In partnership with:

Women in Data Science

WiDS Orlando is an independent event that is organized by the University of Central Florida as part of the annual WiDS Worldwide conference organized by Stanford University and an estimated 200+ regional events, which feature outstanding women doing outstanding work in the field of data science. All genders are invited to attend WiDS Worldwide conference events.

Calling All Data Enthusiasts!

The UCF Statistics and Data Science Department is pleased to present the
Big Data Analytics Symposium 2024.

This day-long series of speakers and networking opportunities connects students to industry professionals to explore the practical applications of big data and data analytics in the modern marketplace. This event reached its 11th year in 2024 and has become an integral resource for connecting UCF students with employers from companies at the top of their industry.

Thursday, March 14, 2024

UCF Main Campus, Pegasus Ballroom
Register is Closed


9:00 AM – Morning Employer Networking Session

  • Coffee and beverages will be served

9:30 AM – Introductions

10:00 AM – Event Kickoff

  • Keynote Speaker – Google Cloud – Mike Kahn – Head of Customer Engineering

11:00 AM – Speakers 1 – Voloridge

  • Andrew Thomas – Senior Data Analyst and Research Manager
  • Andres Olano – Data Analyst

11:30 AM – Speed-Round Table Breakout Sessions

  • Chat in a small group with company representatives about internships and career paths, meet UCF alumni in the field, and find out about graduate programs in Big Data during three 10-minute speed rounds.

12:00 PM – Lunch Service

  • A complimentary fajita lunch will be served to all registered attendees.

12:30 PM Introduction of Dr. Maggy Haslett-Tomova – Dean, College of Sciences

12:35 PM – Addition Financial Data Analytics Competition Results

  • $3,000 is on the line for 1st place in the 2024 Competition! Learn from this year’s competition winner about the strategy they used to solve the real-world business data problem.

01:30 PM  – Speaker 2 – AFTAC – Jonathan Holton – Branch Chief of Strategic R&D Relationships

02:00 PM – Speakers 3 – Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC)

  • Dawn Frye – Manager of Meter Data Operations for Electric and Water Distribution Operations
  • Justin Kramer – Director of Emerging Technologies and Data Analytics
  • Geraldo Laborda – Director of Digital and Technology

02:30 PM – Intego Group – Donnelle LaDouceur – Director of Operational Excellence

02:40 PM – Women in Data Science Panel Discussion

  • Hear from industry experts and UCF alumni about their data analysis focus, and how this field is shaping both business and society

03:30 PM – Afternoon Employer Networking Reception

  • Refreshments and desserts will be served as we close the day with opportunities to network with industry partners, employers, and guests.
    Sponsored by the College of Business

04:30 PM – End of Event


Who attends?

The Symposium serves as a platform for exploring the application of concepts that UCF students are actively learning in their degree programs and how that knowledge translates to real-world applications. All interested students, alumni and greater UCF community members are invited to attend.

Why attend?

Register to attend throughout the day and hear from local executives, alumni in the field, and student peers presenting on topics including data analytics, machine learning, and blockchain. Learn from local big data experts how topics learned in class translate into the work being done in businesses.

Get your questions answered during live Q&A sessions. How do you find results in the data? What functions in a company does as a data scientist do? How can you best relay those results to clients?

Connect in breakouts and listen to panels with alumni and employers in the field. What skills are employers looking for in the field? Should I get my Masters and Ph.D. in Data Science or Data Analytics?

Cost: Free; RSVP Required

Open-House Format: Attendees are encouraged to come and go throughout the day as their schedule allows.

Employer Tables: Local and international employers will be present to answer questions, discuss internships, and share information about full-time roles in this exciting and ever-growing. The Symposium concludes with a designated “meet-and-greet” networking session for students to connect with company representatives, to learn about specific career paths within each company.


Dawn Frey

Dawn Frye

Manager of Meter Data Operations for Electric and Water Distribution Operations, Orlando Utilities Commission

Dawn Frye is the Manager of Meter Data Operations for Electric and Water Distribution Operations at Orlando Utilities Commission. She has a Masters Degree from Florida Institute of Technology with a concentration of Information Systems. At OUC she leads a team working on day to day operations including the monitoring of 450,000 meters, developing back office automation tools to ensure elite customer service and accurate, on time billing. They have pioneered a vision for OUC to embark on cloud based data analytics platform. They leverage a sophisticated cloud-based architecture to read every meter every day, ensure the meters are operating correctly, and stream-line business processes saving the company hundreds of thousands of dollars a year minimizing unnecessary field work. Dawn also sits on the Florida Snowflake User Group Leadership Committee and is highly engaged in Utility Analytics Institute.

Jonathan Holton

Jonathan Holton

Branch Chief of Strategic R&D Relationships, Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC)

Mr. Jonathan Holton is the Branch Chief of Strategic R&D Relationships at the Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC), Patrick Space Force Base, FL.  AFTAC provides national authorities quality technical measurements to monitor nuclear treaty compliance. He leads a team of scientists and active-duty airmen to oversee the center’s R&D engagements for the purpose of identifying and expanding partnerships, across the US government and academia.  He also acts as the Executive Officer of a Naval Reserve Unit for submarine operations, based out of Kings Bay, Georgia.

