CUNY SPS MS in Data Analytics Student Wins at CCNY’s Graduate Student Research Symposium

New York, NY – May 24, 2015 – Daniel Dittenhafer, a student in the MS in Data Analytics degree program at the CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS), won first prize in the Division of Science and Math at The City College of New York’s (CCNY) 8th Annual Graduate Student Research Symposium.


Dittenhafer’s project uses statistical and visual analysis to investigate the relationship between births and the unemployment rate in the United States between the years of 2007 and 2012. The inspiration for this research topic emerged from a combination of Dittenhafer’s personal and professional interests.

“My initial intrigue into U.S. births derived from my own children in addition to my background in economics. Family is a big part of my life; I’m lucky that I have the ability to pursue a degree in parallel to my home life,” said Dittenhafer.

Even though Dittenhafer found unemployment rates to be a weak predictor of births, he intends to continue his research by delving into the State-level birth rate and unemployment activity during the period of 2003 to 2013.

Dittenhafer, raised in New Jersey and currently living in Satellite Beach, FL, with his wife and three children, has been working in the software development field for nearly 20 years, and currently serves as a lead software engineer at Thales USA, Inc.’s InFlyt Experience business unit.

Dittenhafer further explained that enrolling in the MS in Data Analytics degree program at CUNY SPS afforded him many opportunities, including the CCNY award. “The curriculum has an excellent balance of computer science and math courses with a focus on practical project work. CUNY SPS is a great value being a public institution, and the program benefits from the fact that this modern degree enables a geographically dispersed cohort to collaborate in real time for meetings and coursework,” said Dittenhafer.

The CCNY Graduate Student Symposium is a platform for graduate students to gain recognition for their work by faculty, students, and potential employers. The event raises awareness about the wide range of programs housed at CUNY, and offers students experience in sharing their research findings in a professional, academic setting.

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