Environmental science

Hamilton Announces Data Science Concentration

Through the Data Science program, students will engage with statistical methods, algorithms, data structures and machine learning while gaining a critical understanding of the data life cycle and analysis. Courses in statistics, computing and applied domains such as government, environmental science and sociology will introduce the social impact of data science and ethical concerns such as privacy rights and data legality.

“I think it’s a huge boost [students’] Post-college plans, especially if they plan to work in a data-oriented field,” said Chintakka Kuruvita, associate professor of statistics and director of the data science program. “Employers don’t just want workhorses; they need people who can think with data. Our data science degrees develop the right amount of technical expertise as well as other skills that are essential to our modern world.”

The new concentration addresses the accelerating demand in academic, government and business settings for staff with quantitative, statistical and technical expertise to collect and analyze large data sets. Already, many of Hamilton’s students have worked with faculty over the years to create custom-designed concentrations in data science.

“Employers don’t just want workhorses; they need people who can think with data. Our data science degrees develop the right amount of technical expertise as well as other skills that are essential to our modern world.”

“I remember when I first taught the Senior Seminar in Statistics in 2012, we only had five students. Now, our statistics seminars go on at full capacity, sometimes with over-enrollment. So clearly the students are pulled into the area,” Kuruvita said.

To support the growing program, the college plans to hire a faculty member specializing in machine learning in 2023.

According to Kuruvita, the new major is designed not only for students who intend to become data science experts, but also for those who are concerned with the power of data science as a tool, which can be used as their primary May progress in an area of interest, whether it is physics, chemistry, public health, climate science, sociology, economics, or the humanities, among many others.

“As a data scientist, your job is not to focus on the core question you’re trying to answer. That’s exactly why we wanted to have an ‘applied domain’ element in the program so that [students] can build intuition specific to those domains,” he said. “So when it’s Showtime — when they’re actually analyzing data from that domain — they’re well equipped from both sides: technical skills and domain knowledge.”

In his years at Hamilton, Kuruvita said he has seen some amazing work done by his students in the field of data science and is looking forward to when the first group of data science majors will present their senior projects in four years. .

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