ASA DataFest@U of T: A weekend of intense student data wrangling
Earlier this month, the University of Toronto hosted an official ASA DataFest. Sponsored by the American Statistical Association, the weekend-long event — which is much like a hackathon, but instead of a programming problem, participants are given a data analysis problem — drew 20 teams of undergraduate students from across the university for an intense weekend of data wrangling, analysis and discussion at the the Department of Computer Science’s Innovation Lab (DCSIL).
“Undergraduate students don’t typically get the opportunity to work on problems involving data that arise in realistic settings,” said the event’s lead organizer Nathan Taback, an assistant professor, teaching stream in U of T’s Department of Statistical Sciences in the Faculty of Arts & Science. “At Datafest, students work together with real — messy and complicated — data, an experience they just can’t get from a textbook.