Many students at Wesleyan have had incredible summer experiences in new and unfamiliar environments, such as while abroad or during an internship. I, however, spent my summer here as a participant in the QAC Apprenticeship program. My time was mainly spent in the Allbritton computer lab – a place where some wouldn’t expect to have a rewarding summer.
I’ve always considered myself a quantitative thinker, but when I learned how to perform data analysis in SPSS, SAS, Stata and R, I found new opportunities to think critically and explore different ways of problem-solving. One of these opportunities was the research project I worked on throughout my time in the program. Working with Professors Jennifer Rose and Pavel Oleinikov, I used R to analyze administrative insurance data and determined factors which affect the probability of a patient being a frequent user of hospital ER services. By the end of the program, I had a predictive model to classify patients as frequent ER users.
I consider myself very lucky to have had the opportunity to gain skills in data software and data analysis, and to be continuing my research project this semester. My summer experience has helped me realize that I want to continue working on data analysis projects after graduating. I strongly encourage anyone with a research topic they are curious about and with an interest in experiential learning to check out the QAC!