2024 Department Retreat

The 2024 Department of Biostatistics Retreat 

Save the date! Friday, November 15

Nelson Andrews Leadership Center, 3088 Smith Springs Road, Nashville, TN 37013

The center

Planning committee: Rameela Raman (chair), Bryan Blette (co-chair), Marisa Blackman, Sheau-Chiann Chen, Josh DeClercq, James Grindstaff, Jess Lai, Terri Scott


  • Printable PDF of the below instructions.

    For those driving

    The address is Nelson Andrews Leadership Center, 3088 Smith Springs Road, Antioch, TN 37013 (36.0880851,-86.5881031).

    If you put the street address into Google Maps, it will take you directly to the building, NOT to the parking lot, so follow these directions below from Smith Spring Road:

    Turn onto the main driveway from Smith Spring Road. The Nelson Andrews Leadership Center and Camp Widjiwagan share the same main driveway.

    Arch over main driveway

    Drive straight, approximately ¾ of a mile. You will park at the first parking area on the RIGHT, the Main Parking. There will be an attendant to help direct you.

    Sign and trees at entrance to the Main Parking area

    After parking: You will see the YMCA Camp Office across the street from the parking lot (big blue building). There will be a walking path leading you past the building to the Nelson Andrews Leadership center path entrance.

    the blue Camp Office

    Walk alongside the right of the YMCA Camp Office building, and you will see the entrance to the path to the venue.

    Wood rectangular arch with NELSON ANDREWS LEADERSHIP LODGE on the crossbar

    Continue along the walking path to the Nelson Andrews Leadership Center!

    Entrance to the center - split modernist roof and lots of glass panes

    An aerial view of these directions:

    Aerial view of the path from the parking area to the center


    For those carpooling

    Follow the directions above to park and walk to the venue. We have one person who has offered to drive others. If you would like to offer to drive or need a ride, fill out your info here (click Open > Microsoft Excel Online to add your info).


    For those getting dropped off

    Anyone out-of-town whom we’re providing a car service for, they know to drop you off directly to the left of the building. (The address is Nelson Andrews Leadership Center, 3088 Smith Springs Road, Antioch, TN 37013.) For those taking a Lyft/Uber, you can give them the address, which should take them directly to the building venue, where there is a small parking lot/roundabout where they can drop you off.

  • Details subject to change.

    Who will be at the retreat?
    All current department members are strongly encouraged to attend: primary, secondary, and adjunct faculty members; administrative, analytical, and IT staff; postdocs, students, and other trainees.

    Will we be going over the strategic plan, research directions, etc.? 
    Yes. There will also be EDI training. Details will be announced when confirmed.

    What should I wear? 
    Comfortable business casual. A VUMC photographer will be shooting group portraits for the department website and other publications, so please plan to wear something appropriately professional for those, but the day's agenda will also include a lot of sitting and standing and moving around. The photo shoot will take place outdoors unless rain or snow is coming down. 

    Also: there is a slide from the second floor to the first. If you wish to travel down the slide, please wear jeans or khakis or other non-slippery material, and be ready to brake with your hands and feet. (There are also stairs and elevators for individuals who don't wish to slide, and all the official activities are on the first floor or outdoors.)

    Slide warning: This slide is tuned for jeans and khakis. If you are wearing something like silk or rayon, you will go way too fast. So don't try it this visit. In any case, be ready to break with your hands and feet.

    slide entrance           view of slide to the ground

    Will there be food? 
    Breakfast and lunch will be served. Snacks and drinks/coffee will be available throughout the day. 

    What accommodations will you make for food allergies/intolerances? 
    If you specified your food allergies when you registered, your meals will be labeled with your name.

    I live out of state—what should I do? 
    The department will cover travel expenses incurred by your attendance at the retreat, including hotel lodging for one night (checking in Thursday, November 14). We will coordinate your flight and local transportation as well. You can seek reimbursement for meals not provided at the retreat. Please let Jena Altstatt know if you are not local so that she can work directly with you on your travel arrangements.

    Is there a wireless network at the venue?
    Yes. You'll find the password posted in the lobby.

    How do I sign up for the retreat?
    Invites will be sent electronically closer to the date. If you were employed/enrolled with the department when the initial Save the Date was issued, there is probably a hold for November 15 in your Outlook calendar.


  • Details to be revised.

    List updated 11.10.2022. Numbers reflect expected attendance in each group.

    1. Full department (132)

    2. All faculty & staff (97)

    3. All staff (59)

    4. Analytical/research staff (38)

    5. All faculty (47)

    6. Full graduate program (students, leaders, advisors, etc.) (29 + advisors)

    7. All students (24)

    8. PhD students (16)

    9. MS students (9)