Hannah Smith, Distinguished Scholar

Major: Mathematics (concentration in statistics and optimization)

Minor: General business

Hometown: Morristown, Tennessee

Favorite Experience at UA: My favorite overall experience during my time at UA has been my participation in undergraduate research through the Honors College. During the spring semester of 2020, I enrolled in an honors seminar called Palaeohydrology. During this course, I led a team of 6 other undergraduate students in research of Alabama and Florida rivers’ streamflow. This project was created to reconstruct the streamflow of 3 Alabama and Florida rivers to determine the natural variability of the watersheds. This 4 month-long research project allowed me to develop the necessary skills for a future career in data analysis, such as regression analysis and data reconstruction. This experience allowed me to learn about applications of data analysis and statistics in the field of geological sciences. I also had the opportunity to collaborate with a group of other motivated undergraduate scholars from all backgrounds to complete this project. I am thankful for the Honors College’s commitment to providing ample opportunity and accessibility for students to complete undergraduate research in seminar settings.

Favorite Class: My favorite class I have taken at Alabama has been ST 452, Applied Regression Analysis with Dr. Wang. The topics of this course consisted of multiple regression analysis and logistic regression, as well as the application of those topics. During this course, we had multiple projects using data sets from various real-world examples to create regression models. One specific project we worked on was analyzing several NCAA football teams and determining how their winning percentages were correlated with various rankings, such as offensive yards rank and rushing defensive yards rank. These projects that we worked on throughout the semester allowed me to see how the skills we were learning about in class can be applied in a future career. In addition to the enjoyment of the topics in this class, Dr. Wang provided ample support to me and other students throughout the semester. Dr. Wang genuinely wanted his students to succeed, and it was evident in his teaching and conversations with the students. My passion for data analysis has grown exponentially thanks to this class and Dr. Wang.

Future Plans: Attending the University of Tennessee Knoxville Graduate School to obtain MS in Industrial Engineering.