Breadcrumb

Success Stories

    All
    Rocketbrew founders
    Heid Ye and Rachel Wong, MDS Vancouver Alumnae, Class of 2021, started Rocketbrew the day after MDS ended. Rocketbrew is an ecommerce dashboard for benchmarking competitors.
    Matt Emery

    Matt Emery was part of the very first cohort of the MDS Vancouver program, graduating in 2017. Upon graduating, Emery soon landed a data scientist role with Imbellus eventually becoming a senior data scientist.

    Since we last checked in with Emery, Imbellus was acquired by Roblox, a global platform bringing millions of people together through shared experiences, and is now a senior data scientist there.

    Emery develops assessments that help Roblox identify and hire great talent. 

    Ela Bandari Header

    It was during her undergraduate degree in behavioural neuroscience at UBC where Ela Bandari was introduced to the world of experimental design and data analysis. Seeing this world led Bandari to the UBC Master of Data Science program, as she saw it to be the perfect opportunity to further her understanding of these topics.

    “MDS was a perfect combination of all of my academic interests. I also strongly value learning and working in a collaborative setting and MDS’ emphasis on community and collaboration aligned with my personal values and learning preferences,” said Bandari.

    UBC Vancouver Campus

    As part of the first cohort of the UBC Master of Data Science in Computational Linguistics (MDS-CL) program, Ilana Zimmerman looks back in awe of all that was covered during the 10-month program.

    “I am currently in a Natural Language Processing role focused on machine learning and more specifically deep learning,” said Zimmerman. “I feel extremely grateful to [the MDS teaching team] for covering both traditional and deep learning approaches to a variety of NLP problems.”

    Tanmay Sharma Banner

    Before Tanmay Sharma embarked on a data science career, he started out his professional life as a Hardware Development Engineer of SSD drives at a leading global data storage company. It was during this time that Sharma’s interest in data science was piqued. 

    Sharma explained that he was seeing the explosion of big data and the increased use of machine learning and artificial intelligence across all industries and its profound impact on transforming global businesses. 

    Selma Duric Banner

    Prior to entering the MDS Vancouver program, Selma Durić was working as a senior accountant where much of her accounting work relied on data. “I realized that there was a lot of potential value that I could bring by being able to work with data. I also began to notice the limitations of spreadsheets and conventional accounting software and knew there had to be a better approach.” 

    Juan and his dog Frieda

    Back in 2017, Juan Roesel worked as an innovation consultant helping corporations fast-track digital transformation processes by partnering with tech start-ups. Some of these start-ups were using Artificial Intelligence solutions, so Roesel needed to understand them to frame the right integration approach with the businesses' value chains. 

    Darya Shyroka Banner Image

    It was a desire in wanting to use her programming skills to work with language data that led Darya Shyroka to pursue a data science career.

    “I was always interested in languages and linguistics, but I did not see myself as a translator or language instructor. I have an analytical mind, and I knew that using my skills in mathematics and programming to analyze language could be really interesting,” said Shyroka.

    UBC Okanagan campus 2

    As a quality assurance coordinator with a major manufacturing company specializing in geosynthetic and medical products, Rain Shen often poured through historical data that was not easy to decipher, nor easy to process.

    “I realized I needed to learn new data analytical techniques to analyze large amount of data,” said Shen. “I found myself becoming really interested in data analysis. I was amazed how the data can help solve complex problems in the real world.”

    UBC Okanagan campus

    As a senior water resources engineer, Nathan Smith has been working with data his entire career.

    Prior to joining UBCO’s Master of Data Science program, Smith plied his trade at an engineering consulting firm, first collecting stream flow data in the BC Coastal Mountains before moving onto data analysis and modelling, along with managing data collection programs. 

    Rocketbrew founders
    Heid Ye and Rachel Wong, MDS Vancouver Alumnae, Class of 2021, started Rocketbrew the day after MDS ended. Rocketbrew is an ecommerce dashboard for benchmarking competitors.
    Matt Emery

    Matt Emery was part of the very first cohort of the MDS Vancouver program, graduating in 2017. Upon graduating, Emery soon landed a data scientist role with Imbellus eventually becoming a senior data scientist.

    Since we last checked in with Emery, Imbellus was acquired by Roblox, a global platform bringing millions of people together through shared experiences, and is now a senior data scientist there.

    Emery develops assessments that help Roblox identify and hire great talent. 

    Ela Bandari Header

    It was during her undergraduate degree in behavioural neuroscience at UBC where Ela Bandari was introduced to the world of experimental design and data analysis. Seeing this world led Bandari to the UBC Master of Data Science program, as she saw it to be the perfect opportunity to further her understanding of these topics.

