Each week on “On a Mission” we talk to community leaders who are out to make a positive impact in the area. Today, our host Dr. Wendy Norfleet talks with Dan Richard and Karthikeyan Umapathy from UNF Florida Data Science for Social Good.
To learn more, visit https://dssg.unf.edu/
Short company description:
The Florida Data Science for Social Good (FL-DSSG) program blends data science and technology design to inform and solve important social problems in Florida. We accomplish this goal by partnering with nonprofit organizations in Florida, analyzing their data, and finding impactful solutions to social issues. The FL-DSSG program provides internships for students from diverse disciplines to work on these data science projects along with our community partners. Nonprofit organizations receive data analysis and visualization reports supporting their work in the Florida communities. Florida DSSG is hosted at the University of North Florida (UNF). Dr. Dan Richard, Associate Professor in Psychology, and Dr. Karthikeyan Umapathy, Associate Professor in Computing, spearhead the FL-DSSG program.
How do you define success?
We define our success based on our impact on students and nonprofit partners. Student interns are learning and developing data science and soft skills during the internship. A good indicator of program success is when we meet DSSG alums at other events; they talk about how they use the skills learned during the internship in their workplace. Regarding community partners, we know our efforts are successful when nonprofits use the data science solutions we created to obtain new grants and expand their service offerings.
What are your biggest goals in the next 12 Months for your business?
We are expanding program opportunities to include social good hackathon activities and finding different ways to fundraise to support program activities.