Biostatistics student earns Disney Data and Analytics Award

Published on July 11, 2023

Kailey Mulligan of the Department of Biostatistics at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.
Kailey Mulligan

Kailey Mulligan, a doctoral student in biostatistics, was recently selected as one of four recipients of the Disney Data and Analytics Women’s Award. This nationally competitive award, sponsored by The Walt Disney Company, aims to encourage, support, and champion women in STEM fields, increase the number of women entering analytics, and highlight Disney’s various uses of analytics.

In addition to preparing an essay detailing their interests in data and analytics, award applicants were required to submit a project poster showcasing an original do-it-yourself quantitative project that solved a problem using mathematical models, statistical tests, and/or machine learning, while also being testable and reproducible. Applicants also had to demonstrate academic excellence in their current program.

Mulligan’s project utilized two publicly available national broadband datasets to compare broadband availability at the county-level. One of these data sources required significant pre-processing, which Mulligan addressed by developing an original application (package) in the R statistical programming language. The broadband data was linked to veteran-level data to investigate how veterans are impacted by broadband availability.

As part of this award, Mulligan will be sponsored by Disney to attend the 2023 Disney Data and Analytics Conference in August at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, where she will present the project she submitted in her award application.