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Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
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Students Learn Real-World Uses of Data Science at SciHigh Workshop

On January 31st, NUGoKidney’s SciHigh Program hosted the junior class from Holy Trinity High School for “Data IRL: Thinking Big and Improving Health” - a workshop on real-world uses of data and computing in medicine and health research.

The SciHigh Program provides students with hands-on research experiences to build skills and confidence to achieve success in science and kidney research.


Over 70 students participated in the workshop, which aimed to spark students’ interest in science; think hard about the importance of data capture and analysis; and learn about careers in health and health research.

Students learned from scientists from the Feinberg School of Medicine and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago about their research career paths and how they are using data and computing to learn about and improve health. Topics covered in the workshop included different types of data and data collection; why numbers are important to public health outcomes; data quality and security; machine learning in medicine; and trends in human-computer interaction.

Students said it was an excellent learning experience, and they enjoyed the real-life applications and examples provided by the presenters.

One student noted, “I liked how a lot of the information given to us related to us in some way, making it easier to connect with and comprehend what was presented to us.”

Most of the students entered the workshop shop with little to no exposure to data science. After completing the day, some students already expressed interest in learning more about it and studying data science in the future!


We need your minds. We need your creativity to solve problems. There are problems people don’t even know exist because they don’t live it. There are problems within your communities and your lives that you can give voice and you can help shine a light on.”

Nia Heard-Garris, MD, MSc  on using research as a tool to change the world

Here is what some students had to say about the workshop:

  • “I really liked Daniel Schneider's explanation of data science. I am now considering a career in data science.”
  • “I liked the presentations about the ICUs as well as the presentation about how doctors are using VR to learn how to operate on people.”
  • “I really enjoyed the presentations because I learned some new things about the medical world that I didn't know before.”

The workshop closed out with tours of the Simpson Querrey Biomedical Research Center, pizza, and networking with other researchers and staff from NUGoKidney, Northwestern Medicine, and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago.

For more information about SciHigh and NUGoKidney’s other enrichment and training opportunities, please visit our nephrohub-U page or email us at

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