zhou
Project Name: Segmentation-Based Detection of Mosaic Chromosomal Abnormality in Bladder Cancer Cells Using Whole Genome SNP Arrays.
Weiyin received her online Master’s degree in May 2014 under the advisement of Alan Dabney. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science (with College Honors) in 2003 from the University of Illinois, Chicago. Weiyin previously worked as a Bioinformatics Analyst for the SAIC National Cancer Institute where she participated in all bioinformatics facets of Genome Wide Associate Studies.Weiyin was chosen for this award because of the outstanding work displayed in her report. Weiyin’s research investigated the relationship between mosaic chromosomal abnormality and bladder cancer. DNA of 3,239 individuals consisted of 1,673 bladder cancer cases and 1,566 cancer-free controls were examined for evidence of mosaicism of the autosomes using genome-wide SNP array data generated from bladder cancer genome wide association analysis. The project found that mosaic autosomal abnormalities were positively associated with bladder cancer for male but not for female, the frequency of mosaicism increased with age for male control subjects, and the mosaic events were more frequent in males than females for bladder cancer individuals but similar for cancer-free.
Masters Project Report
Name: Elizabeth Jennings
Project Name: Integrated Analysis of Genomics Data.
Elizabeth received her Master’s degree in August, 2012 under the advisement of Raymond Carroll. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics (with an emphasis in Statistics) also from Texas A&M University in 2010. Under the direction of her advisors, she developed a method to integrate data from several genomic platforms in order to identify not only which genes are prognostic in cancer, but also through which genetic mechanism the effects are modulated. These new statistics modeling techniques offer more power to identify, and more biological insight to understand, cancer biomarkers. After developing the method, it was applied to a brain cancer dataset made public by The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), and several prognostic biomarkers were identified. Elizabeth added, “I hope the methods developed in my project will be beneficial to future cancer research endeavors.” She is currently pursuing a Ph.D in Statistics at Texas A&M University.
Masters Project Report
Name: Alexander Little
Project Name: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Ground Water Conservation Districts in the Gulf Coast Aquifer of Texas.
Alex received his Mater’s degree in May, 2012 under the advisement of Thomas Wehrly. He is a graduate of Pomona College, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Geology in 2002. He is currently working to publish the results of his project, which includes a new method of aggregating the sparse, unevenly spaced, covariance nonstationary observations typical of well-level measurements by removing the baseline differences between wells and removing the seasonal component of the time series to calculate regional average measurements. Alex holds teacher certifications in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and spent four years teaching math and science to at-risk students in inner city schools and prisons. Alex is a member of Statistics
Without Borders, and he currently lives in Paraquay.
Masters Project Report
Name: Michelle Pflueger
Project Name: Electrical Submersible Pump Survival Analysis.
Michelle received her Master’s degree in May, 2011 under the advisement of Jianhua Huang. She is also a graduate of UC Berkeley, where she earned a BS in Chemical Engineering in 2000. Michelle works as a Petroleum Engineer for Chevron and her career has given her the opportunity to work in multiple countries, both in the field and in central technology groups. Her goal is continue to find ways to apply the statistical theory she has learned at Texas A&M to common Petroleum Engineering problems encountered in the oil industry.
Masters Project Report
Name: Xiaolei Xun
Project Name: Statistical Method on A Basic Tomography Problem.
Xiaolei received her Master’s degree in December, 2009, under the advisement of Bani Mallick and Raymond Carroll. She plans to continue with the department for a Ph.D. in Statistics as well. She also has served as the secretary of the Statistics Graduate Student Association from 2009 to 2010.
Masters Project Report