2013 ISIB Participant Presentations and Feedback

As a part of the Iowa Summer Institute in Biostatistics, participants are given a list of potential projects and choose the one that looks the most interesting to them.  They work as a biostatistician on the project and give a presentation on their findings at the Biostatistics Iowa Summer Research Symposium.

The 2013 participants’ presentations are listed below along with their comments about the program.

Lesly Almanzar, Reed Johnson, Alexandria Leonhardt, and Evelyn Rodríguez Correa


Predictors in Determining Recurrence of Pancreatic Cancer


Lesly Almanzar

“Attending the ISIB program was one of the best decisions I made thus far. I learned more than I anticipated. Coming into this program with minimum knowledge of statistics, I was able to grasp information quickly with the help and encouragement of great professors such as Dr. Zamba and Dr. Smith. The research process of this program was definitely something new for me, but definitely rewarding at the end. Also, this program allowed me to meet new people from all over the United States and form an unforgettable friendship with them. I would recommend this program to anyone, not only will you learn about the field of Biostatistics, but you also form unforgettable memories.”

Reed Johnson

“ISIB was a fantastic combination of classroom learning and hands-on experience that allowed me to learn so much about statistics and discover what biostatistics is really about.  The wonderful faculty and staff made this program very fun and enjoyable.  This has been a truly wonderful summer.”

Alexandria Leonhardt

“This summer I had an introduction to statistical programming, which was challenging at first, but now is a language I understand and can use. I was able to use this programing knowledge and apply it to a project where I have interest. Being one of the only students who isn’t declared a math major I did not feel academically behind or unprepared for the classroom portion of this program.  Instead, I was able to apply my biology background to better understand the data we were analyzing.  It was an amazing opportunity to work with the medical students on a real data set. I felt like the work I was doing was actually contributing to real world problems and hopefully making a difference for future patients suffering with pancreatic cancer.”

Evelyln Rodríguez

“ISIB program was a great experience; I had the opportunity to meet wonderful people. I learned a lot of what it means to be a Biostatistician and all the amazing opportunities of interdisciplinary research it involves. I don’t regret doing this program, it was a great chance for me to expand my horizons and I feel I am a better student and person because of it. This was an awesome program and I would definitely recommend it to students considering a grad school.”

Zachary Bales, Linette De La Rosa and Vanessa Salvary


Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations: Impact on Incidence of Lung Cancer


Zachary Bales

“This summer was a great experience.  I learned an incredible amount about biostatistics in an engaging way.  I got to interact with awesome professors that have helped me to see that biostatistics is what I most likely want to study in grad school.  Prior to the ISIB experience, I never would have considered that as an option.  There are too many positives to list but overall I would recommend this program to anyone who has the opportunity to participate in it.”

Linette De La Rosa

“The ISIB program was a great learning experience, which made me want to learn more and become more.  Thanks for giving me the opportunity to meet all the Biostatistics family and for let me be part of it.  I had a really good time with beautiful people, people that love the work they do (Biostatistics).  I recommend this amazing program.  It was a pleasure!”

Vanessa Salvary

“It can be difficult to motivate yourself to enjoy math or science courses, but the realistic and real-world application of biostatistics makes it easy to enjoy. The faculty members have a genuine passion for their work and are true professionals of their fields. ISIB is such a unique program and it has truly been a rewarding life and research experience.”

Ryan Kelly, Mary Menges and Emily Ramos


Analysis of Risk Factors for Bullying: The Iowa Youth Survey


Ryan Kelly

“This program gave me fantastic insight as to what it is really like to work as a biostatistician. If you are unsure about what your post-graduate plans are, and biostatistics is an option, then I would highly recommend this program. Even if you decide that biostatistics is not for it, the program is still an amazing and invaluable experience.”

Mary Menges

“I’ve learned so much at ISIB 2013 about biostatistics and about grad school in general. It was great to be able to test out biostatistics before committing to grad school. Everyone (faculty, staff, grad students, and ISIB students) was so wonderful. I’ve never made so many great friends so quickly. Thank you for a great experience!”

