About April Heyward
April Heyward is a Public Sector Practitioner, Adjunct Faculty, Public Administration Doctoral Researcher, R Programmer, and ASPA PA Times Columnist. She is the Program Manager for the SC EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) Program at the South Carolina Research Authority. EPSCoR is a science-driven state-based National Science Foundation (NSF) program. She develops, implements, and manages STEM programs and initiatives to increase research capacity, research competitiveness, and the STEM workforce pipeline in South Carolina. Her aim is to engage and expose K-12 students to STEM (e.g., hands on activities, research experiences for K-12 teachers) so they become STEM majors. As STEM majors (e.g., Bachelor, Master, Ph.D. levels), research experiences are provided to gain scientific research experience and communicate research results and experiences via publications and presentations. Student researchers apply their research experience and pursue STEM academic, government, or industry careers. SC EPSCoR fosters faculty development to aid in the pursuit of tenure and promotion (the rigorous process of moving from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor to Full Professor). Scientific research leads to discovery (new scientific knowledge), innovation (new products, services, processes, ideas), and economic development (business and job creation).
April’s teaching interests are Computational Social Science, Data Science, Decision Science, Machine Learning, Public Administration, Public Policy, Research Methods, and Social Media Research. She is an Adjunct Faculty in the Master of Public Administration (MPA) Program in the Department of Political Science in the School of Humanities and Social Science at the College of Charleston. She is credentialed to teach PUBA 601 Research Methods for Public Administration, PUBA 602 Public Policy, and PUBA 604 Managing Human Resources courses. April’s education philosophy is to foster and facilitate a learning-centered approach where she as the instructor and students are both participating in the learning experience. Her aim is to educate students through her teaching, research, service, and professional experience. April is pursuing her Doctorate in Public Administration in the Department of Political Science in the College of Humanities and Social Science at Valdosta State University. She is in the Dissertation phase of her Doctoral Program. Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Benedict College and a Master of Research Administration (MRA) from the University of Central Florida (UCF). She is a Riley Institute Diversity Fellow at Furman University.
April’s research interests are Computational Social Science, Data Science, Decision Science, E-Government, Machine Learning, Public Administration, Public Policy, Research Methods, and Social Media Research. Data Science and Machine Learning are fascinating sub-disciplines of Artificial Intelligence, and their application can be adapted by a plethora of disciplines (e.g., Social Science). Computational Social Science is employing Data Science and Machine Learning algorithms to inform and to solve complex problems in Social Science. April is integrating Data Science and Machine Learning algorithms and employing R programming specifically RStudio into her research, research methods, and non-research projects. There is a global human resource challenge in finding individuals from various domains that do programming; statistics; data wrangling to a tidy format in preparation for data analysis and data visualization; and employ Machine Learning algorithms. Her long-term research focus is how Data Science and Machine Learning can inform and solve complex problems in Public Administration, Public Policy, and the other sub-disciplines of Social Science.
April is a member of the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), ASPA Section on Public Administration Research, ASPA Section on International and Comparative Administration, ASPA Lowcountry Chapter, and the South Carolina Academy of Science. She is a Columnist for ASPA PA (Public Administration) Times. April is the Vice President of the South Carolina Academy of Science and is a member of the South Carolina Academy of Science Council. She is a HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration) Grant Reviewer and evaluates proposals in a fair, equitable, and objective manner to provide healthcare services for persons living with HIV (PLWH).