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Davis Summers

Summers, a senior business analytics major, says what he learns in classes in Haslam has very real applications.

- Student

In the summer of 2020, Davis Summers interviewed with Community Organized Relief Effort (CORE) of Atlanta, Georgia, hoping to help his community. The global crisis response organization seeks to bring aid and recovery to underserved communities through emergency relief, disaster preparedness, environmental resilience and community building.

CORE of Atlanta hired Summers as a logistical analyst, and he began work as CORE ramped up its newest initiative – aiding area communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. What started as a four-week appointment turned into a skill-building experience with significant community impact.

“It really became a long-term internship,” says Summers, a senior business analytics major.

His first task was to build a spreadsheet using Georgia board of health data to determine what counties were more at risk than others for the spread of COVID-19. Based on the analysis of this data, CORE would dispatch resources, such as COVID-19 testing sites. Summers also managed CORE warehouse spreadsheets, ensuring that personal protective equipment was ready for distribution to workers.

 When vaccines became available, Summers’ focus shifted to vaccine data. Working remotely, he set up vaccine sites, giving people a place to register to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.

“When I receive data, I enter it and let people know their site is approved,” Summers says. “From there, I ensure that clinicians are available to be there.”

Summers has built more than 100 vaccine sites, stretching from North Atlanta to Savannah, Georgia.

“It feels surreal at times, seeing the data and being able to feel like I had an impact,” he says.

Continuing to work with CORE has affected the way Summers approaches his classes in the Haslam College of Business.

“My internship made me realize there are so many things that had real-world applications,” Summers says. “What I’m learning in my classes in Haslam has very real applications. The skills are immediately transferrable.”

Summers says since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, the CORE vaccine sites have been in high demand. Currently, he is helping build a geocoding map to show users vaccine sites.

“We’re trying to get out there and help as many people as we can,” Summers says.

 As he looks to the future post-graduation, Summers knows that he wants to pursue jobs in logistical analytics or data analysis.

“Having this experience that aligned with my major has been incredible,” says Summers.