Shaping the Future of South Florida Business

By Jennifer Palma Sanchez

Shaping the Future of South Florida Business

By Jennifer Palma Sanchez
The second annual Big Data Conference and Workshop hosted by UM Center for Computational Science encouraged business leaders, including UM alumni, to dive into big data.

For years, global companies like Airbnb, MasterCard and Fitbit have used “big data” to better understand the dynamic landscape of business and consumer engagement. In South Florida, the trending topic of big data continues to push business leaders toward the incorporation and understanding of advanced computing and algorithms to effectively improve current functionality and growth.

At the University of Miami’s Center for Computational Science (UM CCS), experts are constantly engaged with data scientists around the world to remain at the forefront of the rapidly changing and profoundly impactful use of data as an advantage over their competitors.

In addition to conducting research, CCS partners with local business leaders, including UM alumni, to dive into the world of big data. Recently, as part of the second annual CCS Big Data Conference and Workshop, held at the UM Robert and Judi Prokop Newman Alumni Center, Emily Hill, director of strategy and analytics at VITAS Healthcare and a 2014 MBA graduate of the School of Business Administration, had an opportunity to expand upon her knowledge of big data’s influence over the healthcare sector. Like Hill, many attendees are not computer scientists, but instead understand the importance and opportunity that big data can bring to their work. Hill answered a few questions about her experience at the conference:

UM News: How do you anticipate the use of big data will impact the future of your work in the healthcare industry?

Emily Hill: The future of data analytics within the healthcare industry is bright. While there is much work to be done, there are great opportunities to be realized in patient care, operations and traditional support services.

UM News: What was your biggest take-away from the conference?

Hill: I do not have a traditional data science background so the opportunity to participate in the Big Data Conference and Workshop allowed me to hear valuable insights from business leaders and learn other ways to leverage data in my role. Additionally, I work with a team of data scientists and engineers, so learning more about the technical components of their work allows me to more readily collaborate with them. 

UM News: As an alumna of the University and business leader in South Florida, what is the value of having CCS as a resource?

Hill: The Center and its resources provide opportunities to connect with individuals working in similar fields and the ability to participate in events like the Big Data Conference.

The UM CCS Big Data Conference and Workshop is an annual event that will continue to expand upon and incorporate the use of big data in South Florida. For more information on the Center for Computational Science, visit