As a member of the Biostatistics alumni family, you are vitally important to the quality of our programs and to the success of our graduates. Alumni regularly visit the department, serve as guest lecturers or adjunct instructors on timely topics, and collaborate with faculty on research projects. They often serve as summer internship hosts and turn to us when recruiting permanent professional employees.

Please take a moment to fill out our alumni survey so we can stay in touch with you and learn how you would like to remain connected with the department.

Alumni Careers

The following are examples of the types of careers UM Biostatistics graduates have pursued. You can find out more information about careers in Biostatistics and other SPH departments by visiting the SPH Career Services Page.

Rodney L. Dunn graduated from the UM Biostatistics Department with his M.S. in 1996. Prior to that, he had received his B.A. in Statistics from Western Michigan in 1994. Upon graduating, he worked at Medstat Group as a statistician and project manager, mainly in the field of health economics. His job duties ranged from designing projects, performing analyses, meeting with clients to design projects and to present project results, preparing and giving talks at national and international conferences, and producing manuscripts for peer-reviewed journals. In 1998, he joined the Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Michigan. He currently performs most tasks available to a statistician from the start of a project to completion. His duties include meeting with investigators to help them decide how to frame a research project; timing of the study; patient population; number of patients; measured endpoints; writing the statistical methods section of a study protocol; ensuring proper collection of data; analyzing the data; meeting with the investigator to discuss the results and help in interpretation; and finally, working on preparing presentations and manuscripts based on the study results.

Elizabeth R. HauserElizabeth R. Hauser graduated from the Biostatistics Department with her Ph.D. in 1998. Dr. Hauser is a statistical geneticist with experience in the development and application of methods for the analysis of affected sibling pair data in studies of complex genetic disorders. After graduation she took a job as an Assistant Research Professor in the Center for Human Genetics and Section of Medical Genetics, at Duke University Medical Center. She collaborates with other investigators from a variety of departments at Duke University, as well as members of the research teams at other institutions, including international groups. Beth teaches a course in statistical genetics as well as gives occasional lectures in other courses. She works with students, post-doctoral fellows and medical residents. Her position involves directing projects to identify genes for common human diseases. This includes writing proposals for funding research projects, directing and organizing the research team, and writing papers describing the results of the research. The interplay between methods development and applied research is one of the most exciting aspects of her job. Recent gene mapping projects include a study of families with early onset-coronary disease, a cohort study of patients from a cardiac catheterization lab, and a study of genes for heart failure identified in a mouse model of heart failure.

Keith McCullough graduated from the Biostatistics Department with his M.S. in 1998 having previously earned his B.S. in applied mathematics from the University of Michigan. Keith currently works at URREA as a biostatistician. He has conducted analyses of medical data, primarily using the DOPPS (Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study) and the SRTR (Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients) databases, although he has occasionally used other sources such as the USRDS (United States Renal Data Survey) and HCFA (Health Care Finance Administration – now called CMS, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Studies) data files. He has worked with several different models (generalized linear, mixed, proportional hazards, simulation, etc.) describing the interrelationships between patient characteristics, patterns of care, and patient outcomes (including survival time, quality of life, transplantation rates, organ acceptance rates, hospitalization, and vascular access failure). He has also worked on proposals and helped to implement the resulting studies, including creating a sampling plan, performing power analyses, dealing with missing data, and analyzing and reporting the results.

Hernando OmbaoHernando Ombao graduated from the Biostatistics Department in 1999 with his Ph.D. Immediately following, he joined the University of Pittsburgh as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics and Department of Psychiatry. At Pittsburgh, he collaborates with scientists who study the relationship between sleep, aging, and depression. He is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics and the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He advises two PhD students. One is working on classification and discrimination in time series and the other is working on times series models for studying effective connectivity between areas of the brain. The major focus of Dr. Ombao’s current research is the development of time series methods that is recorded from multiple subjects. He uses state-space models and frequency domain methods as his main tools.

Wei LiangWei Liang earned her M.D. in China before beginning her academic career in the U.S. Her interest in biomedical study design and data analysis brought her to the UM Biostatistics Department where she graduated with her M.S. in 2003. She is currently working for PPD (Pharmaceutical Product Development), a leading global provider of discovery and development services and products for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. She provides statistical support for clinical trial data analysis and works closely with clients to aid in database management, clinical/statistical programming, medical writing, and quality review.

Daowen Zhang obtained his Ph.D. from the University Michigan Biostatistics Department in 1997. While studying here, he worked with Dr. Xihong Lin and Dr. Jonathan Raz. He was employed as a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Epidemilogy from 1996 to 1998. Since then, he has been working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics at North Carolina State University. His current research interests include clinical trials, correlated categorical data, epidemiology, estimating equations, genetics, longitudinal data, missing data, mixed effect models, and semiparametric and nonparametric regressions.

Support the Future of Biostatistics


Biostatistics faculty featured on list of most cited researchers

Many of our alumni found the U-M Biostatistics Department to be a place of great personal and academic growth during their studies here. Now that you’ve joined this large and growing group of Biostatistics alumni, we invite you to continue your association with our department. As one aspect of this, we hope that you will consider providing support for future Biostatisticians. We have two primary funds that contribute to the development of our program for our current and future students. By donating to the Cornell Scholarship Fund, you are helping future students reach their educational goals through the development of a stronger scholarship program. In addition, every donation to the Cornell Scholarship Fund is matched dollar for dollar. If you give to the Biostatistics Student Development Fund, you will be providing the financial backing for student awards and other student support, upgrades to computer labs, and development of our alumni programs.

If you are interested in making a contribution, you can contact the School of Public Health’s Development Office by phone at 734-764-8093 or by e-mail at You can also donate online.