Department Goals

Our faculty bring a philosophy to the classroom and to their mentoring that is consistent with our department’s goals.

Maintain a culture where students, faculty and staff receive fair and equitable treatment

  • We solicit input through a variety of mechanisms such as student surveys administered at the course and school levels. This includes a survey of students at the time of their graduation, as well as a six-month follow-up survey. 
  • The chair of the department has individual year-end meetings with all faculty members to solicit input with respect to improving the direction of the department.
  • The chair has an open-door policy where faculty, staff and students are encouraged to raise any issues they deem relevant to the goals of the department.
  • The university, through the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, has a comprehensive set of policies and mechanisms for faculty, staff and students to formally air grievances, which the department strongly adheres to.

Recruit top-tier graduate students

  • Lili Tian, PhD, director of graduate studies, takes a personal approach and speaks with top-tier applicants one-on-one.
  • We offer competitive stipends. Top students are also eligible for supplemental support such as the President Fellowship Award.
  • We have set aside a recruiting travel budget, which allows prospective students to meet with current students and faculty members.
  • The undergraduate minor in statistics was developed as a mechanism for us to identify and recruit top UB undergraduate students to our MPH, MA and PhD graduate programs.
  • We maintain close contact with other area colleges, such as Canisius College, in terms of identifying top local prospects for our programs.

Prepare graduates for meaningful employment in industry, government, and academia

  • We have an excellent track record of working with other units on campus, as well as Roswell Park Cancer Institute in terms of providing research assistantships (RA) relative to working with a variety of biomedical researchers.
    • Examples range from four RA positions funded at Roswell Park Cancer Institute working in bioinformatics, clinical trials and statistical genetics to three RA’s working in the Population Health Observatory on problems related to informatics-driven health care and biostatistical research.
  • We provide in-house RA positions that pair two or more faculty members with a graduate student for the purpose of developing statistical theory papers in a highly collaborative fashion. These assistantships are geared towards PhD students with an interest in seeking employment in academia.

Provide outstanding and innovative teaching at the undergraduate and graduate level

  • We solicit student input in terms of electronic quality surveys for every course taught in the department.
  • All teaching assistants within the department are required to attend a short course provided by UB’s Teaching and Learning Center prior to the start of the fall semester.
  • We are constantly developing and enhancing our courses for our program to be considered cutting edge.
  • We recognize our faculty at the school level for outstanding teaching. Two of our faculty members have recently received the school’s Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award.

Provide adequate resources to fulfill our instructional, research and service objectives

  • We have invested in a dedicated computer lab accessible to all biostatistics graduate students.
  • We provide laptop computers in all student office space.
  • We have invested its resources in terms of hiring additional faculty to cover all of our teaching and service responsibilities.
  • We manage seven teaching assistant (TA) positions to assist in the instruction of the introductory undergraduate statistics course. We offer competitive stipends as compared to peer institutions.
  • We invest our own resources in hiring graders for any course for which enrollment exceeds 15 students for which the respective faculty member requests assistance.
  • Our Statistical Consulting Laboratory supports the university research community.
  • We cost-share research assistant salary with respect to assisting research groups by providing statistical support.
  • We provide high-level computing support in terms of hardware and software for all faculty, staff and students.
  • We provide a high level of travel support for faculty and students to attend professional meetings.
  • We provide all full-time graduate students with a membership to the American Statistical Association.
  • We have shared in the cost of developing and sustaining international collaborations.

Recruit and retain a diverse and well-qualified faculty

  • We maintain a 100% success rate for tenure and promotion cases.
  • The department chair makes every effort to obtain the appropriate salary increases for tenure and promotion cases within the constraints of our unionized system.
  • We provide substantial resources for faculty members to carry forth their own research agenda in terms of materials and labor support.
  • We consult with the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion for all job searches.

Seek extramural grant support for research and education

  • Faculty members collectively submit roughly 100 grants per year as principal investigators, co-principal investigators and co-investigators for both research and training grants.
  • Faculty members cover approximately 50% of their salaries through grant support.

Conduct and promote important methodological research

  • Faculty members publish their research on average eight times a year.
  • Faculty and students present their research at local and national research venues.
  • Faculty publish papers in top-tier biostatistical, bioinformatics, public health and medical journals.
  • Faculty members have an outstanding culture of collaborating with each other and working with students to develop joint publications.

Serve as vital contributors to collaborative research at the university and affiliated institutions

  • Faculty play an instrumental role in several large-scale grant applications such as Roswell Park’s Core Cancer Center Grant, cancer-based SPORE grants, the Gynecologic Oncology Group Data Coordinating grant and the university’s Center for Translational Science Award (CTSA) application.
  • Faculty members within the Center of Excellence have served on several economic development-based Centers for Advanced Technology grants.
  • Faculty members serve as mentors on the National Institutes of Health K-awards for both UB and Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

Provide service to communities, the university and professional organizations

  • Faculty members serve or have served on National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs study sections.
  • Several faculty have provided reviews for foreign scientific agencies.
  • Several faculty members serve or have served on local and federally funded Data Safety Monitoring Boards (DSMBs).
  • Faculty members and students are actively involved in the Buffalo-Niagara chapter of the American Statistical Association.
  • Faculty members are editors and associate editors for statistical, biostatistical and biomedical journals.
  • We serve as ad-hoc reviewers for numerous articles each year.
  • We serve on multiple university-based committees.
  • We serve several community organizations, including the American Heart Association.
  • A senior faculty member serves as a consultant to the statistics department of the Radiation Effects Research Foundation in Hiroshima, Japan.