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Originally from India, Shubh Saraswat moved to the U.S. to pursue a better education.  

Previously, Shubh considered game design and development, but found his passion for statistics which lead to his first undergraduate degree in that field at Eastern Kentucky University along with a minor in mathematics and mathematical science. 

After taking several types of statistics undergraduate courses, he fell in love with data analysis, so he added a certificate in Applied Data Science to his academic resume.

Shubh is now a current student in the Master of Science in Biostatistics (MSBST) program at the University of Kentucky College of Public Health (CPH). 

CPH launched its first MSBST cohort in the Fall of 2022, which meets the needs of candidates who seek careers in healthcare, government health agencies, biomedical research, and pharmaceutical industries which all require advanced knowledge in analyzing health science data. 

He is also working as a research assistant with Dr. Douglas Zhang, biostatistics professor at CPH, assisting Dr. Zhang with several projects over the semester including analyzing big data.  

“I initially chose the MSBST program because prior to graduate school, I was only exposed to general statistics and lacked applying this to real world problems,” says Shubh. “UK’s MSBST program is more specific in the public health care system, and I can still apply my statistical skills to the real-world problems while learning more specific topics related to health care.” 

“The Covid-19 pandemic brought the importance of a field like biostatistics front and center. This degree will provide an opportunity to work in areas which can help improve public health care,” adds Shubh.

The symbiotic relationship between CPH’s departments of biostatistics and epidemiology trains MSBST students to work as "team-scientists" to fill an emerging workforce gap in the intersection of these two fields. 

Furthermore, the MSBST programs teaches candidates traditional biostatistics methodology, prepares them to work alongside epidemiologists (and other subject-matter experts), and provides the unique skills to work with epidemiological data such as healthcare data, case reports, and more — training students to work in the emerging field of health data science. 

“As a first-time research assistant, I am enjoying working with Dr. Douglas Zhang while gaining valuable knowledge on data analysis and the perspective of a biostatistician,” says Shubh. “I am looking forward in continuing to collaborate with other scientists on campus, for instance from the UK College of Medicine, by analyzing data and presenting reports based on results produced.” 

Recognizing the current and future demand for more advanced biostatisticians, the MSBST program offers a unique mix of core and electives courses, real-world projects, experiential learning/training opportunities, and strong campus partnerships to prepare graduates to make an impact in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the region, and beyond.

My goal is to be able to put my master’s degree to effective use by working in the industry as a data analyst or a biostatistician,” says Shubh. “I believe the knowledge and training that I’m receiving will prepare to pursue that career.” 

Shubh joined the inaugural class in the Fall of 2022 at the University of Kentucky, which provides students the educational opportunities to be trained to work in the emerging field of health data science. 

“It’s a fantastic opportunity to be a part of the first MSBST class, which provides me valuable knowledge and training to become biostatisticians,” says Shubh. “When I applied to other graduate schools, I wanted to pursue a master’s degree in Statistics, but then I found out about the MSBST at UK.” 

“After contacting Dr. Amanda Ellis (vice chair, department of biostatistics, and director of graduate studies of the MSBST program at CPH), I learned more about the program’s deliverables and real-world application. Our conversations furthered my interest in the program because I was confident that it would help me reach my career goals," adds Shubh.

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