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Monday, May 20, 2024

Faculty approve the creation of statistics major

Warner Hall (pictured) is home to the Math Department.
Warner Hall (pictured) is home to the Math Department.

The Mathematics Department, soon to be called the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, will now be home to a new statistics major. On Friday, April 7, Middlebury faculty voted to approve the new major with a vote of 68 to 26. The faculty discussed the proposal for over an hour before the vote.

Psychology Professor Mike Dash is on the Educational Affairs Committee (EAC) and has been working closely with the Mathematics Department on their proposal of the new major ahead of the faculty vote. The faculty vote was supposed to take place in February but was delayed until April to allow the EAC to write up a formal recommendation and the Mathematics Department to revise their proposal based on feedback they receive from the EAC.

“Students should be able to graduate with a major in statistics starting next academic year,” Dash said.

Alex Lyford is one of the mathematics professors who worked on the proposal.

“Students interested in majoring in statistics or wanting to learn more about our statistics and data science offerings can reach out to any of our statisticians — Professors Lyford, Tang, Malcolm-White or Peterson,” Lyford said on behalf of the whole department.

“We hope that this major and the courses within it allow students at Middlebury to explore how data, probabilistic thinking and mathematics can help us solve some of the world's most challenging and interesting problems,” Lyford said.

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flowchart of the courses required for the newly approved statistics major

Lily Jones

Lily Jones ’23 is an online editor and senior writer.

She previously served as a Senior News Writer and SGA Correspondent.

Jones is double majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. She  also is an intern for the Rohatyn Center for Global Affairs and on the  ultimate frisbee team.