The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, traveled to the heart of Silicon Valley this week to speak with attendees at the DataBeat 2013 Data Science Summit. Dr. Rappa shared the dais with colleagues from Stanford and Northwestern in a panel discussion on data science education. Northwestern launched its Master of Science in Analytics program in 2012 and will graduate its first cohort of 30 students this month. The Institute is currently in progress with its seventh Master of Science in Analytics cohort, a group of 80 candidates, who are scheduled to graduate in May. Stanford recently announced a new “Data Science Track” as part of its Master of Science in Computational and Mathematical Engineering program. There are now over 40 new graduate programs in the U.S. aimed specifically at analytics and data science.
Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Tom Davenport (author of the bestseller Competing on Analytics) praised the Institute’s innovative approach to graduate education as a model to be emulated. Davenport is critical of what he sees at other universities, where analytics degree programs are typically placed in a single school and, as a result, offer a narrow perspective. Lamenting the lack of faculty collaboration, Davenport asks “But why can’t we all get along? The earliest graduate degree in analytics, the Master of Science in Analytics at North Carolina State, was a cross-university initiative from its beginning in 2007.” First proposed by Dr. Michael Rappa in April 2006 and launched with a 3-year gift from SAS, the MSA program has become a model of collaboration for interdisciplinary programs, delivering an unparalleled track record in student outcomes for six straight years. “It’s not easy to get academics to work together across schools,” Davenport said “but in NC State’s case it seems to have been worth the trouble. The program is fantastically successful in terms of student applications and corporate hiring of graduates.”
December 15 is the priority deadline for prospective applicants who are not U.S. citizens to submit their application for admission to the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) degree program. The Institute seeks to enroll 85 talented and motivated students for the Class of 2015—the eighth MSA cohort since 2007—which begins classes next June. While applications are accepted year round, international applicants are encouraged to apply by December 15 to meet the Graduate School’s priority deadline, Read the rest of this entry »
The Institute thanks the numerous guest lecturers and employers who visited this semester to meet with members of the MSA Class of 2014. We are very grateful for the time they spent sharing information about their work on the front lines of the analytics profession. Visiting lecturers covered a wide range of contemporary topics, from the analytics of software security to the emerging industrial internet, and represented nearly a dozen industries, including aerospace, apparel, banking, consulting, consumer product goods, health care, hospitality, and insurance, among others. Read the rest of this entry »
Women in Computer Science (WiCS) and NCSU Libraries co-hosted a screening of the documentary She++, which explores the issues around girls, code and computing, followed by a panel discussion with the Institute’s research associate, Andrea Villanes. The panel was moderated by Dr. Lina Battestilli, WiCS faculty advisor, and also included NCSU computer science professors Tiffany Barnes and Sarah Heckman, and Google software engineer Melanie Donny-Clark. In the past decade the number of first-year female undergraduates who expressed interest in a computer science major declined 79%. Read the rest of this entry »
The Institute’s Dr. Aric LaBarr and Dr. Michael Rappa were in Baltimore this week to talk in separate sessions at the Decision Sciences Institute (DSI) Annual Meeting. Dr. LaBarr participated in a panel with Satish Nargundkar (Georgia State), Bob McQuaid (Pepperdine), and Kirk Karwan (Furman), which focused on experiences and advice on how to include analytics in university curriculum. The session discussed software tools, preparing data for analysis, balancing the use off-the-shelf software with providing mathematical understanding of techniques, and the amount of teamwork and communication skill development, among other topics. Read the rest of this entry »
What if social networks were smart enough to “forget” friends who were mere acquaintances? What if search engines could “forget” obscure images and webpages crawled years ago? Imagining a future where technologies possess human qualities (like forgetfulness) was the focus of a wide-ranging discussion led by the Institute’s director Dr. Michael Rappa and MIT’s Miriam Roure at Engaging Data 2013, a conference organized by the MIT Senseable City Lab in Cambridge. “The ability to collect, analyze, and store data in perpetuity,” says Rappa, “has created a world in sharp contrast to how the mind has evolved to cope with everyday life. Forgetting (and recollecting) are inherently human qualities, and arguably necessary in a social context.” Read the rest of this entry »
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, spoke today at the Internet Summit, the Southeast’s largest gathering of people and companies focused on digital media, which is held in Raleigh each year at the Convention Center. Dr. Rappa led a session on “Big Insights from Big Data,” with a talk on the emerging role of data scientists. The session included Brian d’Alessandro (VP of Data Science, Dstillery), Julie Lockner (VP, Information LMS, Informatica), and Srinidhi Kondaji (Software Engineer, Data Science, Eventbrite).
