Who we are

We are researchers of all levels who are affiliated in some way with the Data Science Center at the University of Wyoming. In the interest of learning about one another and our interests, this page is meant as an informal listing of participants in our working groups and other activities.

@Jessi Rick - I am a PhD candidate in the Wagner Lab and Program in Ecology at the University of Wyoming and a guest researcher at the Center for Advanced Systems Understanding in Görlitz, Germany. I am interested in questions at the interface of population genomics and phylogenomics, and am working with a couple different freshwater fish taxa for my dissertation. With this research, I use Teton/Linux/bash and R extensively, and have picked up a little Python. I also use Git, LaTeX, and markdown as a part of my research workflows, although I’m still learning how best to use all of these. I came to UW knowing nothing about HPCs and having used R and Linux very minimally, and am mostly self-taught other than Alex’s Computational Biology classes, an ARCC workshop here or there, and Data Science Working Group meetings.

@Eryn McFarlane - I’m a postdoc in the Buerkle Lab, although I’m physically in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. My research is on genomics of hybridization in wild animals, with empirical data collected on wild deer (Scotland) and wild flycatchers (Sweden). I’m often wrong, occasionally right, and always game to try. I use R primarily, but I’d be keen to learn python.

@Simon Alexander - By day, I'm the Software Manager/Analyst Programmer working at ARCC (Advanced Research Computing Center) at the University of Wyoming assisting users with their software needs and general HPC cluster usage. By night, I'm a part-time PhD student within the Computer Science department looking at using Immersive/Visual Analytics to understand how to build tools to augment and assist the data science process. One current area of focus is looking to apply this within a context of network science by building graphs of overlapping activity spaces, built from user GPS locations (currently defined from tweet information) and considering if we can use such networks, with ideas from agent-based modelling, to simulate the spread of infectious diseases from both a spatial and temporal aspect.

@Jared Studyvin - I am a faculty member in the Math and Statistics department. My topic area is statistical consulting. I enjoy collaborating with other researchers. I love participating in the process of transforming/translating research question into statistical analyses that lead to actionable solutions. I am knowledgeable with R and most statistical analyses. Please feel free to reach out to me.

@Mallory Lai –I am a PhD student in the data science track of the Biomedical Sciences program in Dr. Tim Robinson’s lab. I’m obsessed with psychoneuroimmunology (how our immune system and nervous system interact with each other) and am particularly fascinated by the gut microbiome’s role in immunity and mental health. I’m currently attempting to develop a hybrid network/ML method to identify community ecological interactions that aren’t currently being captured with co-occurrence/correlation networks. I want to learn more about compositional data, multilayer networks, text analysis, AWS services, and SQL. I have a decent amount of experience using the R packages ‘bnlearn,’ ‘igraph,’ ‘visNetwork,’ ‘plotly,’ and ‘data.table.’ My favorite package is ‘beepr.’

@Melissa DeSiervo I am a population and community ecologist and a postdoc in Lauren Shoemaker’s lab. I am pretty savvy with R and many types of statistical analyses (especially multivariate stats). I’ve gone down lots of rabbitholes for various research tasks over the years, and I enjoy learning new techniques. I’m a fairly new user of Git, LaTeX, and I’m trying to get better at using those in reproducible research. I’m really enjoying gaining access to more data science experts at UW and absorbing what I can.

@Emily Gipson - I am a masters student in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Wyoming in the Materials Computation and Data Science (MCDC) lab run by Dr. Aidhy. I’ve got a strong preference for procedural programing languages like C and Fortran though I am most comfortable with Matlab (if you can’t do it in Matlab is if even worth doing?). I’ve got a background in LaTex through Overleaf and I’m a MS PowerPoint super fan. I am new to machine learning and am struggling to use python (object oriented programming is my sworn enemy). I am hoping to explore the wide world of data science and influence my approach to research.

