Data analytics graduate program ranks nationally

Published by , Author: Adam Zook - Rocket Contributor , Date: February 22, 2017
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The SRU data analytics graduate program was recently ranked as one of the top programs nationally by College Choice, an independent publication that helps students to find the college that best suits their interests.

Christy Crute, associate professor of mathematics and statistics at SRU, is the graduate coordinator for the data analytics program, a field she has experience in, having worked for companies like General Electric and Ingersoll Rand.

“This program is meant to teach professionals how to interpret and interact with data and apply that data to real life scenarios,” Crute said. “We cover a broad spectrum of fields so that our students are best prepared when they get out into the work force.”

The graduate program was in the developmental stage in 2015, but was added a program in fall 2016 when there was a rise in popularity surrounding data analytics as a career choice. Crute said 35 students are currently enrolled in the program.

Crute said that, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, from 2014-2024, the job market for those pursuing a career in data analytics will increase by 19 percent.

“Think about how much data one person can put out over the course of one day,” Crute said. “Every text you send, product you buy online and every time you scroll through your Twitter feed, you are contributing to a data set that companies will analyze to improve their business,” Crute said.

Crute said that larger corporations like Amazon and IBM use data analysts to figure out how to best cater to consumers and increase profit margins over time. Professional sports teams are also expanding their use of data analysis in order to figure out when players will perform their best, depending on variables like location and weather.

Crute said that the program at SRU is cutting-edge and recognizes the importance of the career field to a wide spectrum of companies and the expanding job market for college graduates. Crute said that the practical nature of the course also helps the program to rank higher.

“Our grad students are interacting with real numbers and attempting to answer real problems with the data they have,” Crute said. “This allows them to be better prepared when they head out into the workforce where they can be a real asset to whatever company decides to hire them.”

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