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Heidi Yang joined OrACORe in the winter of 2015. As a senior statistician at OrACORe Heidi has performed data analyses for an array of OrACORe studies from AVika, STARs, OAPol, to B-Well, TeMPO, MeTeOR, as well as specialty Pride Projects of department Orthopaedic Surgeons. From studying economics in Shanghai to pursuing her master’s degree in biostatistics at Boston University, she has still made the time to travel the globe, meet new people, and explore different cultures around the world.

The core of Heidi’s love for statistics is clearly visible when she expressed that, “The beauty of the numbers and the data are fascinating and tell us the stories that we would otherwise not be able to learn.”

A photo of Heidi at her saxophone recital. Photo courtesy of Heidi Yang.

The Road to OrACORe

Heidi’s road to a career in biostatics was not linear. Heidi received her undergraduate degree in Economics at the Shanghai Jiaotong University in 2008. From there, she traveled to the United States to seek her master’s degree in economics at the Georgia Institute of Technology. During this time Heidi took part in an internship in healthcare consulting to further her education and to be exposed to potential career opportunities. Heidi has always been interested in numbers and instead, this opportunity allowed her to gain exposure to both biostatistics and epidemiology simultaneously. This experience inspired Heidi to make the pivotal decision to pursue a Master’s in Public Health in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from Boston University.

A Bridging of Interests

Heidi believes that the support OrACORe has given her to accommodate work and family life has been fundamental in allowing her to cultivate many different hobbies outside of the office. Her main interests include working out and taking music lessons. Heidi currently plays the piano and guitar but is adding to her list by taking saxophone lessons (See picture below!). At home, she has even translated her love for music into teaching her children to play piano, which she says has helped her maintain balance in her work-family life. Heidi’s three children are her biggest inspiration. Heidi’s greatest piece of advice for maintaining a strong work-life balance is to never hesitate to ask for help if she feels she has too much on her plate. She believes that by asking for help she is able to produce her best work due to the strong support system she has found among her colleagues at OrACORe.

A photo of Heidi practicing guitar. Photo courtesy of Heidi Yang.

A Path Forward 

When asked about providing advice for aspiring biostatistics students, Heidi stresses the importance of remembering that the data themselves are karma. She says “If you are not careful and detail-orientated enough it will eventually show in one of the steps that you are managing. In your daily job try to be as careful and detail-oriented as you can!”. This is what drew Heidi to statistics in the first place and allowed her to develop a life-long passion for the management and cultivation of data.

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