@Alex Buerkle – I am a professor in the Department of Botany at the University of Wyoming, where I specialize in research on evolutionary genetics and computational biology. I am the director of the Data Science Center, which we started with funding from an NSF EPSCoR grant and subsequently received donor support for from Mary and Trent McDonald and their establishment of an endowment. I like helping people conceptualize their work and translate their needs into computational solutions. I like making things work and solving problems with code. I have never had a computing class, though I read books, watch videos, and learn from the web. In junior high school in Boulder, when the first Apple computers came to our school, the teachers let me unbox them and set them up. Improbably, they also let me take one home for the weekends and I figured out to program in Basic from books (there was no internet yet) and played early computer-based games. I know about UNIX, perl, R, C, C++, latex, git, hdf5, GSL, statistical modeling things (including big hierarchical models for millions of parameters), and am learning about more canonical machine learning and some python.

@Joshua Harrison — I am a postdoc in the Buerkle lab at the University of Wyoming. I like studying rare, weird plants; insects; fungi; and other oddball things that generally escape attention. At the moment, I am interesting in understanding how predictable ecological and evolutionary phenomena are. Mostly self taught, but had a few computational classes in grad school. I use R and Linux a lot, python some, and occasionally have messed with other languages. Other stuff I know a bit about include: stats, reproducible research methods (git, latex, markdown, make), and machine learning (various algorithms and APIs, don’t know much about image-based analyses or methods).

@Gregg Randolph I am the manager of the Genome Technologies Lab at the University of Wyoming. I am a beginning to lower middling bioinformatician. My experience is mostly R, linux, with a touch of perl and python. I also use similar logical programming to program our automated liquid handlers.

@Linnea Rock – I’m a graduate student in the Program in Ecology researching ecological stoichiometry in aquatic ecosystems. I use R a lot and am eager ot learn more about everything data science!

@Lucia Combrink I’m a MSc student in the Wagner Lab and Botany Department at the University of Wyoming. My thesis project focuses on ecological-evolutionary interactions between stocked trout and zooplankton and I have just barely dipped my toes into genomics and population genetics methods to further explore these processes. I’m a very new user of Git, LaTeX, R, Teton/Linux/bash, and markdown and have immensely enjoyed the opportunity to build my knowledge and skill set at this Data Science Center working group.

@Scott Klasek I’m a postdoc working with Cynthia Weinig and Lois Maignien (Marine Biological Laboratory & University of Western Brittany, France) on studying microbial communities in the rhizosphere, the area of soil influenced by plant roots and the compounds they exude. I am using some machine learning and bayesian multilevel modeling to identify microbes associated with plant growth promotion (but that doesn’t mean I understand them… lol). I use mostly R and Git and am happy to discuss anything microbiome-related, especially if there’s interest in metagenomics & genome assembly.

@Victoria DeLeo I’m a postdoc in the Buerkle lab at University of Wyoming with the modelscape project. I study variation in plant phenotypes and genotypes across space in response to environment. I mostly use Linux/bash, R, and git, but my first programming experience was using SPEL+ to build a liquid handling robotic system. Ask me about Generalized Additive Models or sparse modeling methods! My current data sci learning goal is to figure out singularity and how to use containers on Teton.

@Kelsey Ruehling I’m a MSc student in the Collins lab in the Zoology and Physiology department at the University of Wyoming. I study aquatic microbial communities in Wyoming and communicate these findings with local conservation groups and land managers working to improve water quality. I use R and dabble in Git. My data sci learning goal is to become better friends with Teton and using command line.

@Josh Jahner I’m a postdoc in the Buerkle lab who uses genetic sequencing datasets to address evolutionary questions in a wide variety of organisms, including some with conservation or restoration concerns. I get really excited when thinking about diversification, hybridization, and hierarchical population structure, and I have a lot of fun trying to make really cool figures for manuscripts. I mostly use R, Unix, Perl, and Latex, but I also have a rudimentary understanding of Python and Git.

@Erin Bentley

@Damir Pulatov I’m a computer science graduate student in the MALLET lab at the University of Wyoming. I mostly program in R, Python and write shell scripts to automate parts of my workflow. My Data Science learning objectives are to learn more about AWS, HPC and statistics as well as getting more involved in free software development.

@Alex Lewanski

@Lars Kotthoff

@Andrew Siefert

@Will Rosenthal

… please add yourself here …