In AMSI scholarship recipient
AMSI grant recipient profile: Lauren Elborough

Lauren Elborough

The University of Adelaide

I am beginning my Honours degree this year at the University of Adelaide, after completing my Bachelor in Mathematical Sciences (Advanced) last year. I will be studying statistics courses and researching the use of Neural Networks (NN) for DNA sequencing, and how explainable AI can be applied to make the use of the technology more transparent. I am continuing with more education to continue studying and see whether continuing in research is where I see myself in the future.

Can you give me a quick rundown about the type of mathematics you are studying and its potential impacts for the broader community?

I am researching the use of Neural Networks (NN) for DNA sequencing, and how explainable AI can be applied to make the use of the technology more transparent. This DNA recognition technology has great impacts in criminal cases.

How did you get into mathematics/statistics/data science? Was there someone or something that inspired you to this field?

I always enjoyed my mathematics subjects at school growing up, and it was the teachers who supported me through my schooling and my lecturers at university who have inspired me to continue pursuing mathematics.

You received a Travel Grant to attend AMSI Summer School 2023. How important was this in terms of your ability to attend, fully participate in the program and meet others studying in similar fields?

I am extremely grateful for the travel grant as it allowed me to attend the Summer School in person. After completing majority of my Undergraduate degree online / in hybrid mode, it was truly beneficial to meet in person and connect with lecturers and peers.

What was the most valuable part of the program for you?

In terms of my research, I now have greater coding abilities and the skills to work in a high-intensity setting. Overall, the most valuable part was getting to meet new students and lecturers, learn from them and participate in the social activities.

In the long-term, what do you think are the benefits of having attended Summer School?

The main benefit is having met people from all over the country who are all studying new and exciting things. It was beneficial getting to hear about others’ research and how it related back to my own. Having attended Summer School also means that I have fulfilled some of the course work requirements for my degree, meaning that I can focus more on my research during the year.

Summer School included a special Careers Day program which aims to help give students an idea of the kinds of career paths available to maths graduates in industry and private sector research areas. Were you previously aware of the types of industry opportunities available to mathematical science graduates?

After my degree, I plan to work in industry. The Careers Day was really helpful in understanding where my degree and skillset can take me, compared with previous events that I have attended which primarily catered to engineering students. I feel much better equipped to search for careers after attending.

What advice would you give to someone who is considering applying for Summer School in 2024? Should they apply and why?

Definitely try to attend in person if possible and participate in the social activities!

Where do you want the mathematical sciences to take you? Where do you see yourself in five, ten years’ time?

I see myself working in the industry, in a data science or statistical consulting role, and possibly teaching later in the future.