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, was in Washington, DC, today to participate in a White House sponsored meeting to explore public-private partnerships in Big Data. Called Data-to-Knowledge-to-Action, the high-level summit brought together government, industry, and university leaders to discuss collaborations in education and R&D. Dr. Rappa moderated a panel discussion on Education and Workforce Development featuring Dr. Deborah Nolan (University of California at Berkeley) and Dr. Roy Campbell (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign). Berkeley, partnering with NYU and the University of Washington, announced a $38 million gift for data science from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Illinois announced a $100 million gift from The Grainger Foundation that will focus on two topics, big data and bioengineering. Read the rest of this entry »
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, spoke today with faculty and students at the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, as part of the Belk College of Business Distinguished Speaker Series. Dr. Rappa spoke about the Institute’s innovative formula for success in addressing employer demand for analytics talent. UNC-Charlotte has proposed the creation of a Master of Science in Data Science and Business Analytics, as a Professional Science Master’s program that draws faculty expertise from the Belk College of Business and the College of Computing and Informatics. The new degree program is scheduled to begin in 2014 pending approval of the UNC Board of Governors. Commenting on the proposal, Dr. Rappa said “UNC-Charlotte is moving in the right direction, working together across disciplinary boundaries to develop an education that will help fulfill a growing need in the region for analytics skills. It’s gratifying to know the Institute has been a source of inspiration for our colleagues in Charlotte.”
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, traveled to Manhattan this week to participate in a plenary panel discussion on data scientists at Building a Smarter University: Big Data, Innovation and Ingenuity, hosted by The State University of New York (SUNY) and its Chancellor, Nancy Zimpher. The event was the third installment in the SUNY Critical Issues in Higher Education conference series. In a wide ranging and sometimes contentious discussion, Dr. Rappa was joined by Harper Reed, self-proclaimed hacker and former CTO of the Obama re-election campaign; Vivek Wadhwa, technology entrepreneur turned academic and frequent columnist; and Dr. Shirley Malcom, Head of Education and Human Resources for the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Congratulations to Andrea Villanes, the Institute’s research associate, who took home the Best Poster Award at the 21st Annual Meeting of the Southeast SAS Users Group (SESUG) in St. Pete Beach, Florida. Andrea’s poster, Analytical Approach for Bot Cheating Detection in a Massive Multiplayer Online Racing Game, is based on her master’s thesis in Computer Science. The poster will be featured at other SAS conferences in the coming year. Andrea joined the Institute’s staff full-time in July after earning her M.S. in Computer Science.
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, joined esteemed colleagues from several major universities today to engage employers in a dialogue about the role of analytics education programs in addressing the talent gap at the Analytics 2013 Conference in Orlando, Florida. The panel, entitled “Big Data, Academia and The Job Market,” was organized and chaired by Dr. Jennifer Priestley (Kennesaw State University), and included Dr. Jeff Camm (University of Cincinnati), Dr. Goutam Chakraborty (Oklahoma State University), Dr. Charles Sox (University of Alabama), and Dr. Richard Sowers (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign). The panel represented some of the country’s premiere graduate degree and certificate programs focused on analytics. Sponsored by SAS, Analytics 2013 is an industry-leading conference for the latest ideas, research and best practices in the field of analytics.
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, was in Los Angeles today to speak with attendees at the annual conference of the Council of American Survey Research Organizations (known as CASRO). CASRO brings together senior executives across companies engaged in consumer marketing research. It’s a field that’s going through rapid changes due to advances in business analytics and the proliferation of data through social media and mobile technologies. Dr. Rappa spoke about the Institute’s innovative model for educating the data savvy professionals, the Master of Science in Analytics, now in its seventh year.
Want to advance aviation safety mining terabytes of data flowing from modern airliners? Or reduce medical costs and improve quality of care analyzing health records? Are you a sports enthusiast and want to live Moneyball in real life? Our graduates do all that and more. If you have a mind for mathematics and statistical programming, and a passion for working with data to solve challenging problems, we invite you to join the Institute and hundreds of its graduates and let us help boost your career as an analytics professional. Apply for admission to the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) Class of 2015, slated to begin studies next June. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis, so it’s wise to apply early. Information sessions are held throughout the fall semester.
The Institute is pleased to introduce 80 candidates in the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) Class of 2014. Interested employers and other friends of the Institute are encouraged to learn more about our students by reading the Student Profile Book, which is now available to download. The Class of 2014 Resume Book is scheduled to be distributed in December. Prospective employers are welcome to contact us to receive their free copy.
