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2021 virtual alumni reunion recap

Participants from across the world, who otherwise might not have been able to attend, benefited from the virtual format.
Collage of Zoom participants at MS&E's 2021 virtual alumni reunion event

MS&E's first-ever virtual alumni reunion, held on Saturday, February 20, welcomed more than 300 alumni and friends from around the globe.

"I enjoyed the virtual event, seeing familiar names and faces after a long time and resuming discussions. These virtual events help us to reconnect from anywhere in the world."
- Response from the post-reunion survey

Alumni gathered virtually to network, reminisce, and enjoy a series of short lectures and breakout sessions. The lecture series kicked off with Chair of MS&E, Professor Pamela Hinds, who introduced the theme of the talks, "Data & Decision Making in Uncertain Times."

The talks

The list of speakers included five MS&E faculty. They detailed their work over the past year in a wide range of areas, including COVID-19 hospital capacity calculators, the US opioid epidemic, and the efficacy of antitrust lawsuits.

Development and deployment of mathematical models for operational management of COVID-19

Professor Jose Blanchet, who is also an MS&E alumnus (MS '02, PhD '04), interviewed Prof. Peter Glynn and Adjunct Prof. David Scheinker on their recent research that studied the operational management of COVID-19 using mathematical models and tools to assess data collected at Stanford Hospital in a collaborative effort with the Department of Management Science and Engineering and Stanford hospitals.

Innovation in a time of disruption

What does innovation look like during a time of disruption? The answer varies among organizations and professionals, but creativity plays a key role during critical moments within history, shaping innovation and organizations. Professor Riitta Katila discussed ways to think critically and creatively in pursuing new innovative ways of pushing forward during a time of disruption and shared her research on this topic.

The role of analytics in informing social policy

What should we do about the US opioid epidemic? How can we mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in jails and prisons? Should low-level drug offenders be diverted to drug treatment programs, rather than being incarcerated? Can cell phone mobility data help us determine when and where COVID-19 lockdowns should be implemented? Professor Margaret Brandeau described analytical projects aimed at informing these social policy decisions.

Many thanks to everyone in the MS&E community for making this event a success!

View all lecture videos from the event.