The Institute of Statistics (INSTAT) hosted the 24th National Student-Faculty Conference on the Statistical Sciences (SFCon) on October 16, 2023, attracting over 200 statistics students and faculty from across the country. With the theme, “Statistics Toward Achieving Economic and Social Transformation” the SFCon explored the potential of statistics as a tool for driving positive change.
The opening remarks by Chancellor Jose V. Camacho, Jr., PhD and CAS Dean Maribel L. Dionisio-Sese, DSc. set the conference for a day of intellectual discourse. The plenary sessions provided diverse perspectives on the role of statistics in modern society. Ms. Irene Angela V. Cuya, Supervising Economic Development Specialist from the National Economic and Development Authority, highlighted the importance of data-driven policymaking, while Ms. Michelle Alarcon, President of Analytics & Artificial Intelligence Association of the Philippines (AAP) and Z-Lift Solutions, Inc. discussed the transformative power of statistics in industries adapting to artificial intelligence.
The afternoon saw eight parallel sessions delve into various fields, including health, economics, agriculture, environment, technology, governance, and social development. A total of 29 student research papers were presented, showcasing the breadth and depth of applications for statistics across different disciplines.
Engr. Xavier Louis J. Bilon, Director for Research from the UP Diliman School of Statistics, commended the high quality of student research and faculty contributions. Awards were subsequently presented for the best student papers. The third place for the Best Student Paper Award was given to Aeram Clester A. Albo, Lance R. Fernando, and Catherine Joy A. Villaflor of the De La Salle University for their paper entitled “Spatiotemporal Analysis of Actual Monthly Prices for Milkfish, Round Scad, and Tilapia in Philippine Provinces from May 2020 to December 2022.” The second place was given to Francis Gian M. Yutuc from INSTAT, UP Los Baños for his paper entitled “Modeling the Disaster Preparedness of Households in the Philippines”. Finally, Angelica Joie L. Zamoranos from INSTAT, UP Los Baños bagged the Best Student Paper Award for her paper entitled “Estimation of the Total Number of Filipino Women who Underwent HIV Testing among Provinces and NCR Districts in the Philippines”.
The closing remarks by Associate Professor and Director Liza N. Comia, PhD. emphasized the significance of SFCon as a platform for knowledge exchange and collaboration within the statistical sciences community. The conference successfully fostered a vibrant environment for discussing the multifaceted role of statistics in driving economic and social transformation.
By bringing together students, faculty, and industry leaders, the 24th SFCon served as a valuable forum for advancing the discourse on the potential of statistics as a catalyst for positive change. The event underscored the growing recognition of statistics as a crucial tool for informing decision-making and ultimately building a more prosperous and equitable society.
~ Jeremiah R. Ventura and Leonard Allan F. Almero