Sofía Villar was awarded a University of Cambridge Career Support Award so that her children could travel with her to attend the Joint Statistical Meeting (JSM) 2023 in Toronto.
The Career Support Fund (CSF) is a short-term fund that is designed to support employees of University of Cambridge who have caring responsibilities or other factors, such as illness, that have impacted career progression or opportunities.
Sofía, MRC Investigator at the MRC Biostatistics Unit, received £2,500 so that she could attend and speak at the Joint Statistical Meeting 2023 and also care for her children. The funds enabled the flight and accommodation costs for her children to be paid for. During the meeting, Sofía gave a talk on a invited session titled “Statistical Inference Focused Reinforcement Learning and Adaptive Experiments”, was a discussant at another session titled “Integrating Algorithms and Analysis for Adaptively Randomized Experiments”, provided support to her team members also presenting at the meeting, and networked with statisticians from across the world. It was an invaluable experience which would not have been possible without the funds she received to be able to take her children with her.
This is a fantastic scheme which minimises the impact of factors including (but not limited to) caring for children or family members can have on career opportunities.
“I am deeply grateful for the support this scheme provided me to be able to attend JSM 2023 in Toronto. It was essential for me to be able to accept the invitations to speak as well as to be able to meet with so many well known statisticians in my field. For my children, it was a unique opportunity to visit a new country, to attend daycare with other children during the conference and to meet some of my colleagues as well.”Sofía Villar, MRC Investigator