By Nathalie Moreau
Students and patrons from the University of Miami (UM) and the Coral Gables community gathered at Miami Business School’s Storer Auditorium for the third annual Big Data Conference held on Thursday, December 6, 2018. CCS Center Director Nick Tsinoremas led the organization of the Conference. Tsinoremas explained how the event got its start and said, “We had our first conference about three years ago as a joint effort between the Miami Business School and the Center for Computational Science (CCS). We knew big data would pose many challenges, and we wanted to provide a forum for conversation between academia and local industry.”
The afternoon started off with light refreshments as Conference attendees checked in and mingled around the Storer lobby. UM’s Provost Jeffrey Duerk offered an opening address, and brought up relatable examples of big data analytics to set the tone for the conversation. “We think about enrollment management and retention of students as a big data problem. Can we do better in selecting the students that will persist and excel in the university as a big data problem and those students who for example may be struggling? Are there ways that we can identify them from a big data perspective?”
The first panel “Capability Building for Big Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence” was moderated by Pete Martinez, CEO of SIVOTEC Analytics, who started the conversation by introducing the first group of panelists: Marvin Mayorga, partner at Data Meaning, Arthur Kordon, CEO of Kordon Consulting, Dr. Mitsunori Ogihara University of Miami Professor, and Sanjeev Taran senior manager at Deloitte. The panel answered a slew of questions from both Martinez and the audience, and used their expertise to better inform on the realities of big data analytics. Panelist Marvin Mayorga, pinpointed the three V’s of big data, volume, variety, and velocity during his discussion. He added that value and veracity were also strong factors when it comes to data analytics.
After the conclusion of panel one Martinez expressed what he thought was the most thought-provoking question of the discussion, “My favorite question had to do with how to generate new value from data. Given that the data is there, what do you do with it? And that is at the core of everything we are doing right now. There is not one straight answer, it depends on the company, what they’re doing, and how much data they have.”
The second panel focused on “Data Governance, Privacy, and Cybersecurity in the Era of Big Data.” Allison Eng-Perez, Deloitte’s Higher Education sector leader, moderated and introduced guest speakers: Filippo Marino, founder and managing partner of Tegumen, Martin Levy, executive at Diversified Industrials, Dr. Louis Gidel Baptist Health’s Chief Medical Informatics Officer, A. Michael Froomkin, Laurie Silvers & Mitchell Rubenstien Distinguished Professor of Law at UM, and Raimundo Rodulfo, Director of Information Technology at the City of Coral Gables. Glenda Rodriguez, ETL developer at Writer Systems, attended the Conference and was intrigued by the topics discussed in panel two. “I liked the insights that were given. It’s not always about the data, it’s about first finding the problem. The data is a part of the solution. “
Amuni Logan, a UM Junior and Business Technology major, thinks other students would benefit from attending the Conference. “I would definitely recommend that students attend. Like we said today, the age of technology is super important and people need to know how to conduct themselves when they are using technology.”
To keep up to date with events hosted by the Center for Computational Science visit http://ccs.miami.edu/events/ .