UConn’s student-athletes are often lauded for their on-field or on-court achievements, but there’s an equally important – often unseen – dimension to the student-athlete. UConn Today’s Student-Athlete Strong series highlights the academic prowess of selected high-achieving student-athletes and provides an inside look at their lives beyond their sport.
Kiera Dalmass ’18 (CLAS)
Hometown and high school: Moorestown, New Jersey; Moorestown High School
Sport: Women’s lacrosse
Area of study: Statistics, with minors in Mathematics and Spanish
Anticipated graduation: May 2018; MS May 2019
How did you decide on your major?
I decided on my major because I enjoy statistics. It combines math with language and is very useful in solving problems across many different fields. It’s also a growing field and provides many opportunities for what I want to do. I’ve enjoyed math since I was a kid, but statistics, at least in my opinion, is different than math. It involves a lot of interpretation, testing, and analysis.
What motivated you to take advantage of the UConn Honors Program?
The Honors Program is an incredible program. Even though there are extra events, assignments, etc. and the honors thesis, every piece is worth being part of such a program. I’ve already started my honors thesis, which is due April 26. The work for my thesis is on the efficacy of sports psychology by examining it through implementation in baseball. I’m fortunate to be able to graduate a year early this May, so I can pursue my Master of Science degree in statistics during my final year of lacrosse here at UConn.
Is there any help available for writing an honors thesis?
I’ve attended several workshops for writing my thesis. I’ve also been to a few thesis retreats. The workshops were great at providing necessary information for thesis planning. They also helped ease the stress a bit. I think the retreats provided a good space and time to get effective work done on my thesis.
I hear you have an internship at McKean Defense. What type of work do you do there?
At McKean Defense, I work for one client where I am mostly working with the Engine Removal Projection (ERP) Tool, which utilizes Kaplan-Meier survival analysis, and other engine data. My most memorable work so far was working on these engines over the summer and their role in the ERP Tool, and realizing that rather than a problem within the tool, there was a problem with the data input. After fixing that, the reliability and accountability of the model for those engines drastically improved.
With your team, women’s lacrosse, you’ve been working to raise awareness of relationship violence and specifically the One Love Foundation. Do you think your involvement has benefited the team, as well as the cause?
The One Love Foundation is a fantastic charity and cause to be involved with as a team. I do think that working with the organization has benefited not only the cause but also our team. As a team, we’ve learned a lot throughout the year during our workshops and other events. We’ve learned the severity of relationship violence, and how to recognize and help prevent it. Relationship violence is a huge problem around the world. The cause is to help spread the message, which we’ve done through our work, posting on social media, holding events, etc. Spreading the message of One Love, no matter how small a post, raises awareness for preventing relationship violence. We’ve also helped raise money for One Love. Any donation, any message, helps raise awareness for the cause.
What does it mean to you to be a Husky?
To me, being a Husky means giving everything your all. It means keeping your integrity, doing everything with a purpose, helping others, going out of your way to get things done, staying true to yourself, and standing up for what you believe in. It means putting the team before yourself so that everyone finds success. It means bleeding blue, taking advantage of all the resources the University has to offer, and making relationships that will last a lifetime. A Husky is selfless, honest, and hardworking. These are all qualities I strive to have in my character.