The Nash Medal in Statistics was awarded this year to Naitong Chen.
Naitong graduated with a major in Statistics in May 2020 with an exemplary transcript coupled with hands-on research experience. And the department is delighted that he is continuing his UBC training in the Statistics M.Sc. program.
In the summers of 2019 and 2020, Naitong worked with Professor Trevor Campbell on several projects. In one 2019 project, Naitong sharpened his computing skills implementing an inference algorithm in the probabilistic programming language Stan. In the other 2019 project, he put his math skills to work developing and studying an algorithm to find a control-variate design for stochastic optimization using sparse distribution approximations. This past summer, he explored the application of data summarization methods (Bayesian coreset) to streaming data.
The Nash Medal in Statistics is given each year to the most outstanding graduating student in the B.Sc. program in Statistics. The medal recognizes the great service to Statistics given by Professor Stanley Nash (1915–2001) over his more than 40 years at UBC.
The Nash Medal is supported by the Statistics Fund for Excellence.