DataFest 2017

What is the ASA Datafest™?

The American Statistical Association (ASA) DataFest™ is a celebration of data in which student teams work around the clock to find and share meaning in a large, rich, and complex dataset.

DataFest was founded at UCLA in 2011 when 30 students gathered for 48 intense hours to help fight crime through an analysis of every arrest record of the last 5 years as provided by Lt. Thomas Zak of the Los Angeles Police Department. ASA DataFest is now sponsored by the American Statistical Association and is hosted by several of the most prestigious colleges and universities around the country and involves over 500 students. In 2014, teams came from UCLA, Pomona College, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, UC Riverside, University of Southern California, Duke, the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State, Emory, Princeton, Dartmouth, Smith, Hampshire, Amherst, Mt. Holyoke and the University of Massachusetts.

Penn State University is joining this event for the third time!

For more information, see the ASA’s Datafest™ page and the following articles about ASA DataFest:

Who may participate?

ASA Datafest at Penn State University is open to all undergraduate students and Master’s students at Penn State University, main campus or branch campuses.

There is no fee to participate.

Students compete in teams of 2 to 5.  You may form your own team prior to the event, or you may ask to be placed on a team.  We encourage you to form teams of individuals from different disciplines because you will benefit from having team members of diverse backgrounds and skills.


Each individual participating in Datafest must submit a registration.  If you form your own team, each member of your team must register separately and include the team name on the form.  If you have not formed a team, you will have the chance on the registration form to request placement onto a team.  Registration will close Friday, March 24th at 4:00 PM


This event will (tentatively) start at 5:00 pm on Friday, March 31, 2017, and end by 5:00 pm on Sunday, April 2, 2017.
See the full schedule at:  DataFest 2017 Schedule 

Mentors will be available throughout the weekend to help you as you work through the problem.  Meals and snacks are provided, and following us using #datafestPSU for the chance to win prizes!

Note that you do NOT need to be present the entire weekend to participate; you may come and go as you please, but we ask that you be there for event kick-off on Friday and for the presentations and award ceremony on Sunday (events with an asterisk, *)

All events will take place on University Park Campus.

Judging and Prizes

Each team must present a short 3-minute presentation summarizing their findings to a panel of judges comprised of faculty and professionals from a variety of fields. Prizes are TBD. Presentations are judged based on creativity, insight, visualization, and communication.

First Place

Psy-lent But Deadly
Christine Suhr
Jacob Ryan
James Andrew Higgins
Jordan Reedy
Yongyang Chen

Sponsors and Contributors

Thank you to our sponsors and contributors! We could not have done this without you.

ASA Google RStudio DataCamp

Planning Committee
David Hunter
Maggie Niu
Debmalya Nandy
Ethan Fang
Le Bao
Alex Zhao
Sayali Phadke
Matt Beckman
Claire Kelling
Kathy Smith
Whitney Zimmerman

Follow us on Twitter @PSUDatafest and Like us on Facebook /PSUDatafest.