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Alumni Spotlight: Dr. Md Asif Rahman, Computing PhD Alumnus, Data Science emphasis

Congratulations to Dr. Md Asif Rahman who graduated from the PhD in Computing program in Fall 2023. We connected with Asif to learn more about his new job and how he is putting his doctoral degree to work.

Dr. Md Asif Rahman photo

Computing PhD: Why did you choose to study at Boise State University?
Rahman: Boise State University is well-known for its STEM programs, strong research, and competitive student supports in areas like engineering and computer science. These triggered my intention to pursue higher study at the Boise State University.

Computing PhD: Please share with us about the job you’ve landed!
Rahman: Data Analytics Specialist, Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS), Commonwealth of Virginia, Richmond, VA. The Data Analytics Specialist is tasked with assisting in the data collection, extraction, cleaning, manipulation, management, and presentation of data originating from the Office of Forensic Services grant funded programs, the DBHDS Data Warehouse, other DBHDS source systems, and any associated external data sources. Specifically, I need to assist the Office of Forensic Services in identifying trends, patterns, issues, incidents and outcomes of services for individuals with mental illness, substance use disorders, intellectual and developmental disabilities involved in the criminal justice system. I support the creation of data analyses and visualizations to bolster reports and/or presentations using a broad range of software applications and I need to further support the work by communicating and collaborating directly with subject matter experts. I also support the data collection and management needs of the Office of Forensic Services through development of new data collection tools or applications, including establishing technical guidelines, writing technical handbooks and the maintenance of records associated with any data collection processes or applications.

Computing PhD: How did your Computing doctoral studies prepare you for this position?
Rahman: This position requires knowledge of best practices for collecting, analyzing, documenting, interpreting, and presenting data as well as knowledge of database language, programming languages, and machine learning models. Knowledge of application design and programming principles are necessary to ensure smooth deployment and post-deployment modifications to new applications. The Boise State Engineering, Mathematics, and Data Science courses trained me to be successful in this challenging position. The research I conducted during my PhD equipped me to tackle these challenges by fostering critical and creative thinking skills.

Computing PhD: What interests or excites you most about the work you will be doing in your new role?
Rahman: Dealing with the data of the U.S. Criminal Justice system.

Computing PhD: Would you like to mention any individuals who have been helpful or supportive of your professional growth?
Rahman: I’m incredibly thankful to my wonderful wife, Nayma Meem, for her unwavering belief in me and her constant support and motivation. I am grateful to my parents for their support and motivation for my higher studies.

Computing PhD: What are the most impactful or memorable things you have learned throughout your time in the Computing PhD program that will influence your work experience?
Dealing with the worst, and rising from there.

Computing PhD: If you could give our current PhD students one piece of helpful advice or wisdom, what would it be?
Rahman: Self study wins!

Computing PhD: What has been the most enjoyable, fulfilling or memorable part of this job change for you?
Rahman: A recognition of my hard work.