Georgia Tech Students Invited to JUMP into STEM Finals

JUMP into STEM Students

Posted March 26, 2019

Two interdisciplinary teams of Georgia Tech undergraduates have been invited to compete in the JUMP into STEM final event for the chance to intern with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) or the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The team, advised by School of Public Policy Assistant Professor and Class of 1969 Teaching Fellow Omar Asensio, comprised students from Public Policy, Economics, International Affairs, and Computer Science.

Asensio advised the students throughout the competition as a key component of his Data Science and Public Policy course (PUBP 4803). 

The JUMP into STEM challenge, launched by ORNL in 2015 and funded by the Department of Energy’s Building Technologies Office, is organized into a series of three rounds with different topics related to this year’s theme, Smart/Connected Solutions for Building Energy Performance. 

Asensio’s students were organized into two teams, both of which submitted research proposals for the Round 1 topic, entitled “Connecting the Right Data at the Right Time to Improve Residential Building Performance.” Both teams submitted research designs with the aim of identifying and designing approaches to influence homeowner decisions to optimize their energy use.

The student teams, their associated majors, and their proposal titles are listed below:

  • Team 1: Cade Lawson (Economics), Taylor Strickland (Public Policy), Rachel Wexler (Public Policy)
    • “Behavioral Incentives on Older Adults to Reduce Energy Consumption: A Randomized Encouragement Design”
  • Team 2: Varun Gupta (Computer Science), McKenzie Rhone (Economics and International Affairs), Sarah Tinsley (Economics), Roderick Tyler (Economics)
    • “Home Energy Score Interactive Dashboard”

“I am extremely honored to have the opportunity to represent Georgia Tech and the School of Economics at the JUMP into STEM finalist weekend,” said economics major Sarah Tinsley. “Tech offers a very unique liberal arts program that has given me a greater understanding of and appreciation for the fascinating intersection of social science and technology, along with a solid foundation in math and science.”

The JUMP into STEM judges recently announced that Team 1 was the winner of Round 1 and Team 2 was a finalist in Round 1. Both teams, represented by Tinsley and Lawson, will present their revised research proposals at the final competition in Colden, Colorado on April 12 - 14. Tinsley and Lawson will be awarded with the ORNL or NPEL internships if selected as winners.

“I think that the significance of our selection to represent School of Economics at a national level is that it reinforces the importance of data-driven social science research to the field,” Lawson said.

“The intertwining of traditional economic theory and social science techniques with newer, more modern computing, and data analysis techniques is a huge part of what makes Economics at Georgia Tech unique from other programs across the country, and our selection as finalists for this competition really emphasizes that Georgia Tech has made great decisions in regards to the types of skills that students come out of the school equipped with.”

Contact For More Information

Rebecca Keane
Director of Communications