Community Data Clinic

Rojas-Alvarez receives NCSA Fiddler Innovation Graduate Fellowship

URBANA, IL. Jorge Rojas-Alvarez received the NCSA Fiddler Innovation Graduate Student Fellowship Award. This distinction highlights achievements which step outside the boundaries to pursue innovation and research. In this case, NCSA awards Rojas-Alvarez’s leadership in the Champaign County Resources community project.

“I work with the potential of data to promote access to human services for communities. Our team analyzes and designs how communities build resilience strategies to overcome crises based on data or create their own community resources. For example, we research how people search financial stress relief, find temporary shelters, or mental health services.” Rojas-Alvarez explained.

This project shows that Champaign County requires information services that respect diversity, promote the accuracy of information, and strengthen the capacities of local government agencies. Thanks to the support of NCSA Fiddler Innovation program and the Students Pushing INnovation (SPIN), the project moved from a web prototype to an online service with over 40 active service providers.

At the award ceremony, Rojas-Alvarez also explained that “in the Community data clinic we work with communities because of the social impact of our work, to challenge our methods, and push forward our data build capacity. We envision how to incorporate a more populations into the prosperity produced by a better education, jobs, mental and physical health, and include them in the great global challenges of our time. We strongly think that NCSA Fiddler Innovation program helps us to make it possible.”

Fiddler Innovation Fellows are dedicated to impacting and improving the world around faculty and students. Fiddler awardees leverage collaboration and technology to connect science, art, humanities, engineering, education and research with creative expression to forge innovative solutions for real challenges.