When Mr. Holton graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, he commissioned directly into the United States Navy as a Submarine Officer, serving onboard the USS Wyoming (SSBN-742) and serving overseas in the Middle East.  He joined AFTAC as a civilian after ten years in the Naval Service, where he supported R&D engagement efforts through his current position.

Mike Kahn

Mike Kahn

Head of Customer Engineering, Google Cloud

Mike Kahn is an engineering leader with over 15 years of experience in cloud and data services. He is currently the Head of Customer Engineering at Google Cloud, where he leads a team of engineers who help organizations adopt and leverage Google Cloud technologies. Mike is also an author and speaker, and he is passionate about sharing his knowledge with others.

Mike has a strong track record of success in helping organizations achieve their business goals through technology. He is a highly skilled technical expert with a deep understanding of cloud computing and data engineering. Mike is also a strong communicator and collaborator, and he is able to build relationships with people at all levels of an organization.

For more information or to reach Mike

Justin Kramer

Justin Kramer

Director of Emerging Technologies & Data Analytics, Orlando Utilities Commission

Justin Kramer is the Director of Emerging Technologies and Data Analytics for the Orlando Utilities Commission. He has a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering with a focus on Sustainable Energy Engineering from Florida State University. While at FSU, he was the project manager for the Energy and Sustainability Center and has experience in hydrogen technologies, building efficiency, solar thermal energy, electric vehicles, microgrids and PV technologies. With his professional engineering license, he has designed and commissioned buildings all over the world but prefers work in the Caribbean. At OUC he leads a team of analysts and engineers, working on projects including Vehicle-to-Grid demonstrations, Hydrogen technologies, system and forecast modeling and other emerging technologies and analytics. His current focus is to develop the insights and tools required to transition OUC into the Utility of the Future.

Gerardo Laborda

Gerardo Laborda

Director of Digital and Technology, Orlando Utilities Commission

Gerardo Laborda is a Director of Digital and Technology for the Orlando Utilities Commission. He holds a Degree in Software Engineering and has over 30 years of experience across multiple industries and countries.

At OUC he is responsible for the IT Infrastructure, Operations, and Cybersecurity; overseeing several teams supporting OUC’s business units in their technical needs covering network, servers, clients, databases, cloud infrastructure, integration, content management and cybersecurity. His current focus areas are, harden OUCs cybersecurity posture, expand the data infrastructure, re-establish the enterprise architecture practice, and transform day to day operations by leveraging OUC’s hybrid cloud.

Sital Nayee

Sital Nayee

Systems Analytics, Addition Financial Credit Union

Sital Nayee is an accomplished professional in the Financial Services sector, with a decade-long tenure in the Credit Union Financial Services Industry since 2010, where he has significantly contributed across multiple domains such as Branch Operations, Lending, Technology, and Data Analysis. His extensive hands-on experience with Financial Institutions is complemented by a profound passion for data science, a field in which he has not only earned his Bachelor of Science Degree but is also advancing towards a master’s degree. Sital’s academic pursuits in Data Science are driven by a keen interest in harnessing analytical tools and methodologies to solve complex financial problems, thereby enhancing operational efficiency and strategic decision-making within the banking sector. Beyond his professional and academic accomplishments, Sital’s enthusiasm for data science extends into personal projects and continuous learning endeavors. He actively engages in self-directed projects that explore innovative data modeling techniques, and frequently attends workshops and seminars to stay abreast of the latest trends and technologies in the field. His dedication to mastering the art and science of data analysis underscores a deep-seated belief in the transformative power of data to not only predict future trends but also to create actionable insights that drive progress and efficiency in the financial industry. Whenever Sital takes a break from analyzing data for strategic decision-making, he indulges in his passion for travel, having explored 23 diverse countries alongside his family.

In the coming weeks, specifically around the first week of April, Sital is set to embrace fatherhood with the arrival of a newborn.

Andres Olano

Andres Olano

Data Analyst, Voloridge Investment Management

Andres Olano is a proficient Data Analyst with over four years of dedicated service at Voloridge Investment Management. Graduating with a degree in Computer Science from the University of Central Florida (UCF), Andres brings a strong academic foundation and a passion for data-driven insights to his role. Through his meticulous approach and attention to detail, Andres ensures the smooth flow of crucial data that drives informed decision-making processes within the organization.

Andrew Thomas

Andrew Thomas

Senior Data Analyst & Research Manager, Voloridge Investment Management

Andrew Thomas is a seasoned Senior Data Analyst and Research Manager at Voloridge Investment Management, where he has been a pivotal member of the team for over six years. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for data-driven insights, Andrew plays a crucial role in curating and delivering diverse datasets to researchers across multiple teams and strategies. Andrew’s academic background includes a degree in Mathematics from the University of Central Florida (UCF). This foundation has equipped him with a strong analytical skill set, enabling him to approach complex data challenges with confidence and precision.

Special Thanks To Our 2024 Sponsors:

Pegasus Sponsors

Addition Financial Logo
AFTAC Jobs Logo
Google Cloud and Carasoft logos
OUC Logo
Voloridge logo

Gold Sponsor

Intego Clinical Logo

Black Sponsor

The swedish flag on a blue background.
The hilton logo on a white background.
Playfair Data - Event Sponsor

Networking Table Sponsors

Amazon Web Services Logo

Contact Dorothy Solis to learn more about sponsorship and scholarship opportunities for the 2024 Big Data Analytics Symposium.