Cary Institute’s annual data jam

The words above represent projects submitted for last year’s Hudson Data Jam Competition sponsored by the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Making data “sing” through creative expression.
See the 2016 winners.

Important dates

May 1, 11:59 pm – Registration due online
May 12, 11:59 pm – Submissions due online
Early June – Expo. Prizes are awarded at the Expo; students need not be present to win. Stay tuned for time, place, and more details!

The Hudson Data Jam challenges students to tell stories for a general audience using data from the Hudson River watershed. Many types of data are available from historical climate and pollution trends to paleoclimate data from Lake Minnewaska, bird migration dates to ant diversity in New York City. This year we’ve highlighted eight data sets, providing background material to help students (and teachers!) really dig into local science. Students select a data set and then figure out a way to share their knowledge with others in a fun and creative way.

The video below, produced by students working with Spark Media Project’s FRAME initiative, covers Data Jam essentials; check it out! To get in on this year’s competition, register by May 1 and submit projects online by May 12. Some deadline flexibility is available for AP classes working on projects after the exam. Students are eligible for cash prizes of $100-500, door prizes, and a People’s Choice Award. Details.

The 2016 Data Jam featured 85 projects from across from across the Hudson River watershed. Many topics were covered, and students chose to explain their work with a variety of creative tools. For Hudson River Data Jam participants, imagination is the only limit!

Students from Ossining HS placed first in the high school category for 2016 with a skit to explaining how salt pollution influences aquatic macro invertebrates, Hold the Salt: A Tale of Three Macro Invertebrates.

Stissing Mountain MS students came in second in the middle school category with Zebra Mussel Disaster: The Organisms Documentary.

Data Jam aims to encourage students to learn about the Hudson watershed and then share what they’ve learned, highlighting the excellent scientific information available on this beautiful place we call home.