Data Science Research Assistant

Rochester, NY


Job Description:

The data science research assistant will use data science techniques to match produce grocery items between the Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies (FNDDS) dataset and a dataset from a grocery store loyalty card derived purchase data to enable further nutritional content analysis of grocery store purchases for health and nutritional research in public health sciences and ophthalmology.


In an iterative process with feedback from the research team’s experts of nutritional databases the consultant will use data science techniques with guidance from a data scientist as needed to match items from a de-identified grocery store loyal card purchase dataset with corresponding items in the FNDDS database to allow for calculating the nutritional content in food purchases.

Data matching (65% of Time)

Collaborating with Team Members (20% of Time)

Report writing (10% of Time)

Other tasks as assigned (5% of Time)

The goal is to create a matched database with at least 90-95% match to allow calculation of the amount of nutrients in each of the loyal store grocery produce purchases. This will enable the research team to analyze purchases for nutritional context and study temporal and seasonal trends in purchases of nutrients in foods. Focus of the matching will be on produce – vegetable and fruit items, in the fresh, frozen, canned, and dry form.

The consultant will clearly document the methods they used and the challenges and facilitators related to their scope of work for future publications and grant applications. (10%)

The goal is to create a matched database with at least 90-95% match to allow calculation of the amount of nutrients in each of the loyal store grocery produce purchases.


Supervision of the consultant will be by. Rajeev Ramchandran, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at URSMD who reports to Dr. David DiLoreto, Chair of Ophthalmology at URSMD and the consultant’s departmental academic advisor Dr. Jiebo Luo.

The consultant will work independently and be in weekly communication with the 3 nutritional experts on the team and the team member with software engineering and health services research expertise along with Dr. Jiebo Luo, the data and computer science member on the research team. Their work will be reviewed by the research team, which also includes a biostatistician, data analyst, and Dr. Ramchandran in addition to the above individuals, at weekly meetings that may occasionally require the consultant to be present to showcase and review their work.


The work described will be need to be completed successfully with a fully match dataset and with a detailed report of how the matching was accomplished by November 30, 2023, with the consultant being acknowledged for their work in future manuscripts and publications.


The consultant should have expertise in data science methods through related course work, such as python programming and machine learning, and have their bachelors’ degree in a relevant field such as data science or computer science and working to their Masters’ in data science or computer science. Skill and ability of the consultant will be evaluated as appropriate for the proposed work by Dr. Jiebo Luo.

The University of Rochester is committed to fostering, cultivating, and preserving a culture of equity, diversity, and inclusion to advance the University’s mission to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create – and Make the World Ever Better. In support of our values and those of our society, the University is committed to not discriminating on the basis of age, color, disability, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, military/veteran status, national origin, race, religion/creed, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship status, or any other status protected by law. This commitment extends to the administration of our policies, admissions, employment, access, and recruitment of candidates from underrepresented populations, veterans, and persons with disabilities consistent with these values and government contractor Affirmative Action obligations.

How To Apply

All applicants must apply online.

EOE Minorities/Females/Protected Veterans/Disabled

Pay Range

Pay Range: $15.00 - $25.96

The referenced pay range represents the minimum and maximum compensation for this job. Individual annual salaries/hourly rates will be set within the job’s compensation range, and will be determined by considering factors including, but not limited to, market data, education, experience, qualifications, expertise of the individual, and internal equity considerations.

Location: Strong Memorial Hospital
Full/Part Time: TAR
Opening: Time as Reported Grade 074 Ophthalmology Eye Clinic
Schedule: 8 AM-4:30 PM