Learn from Experts

in the Field of Data Science

Jeff Hovis

Program Director and Assistant Professor of Practice

Jeff Hovis, Assistant Professor of Practice, Program Director for Data Science and Product Management. Creator of the product management master’s program and assistant professor, Jeff is also a partner in a growing, boutique Strategic Innovation consulting firm, spun out of the MIT Innovation Center. Jeff connects corporate and market strategy to actionable, pragmatic technology and product roadmaps to create significant new growth.

Fotios Kokkotos, Ph. D.

Associate Professor of Practice, Data Science

Dr. Fotios Kokkotos is an accredited professional statistician (PStat®) by the American Statistical Association with over 25 years of experience in statistical consulting. Dr. Kokkotos specializes in the analysis of massive and complex databases using advanced data science and statistical techniques. He has a wide range of experience in many areas of statistics and data science, including but not limited to data mining, predictive analytics, deep learning, economic modeling of patient health outcomes, and is also an expert in Medicare data.

Dr. Kokkotos is a long-time member of the American Statistical Association and the Mathematical Association of America and holds a doctorate degree in mathematical statistics from The American University in Washington DC, a master’s degree in applied statistics and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, both obtained from Wright State University, in Dayton, Ohio.

His current research interests are the application of statistics, data mining and statistical computing, and Dr. Kokkotos is an author and reviewer of numerous articles and poster presentations in many scientific journals, conferences and academic institutions.  He has been involved in many statistical research collaborations with colleagues from top universities, such as Harvard, Cornell, Tufts, Michigan and Northwestern. Fotios teaches Introduction to Data Science and Statistics, Data Governance and Privacy, and Predictive Modeling for the Data Science program.

Peter Salemi, Ph.D.

Adjunct Faculty, Data Science 

Dr. Peter Salemi has over 10 years of experience in quantitative research, machine learning, and statistics in both academic and industry settings. As a data scientist at The MITRE Corporation, he works with several Federal agencies ranging from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Dr. Salemi received his Ph.D. in Operations Research from Northwestern University, an M.S. in Operations Research from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.S. in Mathematics and B.B.A. in Finance from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

His academic research interests lie at the intersection of machine learning and stochastic simulation, and Dr. Salemi’s research has been published in Operations Research, ACM Transactions on Modeling and Computer Simulation, and Journal of Simulation. Dr. Salemi has also served as the co-chair of the Simulation Optimization track for the 2017, 2019, and 2020 Winter Simulation Conferences, and as a reviewer for several academic journals.  His teaching interests are machine learning, data management, and statistics. As an adjunct faculty member at Merrimack College, Dr. Salemi is the instructor for both the Machine Learning and Text and Image Mining courses.

Christopher Healey, Ph.D.

Adjunct Faculty, Data Science

Chris is a Data Science Lead at Schneider Electric – a multinational power electronics, energy storage, and building management company.  He leads work in industrial applications of data science for predictive maintenance, intelligent alarm management, and efficient use of devices.  He is deeply interested in robust decision-making through stochastic optimization and interpretation of machine learning models.  A long-time member of INFORMS, he has authored several refereed papers and been granted multiple patents.

Chris received a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech and BS in Mathematics from William and Mary. Chris teaches Data Exploration for the Data Science & Analytics program. Chris teaches Visual Data Exploration for the Data Science program.

Josh Orenstein

Associate Professor, Master of Science in Data Science

Josh Orenstein is currently the NBA’s Senior Director of Basketball Strategy & Analytics and Senior Data Scientist. He has over a decade of experience in the sports industry as a data scientist. He analyzed 3D radar data that transformed performance evaluation and development in Major League Baseball. At the NBA, he uses advanced analytics to improve the competitiveness of the on-court product, evaluation of referees, and evaluation of collegiate basketball players. He teaches “Advanced Sports Analytics” at Merrimack College and is a Columbia University Lecturer.

Jeremiah Lowhorn, M.S.

Jeremiah is a Data Scientist with nine years of experience in analytics. He is currently and adjunct faculty member in the Data Science & Analytics program.  His interests include computer vision, natural language processing, time series analysis, and distributed computing. Jeremiah is fluent in R, Python, VBA, SQL, and is interested in learning new programming languages.

In his leisure he spends time with his wife Brooke and son Magnus. Jeremiah holds a BS in Financial Analysis from Ball State University, a MS in Analytics from Dakota State University, and is pursuing an MSIS and PhD from Dakota State University. Jeremiah teaches R and Python Programming in the Data Science program.

Success Coach

Torrey Walker DiPalma, M.Ed.

Assistant Director & Senior Advisor, Graduate Programs, School of Science and Engineering

Torrey is our success coach for the Data Science & Analytics program and is very important to the overall student experience.  Throughout your time in working towards your degree, Torrey will help address many of the questions you may have “outside the classroom”.  In doing so, Torrey will help free more of your time to concentrate on mastering the content that is so important to your program progression.

Torrey has earned her BA in Mathematics from the College of the Holy Cross and has earned her M.Ed. in Higher Education from Merrimack College.  You will get to engage with Torrey from the time you are admitted until the time you graduate, allowing you to have a consistent point of contact as you work to achieve your goals!