SAS Institute, the leader in business analytics software and services, hosted a visit today by the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) Class of 2014 in its Executive Briefing Center at the company’s campus in Cary, North Carolina. Dr. James Goodnight, SAS co-founder and CEO, spoke with students about the company’s latest generation of high performance analytics technology and solutions. Joining Dr. Goodnight was Dr. Radhika Kulkarni, VP Advanced Analytics R&D, Laurie Jackson, HR/R&D Manager, and a panel of discussants: Angela Hall, Betsy Matthews (MSA’13), Leslie Anderson, Vinu Vainateya (MSA’12), Robert Moreira (MSA’13), Prashant Pai, and Jennifer Trotter (MSA’08). Afterward, students attended a reception. Read the rest of this entry »
The NFL’s defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens lead this year’s roster of practicum project sponsors for the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) Class of 2014. The Ravens are joined by Major League Baseball’s Houston Astros as the two professional sports clubs among 17 sponsors in total. The projects—which span aerospace, autos, chemicals, apparel, consumer product goods, banking, air transportation, healthcare, lodging, and government—were selected from 56 proposals submitted to the Institute. New this year to the list of sponsors are: Cisco, Eastman Chemical, J.M. Smucker & Co., Premier, Recall, Rex Healthcare, SchoolDude, United Airlines, and Volvo. Read the rest of this entry »
Prospective applicants to the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) degree program are encouraged to attend one of the many information sessions, which begin in September and are held throughout the fall semester. Attendees will learn about the MSA curriculum and how to apply for admission. Please come and meet the staff and tour the Institute’s facilities. Seating on any given date is limited, so be sure to register in advance if you plan to attend.
The National Security Agency announced today the establishment of the Laboratory for Analytic Sciences (LAS) located adjacent to the Institute on NC State’s Centennial Campus. The $60 million lab will be a cornerstone of the emerging advanced data innovation hub at NC State, bringing together some of the brightest minds from government, academia, and industry to collaborate on the most challenging big data problems. “We have chosen the Research Triangle area for its vibrant academic and industry interest in large data analytics, and NC State for having the nation’s first, and preeminent, advanced degree program in data analytics,” said Dr. Michael Wertheimer, Director of Research, NSA. “By immersing intelligence analysts with NC State’s diverse group of scientists, we hope to discover new and powerful ways to meet our foreign signals intelligence and information assurance missions – giving us an edge to better protect the nation.”
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, was in Montréal today speaking at the Joint Statistical Meetings (JSM), during an invited panel on Curriculum Development and Funding Opportunities in Big Data. In his presentation, Dr. Rappa provided an overview of the Master of Science in Analytics and its success in meeting the growing demand for data scientists. Dr. Rappa was joined on the panel by Bill Howe (University of Washington), Michelle Christine Dunn (National Cancer Institute), Nandini Kannan (NSF) and session chair, Sastry Pantula (Dean of the College of Science at Oregon State University).
The Institute offers two courses for individuals who do not already have the prerequisite knowledge of statistics to enroll in the Master of Science in Analytics degree program. Registration is now open for ST513 and ST514, which are taught online and can be taken in either Fall or Spring semesters. The prerequisites are intended for prospective MSA applicants (including those who are not currently enrolled at NC State) to help prepare for admission in the summer of 2014. Those individuals looking to take their first course in statistics should start with ST513. Individuals with prior coursework in statistics may be eligible to enroll directly into ST514. Please send questions about the courses to the intstructors: Dr. Kostas Kyriakoulis (ST513) or Dr. Aric LaBarr (ST514).
It’s back to school this week for hundreds of 6th-, 7th-, and 8th-graders at nearby Centennial Campus Middle School. The MSA Class of 2014 sought to lend a helping hand to our Centennial Campus neighbors by holding a charitable drive to donate school supplies—from pencils and notebooks to backpacks to USB data storage devices—everything schoolchildren need to be productive, but cannot always afford on a tight family budget. Many thanks to all of the MSA student volunteers who gave generously of their time in the collection effort, and our sincere gratitude to everyone who made a donation! Read the rest of this entry »
The Institute is delighted to announce the appointment of Andrea Villanes, an analytics specialist with expertise in statistical and computer programming, to the position of Research Associate. A Class of 2009 graduate in the Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) degree program, Andrea also received a M.S. in Computer Science from NC State University in 2012. Andrea was awarded a grant from the Anita Borg Institute to promote computer science education among young women living in rural areas in her native country of Peru, and was recently featured on Peruvian television. Andrea worked previously as an intern on data and text mining projects with Wal-Mart (Bentonville, Arkansas) and Inmar (Winston-Salem, North Carolina).
The Institute’s director, Dr. Michael Rappa, was in Cambridge, Massachusetts, this week visiting colleagues at Harvard and delivering a keynote address at the 7th Annual M.I.T. Chief Data Officer and Information Quality Symposium. Dr. Rappa spoke about the role of the data scientist in modern organizations. The Institute’s Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) degree program has a successful 6-year track record in creating a new cadre of data savvy professionals to fill the rapidly growing needs of industry and government. The annual gathering at M.I.T. is a leading forum to exchange ideas on the future of data management and information quality. Below is an interview with Dr. Rappa by SiliconAngle: