Citadel DataOpen 2018


80 of the brightest students in mathematics, engineering and STEM from the Southern California region gathered to compete in an annual data science competition sponsored by Citadel and Correlation One. Attendance was selective, by invitiation only, and saw over 400 applicants in 2018.

The task was, given a brief background synopsis, an open ended prompt, and a prepared dataset, to formulate an interesting and impactful hypothesis, and carry out a data driven analysis, culminating in a report describing the line of investigation, the techniques used, and the conclusions drawn.

My team and I analyzed the correlation between increasing nitrate levels in key counties within the U.S. with the rainfall patterns in these regions. We found that a positive correlation existed between the amount of rainfall and the nitrate levels in drinking water, both showing a steady increase year-over-year. This finding lead us to conclude that, if left unchecked, temperature increases due to global warming will continue to increase rainfall in these regions, leading to more runoff from agricultural zones, carrying greater amounts of fertilizer (nitratres) into our freshwater sources.

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