Which got me thinking about fun case studies for statistics. But not, like, the classic story about Guinness Brewery and the t-test. I want case studies that feature a regular person in a regular job who used their idiosyncratic expertise to deduce from data in order to do something great. An example popped into my head while I was walking my dog and listening to the Hamilton soundtrack: Hercules Mulligan.
|Okieriete Onaodowan, portraying Hercules Mulligan in Hamilton|
Here is a better summary, from the CIA:
I like this example because he wasn't George Washington. And he wasn't Alexander Hamilton. He had this seemingly innocuous job, but he knew his job well, and he was smart, and he was able to see patterns in the information and turn them into valuable knowledge. He made the decision to use that knowledge in a spy network, which could have got him killed but instead saved George Washington's life on one notable occasion (it should also be noted, that his slave DID NOT make the choice to risk his life).
Similarly, I believe we should be teaching our students to be the best <insert dream job here> they can be, with the understanding that they will benefit from statistical reasoning skills and the ability to detect patterns that no one else can see.
Or, if you want to here Hercules Mulligan via Lin-Manuel Miranda, go to 2:40 on this video. Aside: Hercules Mulligan's solo in The Battle of Yorktown is my favorite rally song. I am working on having the swagger of Herc.