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Talithia Williams

Big Data Expert & Professor, Math & Statistics


Dr. Talithia Williams specializes in statistics and big data, taking sophisticated math concepts and making them relevant to everyone. As illustrated in her popular TedTalk, "Own Your Body's Data," she inspires students of any age to embrace numbers and pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

In the classroom and the community she brings numbers to life, much in the same way a successful writer or storyteller brings words alive on the page, illuminating new sides of ourselves through a savvy turn of phrase. Williams shows us how we can "read" numbers and formulas in order to make our lives better.

She delivers rousing, relatable presentations in which numbers and data reveal the truth about our bodies, our lives, our minds and our surroundings. Through the power of math, we can integrate all of these and in the process become our best and truest selves.



The Value of a STEM Education

One of the great challenges in the life and work of the esteemed statistician Dr. Talithia Williams is how we can better address the achievement gap in science, mathematics, engineering and technology so that minorities and especially young girls of color come to embrace STEM as a viable academic and career path. In this presentation targeted to educational professionals, Williams draws on her own experiences in the classroom and as part of the non-profit Sacred SISTAHS (Sisters in Solidarity Teaching and Healing Our Spirit), revealing actionable ways to instill confidence and motivation inside the classroom and in the community, championing all things STEM as crucial to the future of the country. A staunch believer in a strong mathematics foundation from an early age, Williams shows how to cultivate the STEM mindset, helping students and educators see in themselves a future mathematician or engineer. Employing the rousing and highly informative speaking style of her hit TedTalk "Own Your Body's Data," Williams shows how much STEM affects our daily lives — and how numbers can leap off a page or screen, infuse us and our surroundings, and help us better understand how we live in the world.

Using Data as a Tool to Ignite Passion for STEM

Our academic institutions are seen as beacons of hope for those in our neighboring communities and are a source of pride for many of our alumni. At Harvey Mudd College, we are working to address the STEM achievement gap by exposing local underrepresented middle and high school girls and their parents to the opportunities that exist in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics while engaging them with current students, alumni, and faculty. In this talk, I’ll share how I worked with our Office of Institutional Advancement and Office of Community Engagement to build a compelling case for our STEM conference that effectively engaged members of the local community, potential donors and the local media.

Transforming the STEM Landscape: A Lesson in Disruptive Innovation

Meeting the demands of a 21st century STEM workforce requires that we look beyond traditional talent pools to recruit and train individuals typically underrepresented in math, science and engineering. This talk will explore the disruptive innovation we employed to motivate girls of color to embrace technology, become open to pursuing STEM degrees, and envision themselves as future STEM leaders. By challenging the status quo, we allow for ongoing innovative contributions to our society and the world in general.

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