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National Sports Analytics Club Program coming this fall to Green Bay

Published: Sep. 5, 2021 at 2:25 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 5, 2021 at 6:04 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Starting this fall, the National Sports Analytics Club Program (SACP) will be offered in Green Bay Area Public Schools. A collaboration between the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Green Bay East High School and the Green Bay Packers will launch the inaugural SACP after-school club in the area.

The goal of the project-based learning system is to promote collaboration of secondary and higher education with industry changemakers. It’s a hands-on way for students to learn the “nuts and bolts” of data research and analysis.

The organization has already established about 30 scholastic clubs with over 300 members across the country since their founding in 2017. They approved an additional 75 clubs for the 2020-2021 school. How statistics can play a role in their everyday lives will hopefully be pondered by the students of Green Bay East High School given the chance to join the SACP ranks.

“I think it kind of answers the question, when the heck am I ever going to use this?” Will Garay, a math teacher at Green Bay East High School and director of the club’s upcoming operations, said. “When this opportunity presented itself to me, it became exciting because I like statistics, I like sports, and to show these kids how data can actually be applied in the real world I think makes it a fantastic opportunity.“

The initiative to add more SACP clubs in Wisconsin was announced last week on August 19. Garay believes there is currently only one other SACP club in the state, in Milwaukee. UW-Green Bay is sponsoring the local Green Bay club’s founding. There is no limit on the number of students who can join.

SACP was created in 2017 to reduce barriers for underrepresented young women, African American, and Latinx youth in advanced STEM degrees.

“Data scientists are mostly a uniform group of people,” Prof. Gaurav Bansal, UW-Green Bay’s Frederick E. Baer Professor in Business and professor of MIS/Statistics at the University’s Austin E. Cofrin School of Business who will support the club in growing students’ data analytic skills and programming techniques, shared. “When these automated decision making systems impact everyone in our society, it is very much imperative that everybody from our society should be part of our team of data scientists. I thought, this is a great project to give me the chance to develop students from those sections of society that have not been traditionally presented as a traditional data scientist.”

This fall, students will potentially get the chance to work on a project analyzing the fan experience at Lambeau Field which may be presented to the Green Bay Packers for them to use.

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