Yue Hu

Yue Hu
Class Year
Areas of Interest
Decision, Risk, and Operations

For Yue Hu, the decision to pursue an academic career in the field of operations research has always been driven by one very tangible goal: solving real-world problems.

“During my undergraduate study at Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences department at Northwestern University, I gained great passion for developing and analyzing interesting mathematical models for business problems,” Hu says.

She felt that a PhD in operations research would enable her to receive rigorous and systematic training in identifying meaningful issues and utilizing the correct mathematical tools to address them. Hu was drawn to Columbia Business School’s Decision, Risk, and Operations Division for its cutting-edge research in operations management.

“The School’s DRO faculty members are world leaders in a variety of disciplines, including healthcare, revenue management, supply chain, and financial engineering,” Hu says. “It is extremely humbling and insightful to work closely in academics with my CBS professors and colleagues.” 

Hu’s current research is focused on using modeling tools and applied probability to tackle operational challenges faced by service systems — particularly in healthcare. She is studying the ability to apply operations theory to assist with staffing and scheduling decisions in hospitals. Recently, she has designed scheduling policies for proactive care in intensive care units, capacity sizing in the inpatient wards, and optimizing nurse staffing for emergency departments based on demand forecasts.

“It is gratifying that our quantitative analyses can make a real-world impact,” Hu says.

The School’s DRO research community has provided crucial support and encouragement for her work, Hu says. “I feel fortunate to communicate frequently with my advisors in our weekly research meetings, daily conversations, and departmental seminars. The inspirational ideas and technical guidance I receive from them are unparalleled.”

After earning her PhD, Hu plans to stay engaged with the vibrant operations research community while paying forward the support she has received.

“I want to pass on the support and inspiration I have received from my advisors to future generations,” Hu says. “The academic rigor and relevance in Columbia’s DRO Division prepare students well in achieving this goal.”