UB People

An academic life at 90

Richard Schmidt

Richard Schmidt (Photo: Nancy J. Parisi)

Although he officially retired in 1985, Richard Schmidt, professor emeritus in the Department of Biostatistics, has found it hard to leave UB. A member of the university community for 65 years, Schmidt, who turned 90 in July, still comes into his office in Farber Hall twice a week to work on his latest book on statistics. He also remains involved in the Buffalo-Niagara chapter of the American Statistical Association.

A lifelong Buffalo-area resident who has never lived more than two miles from the South Campus, Schmidt continued to maintain his longtime habit of walking to work from his home in Eggertsville until last year.

Schmidt, who has learned about 50 computer languages in his career, continues learning them today. “Now I’m learning the PC language,” he says. “There’s something interesting in the logic of programming that I like very much.”

He also keeps active through travel. In the past several years, Schmidt has traveled throughout Europe, Australia and New Zealand, and returned recently from a three-week trip to China with his grandson, he added.

“Most of life you don’t plan,” Schmidt says of his long and accomplished career. “It just happens. I didn’t plan anything, it just worked out. It’s worked out wonderful.”