Emily Ramos

“The ISIB experience was priceless! Not only were we given talks, presentations and precious information from Biostatisticians all over the country, we were given one-on-one interaction with award-winning faculty from the University of Iowa on projects relevant in today’s world! Every day I came into class with an open mind eager to see what was in store for me and every day I was surprised at how much I learned. Every professor in the department was more than happy to meet with me and talk to me about my future graduate study plans and discuss where Biostatistics fits into that plan. I am so grateful for this experience and will encourage future students to apply! Thank you ISIB!”

Harrison Reeder, Kamrine Poels


Evaluating an Adaptive Clinical Trial with Quantitative Endpoints, Sample Size Re-estimation, Sequential Monitoring for Efficacy, and Monitoring for Futility


Harrison Reeder

“This has been a terrific summer; classroom time was engaging, while visits from prominent practitioners in the field we’re insightful and gave a vision to where pathways in Biostatistics may someday lead. The opportunity for research in the final project was novel and exciting, and offered valuable experience learning collaboratively with peers and with guidance from a faculty mentor. Beyond its value as an academic growth experience, the program also brought a group of 20 students with very different backgrounds together for a fun and pleasant 7 weeks, with many great activities and trips that helped us connect as friends as well as peers.”

Kamrine Poels

“This experience was very enlightening and insightful. I was introduced to the field of Biostatistics by people who have a lot of passion for this area. I also met people very similar to me, with the same interests and values; so the friendships I made are memorable!”

Joseph Sauder, Jennifer Guzmán and Muh Ling Chong


Ability to Recognize Feelings with Musical Stimuli for Individuals with Processing Disorders


Joseph Sauder

“I really enjoyed ISIB! I learned a lot and now know what lies in the field of Biostatistics. I now consider Statistics and Biostatistics as a possible path. I am grateful for the experience.”

Jennifer Guzmán

“Participating in this ISIB program gave me a better understanding of the field of biostatistics. This program has opened new doors for me for my future in graduate studies. This was really an amazing opportunity.”

Muh Ling Chong

“I am glad that I had made a right decision to participate in this wonderful Summer program. The passions of all the professors and faculty members here have inspired me to like Statistics more than I did before. Through this experience, I have a clearer insight of my future choices of grad schools and the direction of my future career.”

Darren Lai and Michael Schwartz


Modeling Discrete Time-Series Data from a Driving Simulator


Darren Lai

“Overall, the program was well-run and provided many opportunities into a biostatistics career. I liked that we were able to go to many different labs-hearing lab, glaucoma lab, and hydraulics lab, to name a few.”

Michael Schwartz

“The ISIB program widened my perspective on careers in mathematics and stimulated my interest in biostatistics.  The knowledge I gained from this program as well as the contacts I made with the professors was invaluable in connecting on a personal level to Iowa and biostatistics.  I enjoyed working on the project with my mentor (Dr. Dawson) and hanging out with the other students in the program. “

Erin Gerardo, Hailee Reist and Mónica Robles


A Genome-wide Association Study of Glaucoma and Age-related Macular Degeneration


Erin Geraldo

“The ISIB summer program was an amazing experience. I learned a significant amount of information regarding Biostatistics, and graduate school. I will leave this program more knowledgeable and confidence as a student. I highly recommend this program to undergraduate students interested in math, and science. The professors and staff were very passionate about their work, and kind. I am now significantly interested in the field of Biostatistics, and feel that the knowledge I have gained will make me a stronger applicant for graduate school. ISIB is a rare summer experience that I am thankful I participated in!”

Hailee Reist

“The summer program was a very good mix of different learning opportunities.  The classroom learning was very beneficial, but all the other activities and opportunities were also very important, such as the field trips to different areas that biostatisticians work with and informational sessions about graduate school and careers.  I feel like so many questions I never would have even thought to ask were answered during this program and I am much more prepared to make decisions about what I want to do after completing my undergraduate degree.”

Mónica Robles

“ISIB was truly an amazing experience that helped me grow as an intellectual individual. I feel like this program gave a great insight in what biostatistics is about. Apart from biostatistics, I really loved the diversity in our program and how much I learned about other cultures. I would definitely recommend this program to anyone with a thirst of knowledge and experience.”

Questions or comments? Contact Kirk, Terry. This page was last reviewed on September 6, 2016.