UVI Bulletin Board for December

University of the Virgin Islands

UVI Students Take Top Honors at National Biomedical Research Conference Three students from the University of the Virgin Islands, the Caribbean’s preeminent Historically Black College and University (HBCU) captured Best Poster Awards at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) last week in Indianapolis.
This recognition comes on the heels of five University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) students winning the 2nd Annual Hewlett Packard HBCU Business Challenge competition this month.
Samuel Liburd, a senior biology major, was recognized for the poster he presented in developmental biology and genetics, which featured work he did use Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) gene techniques to understand regeneration in planarians. He did this research at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT) this summer under the guidance and mentorship of Malecek, Ph.D. and Peter Reddien, Ph.D. Samuel is mentored at UVI by Dr. Jennilee Robinson.
Sophomore Arziel Williams, a psychology major from the Albert A. Sheen Campus on St. Croix, won best poster in the social sciences for his research on depression and obesity in Virgin Islanders. He was assisted by his research mentor Dr. Janis Valmond.
More information is available in a news release on the Media Section of the UVI website – http://www.uvi.edu/

UVI Welcomes New Professor of Data Science The University of the Virgin Islands welcomes Dr. Joanne Sylvia Luciano to the university’s College of Science and Mathematics. She will work in the Department of Computer and Computational Sciences to develop curriculum in data science. This multidisciplinary field blends data inference, algorithm development, and technology in order to solve analytically complex problems. Data science is ultimately about using this data in creative ways to generate business value while being sensitive to and respectful of data privacy, data security, data stewardship and the ethical use of data. The incoming professor has so far proposed two new courses in health web science and will be teaching a special topics course in data science this spring.
“We are very pleased to have Dr. Luciano working with us. She has been working with a team of faculty from computer science, mathematics, and business to submit a proposal to National Science Foundation (NSF) for support in developing interdisciplinary programs in Data Science,” said the Dean of College of Science and Mathematics, Dr. Sandra Romano. “Their work is exciting and would provide some great opportunities in data science for our students. We’re very much looking forward to Dr. Luciano working with us on Data Science projects that will provide a lot of interesting opportunities for both faculty and students.”
Luciano’s research uses computational modeling and the World Wide Web to improve health care and advance medical discovery. Luciano is an experienced technology consultant to major hospitals, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. “The focus of my research is to create technologies that make it easy to do interdisciplinary by utilizing semantic technologies that maintain the context of data. “There is an urgent need to shorten the time it takes to bring basic science research results to practice, and to get the clinical or field observations back to the research lab for further analysis,” she said. “To do this, technologies need to be in place that allows scientists to better represent, reuse, and communicate their data.”
More information is available in a news release on the Media Section of the UVI website – http://www.uvi.edu/

Eastern Caribbean Center to Conduct V.I. Community Survey The Eastern Caribbean Center of the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) will conduct the 2018 Virgin Islands Community Survey (VICS) during the months of November and December 2018. This scientific survey of a sample of households is a follow-up to the one conducted in 2016. The information collected is similar to that gathered in the Population and Housing Census of 2010.
Virgin Islands Community Survey (VICS) data for 2018 will be gathered on two topics: population and housing. Population questions cover items such as age, sex, education, ethnic origin, employment, health insurance, veteran status and disability. Housing questions cover items about the housing unit in which respondents live, such as water source, internet access, number of rooms, utilities, ownership and rent. “When processed, the 2018 VICS will provide data for agencies whose jobs are to organize and plan for the social, educational, health, economic and other needs of the community,” said Dr. Frank Mills, acting director of the Eastern Caribbean Center. “The data are also used by private-sector individuals for decision making and employed by others to develop important indices of the status of children in the territory,” Dr. Mills said.
The University of the Virgin Islands requests the cooperation of the public when interviewers carrying UVI photo IDs visit households on all three islands. Unlike the census, this is a scientific sample survey and not every household will be interviewed.
More information is available in a news release on the Media Section of the UVI website – http://www.uvi.edu/