Lara Troszak ('12) - Statistician, VA Palo Alto Healthcare System


I'm Lara Troszak, I graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in Winter 2012. I now work as a statistician at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Healthcare System. My studies in statistics at the University of Illinois led me to obtain a Masters in biostatistics at the University of California, Berkeley, which led me to my current position where I contribute to research projects that aim to improve access to and quality of healthcare for Veterans. When I started college, I felt very unsure about how I wanted to contribute to the world; so, the field of statistics resonated with me because of its focus on measuring uncertainty and formalizing educated guesswork. Along the way, I found that knowing statistics unlocked opportunities to work with and learn from people having a wide variety of interests. Although easy to lose track of in the constant whirlwind of new methods and tools, the most important things my degrees taught me were to take time to remember the question driving my work, to consider how I can best measure an answer to that question, and to learn about how the data I'm using to measure that answer are generated. I'm fortunate to use the skills I honed at the University of Illinois in a career that expresses gratitude to people who sacrifice so much to ensure our country's safety.

'12 - B.S. Statistics, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
M.A. Biostatistics, UC Berkeley