    “MDS was a perfect combination of all of my academic interests. I also strongly value learning and working in a collaborative setting and MDS’ emphasis on community and collaboration aligned with my personal values and learning preferences,” said Bandari.

    UBC Vancouver Campus

    As part of the first cohort of the UBC Master of Data Science in Computational Linguistics (MDS-CL) program, Ilana Zimmerman looks back in awe of all that was covered during the 10-month program.

    “I am currently in a Natural Language Processing role focused on machine learning and more specifically deep learning,” said Zimmerman. “I feel extremely grateful to [the MDS teaching team] for covering both traditional and deep learning approaches to a variety of NLP problems.”

    Tanmay Sharma Banner

    Before Tanmay Sharma embarked on a data science career, he started out his professional life as a Hardware Development Engineer of SSD drives at a leading global data storage company. It was during this time that Sharma’s interest in data science was piqued. 

    Sharma explained that he was seeing the explosion of big data and the increased use of machine learning and artificial intelligence across all industries and its profound impact on transforming global businesses. 

    Selma Duric Banner

    Prior to entering the MDS Vancouver program, Selma Durić was working as a senior accountant where much of her accounting work relied on data. “I realized that there was a lot of potential value that I could bring by being able to work with data. I also began to notice the limitations of spreadsheets and conventional accounting software and knew there had to be a better approach.” 

    Juan and his dog Frieda

    Back in 2017, Juan Roesel worked as an innovation consultant helping corporations fast-track digital transformation processes by partnering with tech start-ups. Some of these start-ups were using Artificial Intelligence solutions, so Roesel needed to understand them to frame the right integration approach with the businesses' value chains. 

    Darya Shyroka Banner Image

    It was a desire in wanting to use her programming skills to work with language data that led Darya Shyroka to pursue a data science career.

    “I was always interested in languages and linguistics, but I did not see myself as a translator or language instructor. I have an analytical mind, and I knew that using my skills in mathematics and programming to analyze language could be really interesting,” said Shyroka.

    UBC Okanagan campus 2

    As a quality assurance coordinator with a major manufacturing company specializing in geosynthetic and medical products, Rain Shen often poured through historical data that was not easy to decipher, nor easy to process.

    “I realized I needed to learn new data analytical techniques to analyze large amount of data,” said Shen. “I found myself becoming really interested in data analysis. I was amazed how the data can help solve complex problems in the real world.”

    UBC Okanagan campus

    As a senior water resources engineer, Nathan Smith has been working with data his entire career.

    Prior to joining UBCO’s Master of Data Science program, Smith plied his trade at an engineering consulting firm, first collecting stream flow data in the BC Coastal Mountains before moving onto data analysis and modelling, along with managing data collection programs. 

    Kelowna

    For Samuel Vélez, three years of working in finance opened his eyes to how data can shape the future of industries and companies.

    “The data-driven organizations are the ones pushing ahead, making the most out of the huge amounts of data available today,” explained Vélez. “I wanted to be part of that and help as much as I could.”

    Celine Liu header image

    It was during her undergrad internships at Microsoft and Hootsuite that Celine Liu witnessed the tremendous impact and potential that modern AI could have over solving global societal and business challenges.

    UBC Vancouver Campus

    Two other MDS teams place in top 6 out of 14 teams

    Recently, the UBC Master of Data Science (MDS) program partnered with Simon Fraser University (SFU) and Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) to host a three-day online hackathon entitled “Integrity Hackathon: Canadian Companies Deep Dive”.

    During this competition, UBC and SFU student teams of programmers and data analysts were tasked to solve a real-world challenge and present their solutions to ESDC employees. A total 14 teams made of 3-5 members competed (seven from UBC and seven from SFU).

    Mark Wang Hackathon win

    MDS Program Plays Pivotal Role in Win

    When Mark Wang, MDS Vancouver student, Class of 2021, heard about the Data Open West Coast Regional Datathon from MDS Career Advisor, Angela Pau, he knew that it would provide him with valuable experience and he credits the MDS program in playing a role in his success in the Datathon.

    The Data Open challenges students from the world's best universities to tackle real-world social challenges in topics such as urban traffic, renewable energy, and education.  

    Welcome Class of 2021

    Earlier this month, we welcomed the latest cohorts for the MDS Vancouver, Okanagan and Computational Linguistics programs.

    Students joined us from across the globe and several time zones over Zoom as they got to know each other and the MDS team.

    While the COVID-19 outbreak has forced the MDS program to move temporarily online, we are still happy to welcome our fifth! MDS Vancouver cohort, the third MDS Okanagan cohort and the second MDS Computational Linguistics cohort.

    Let’s get to know the MDS Class of 2021.

    UBC Okanagan Campus

    It was during her undergraduate studies where Kaitlyn Hobbs developed a true appreciation for data science. While completing her biochemistry degree, Hobbs often found herself favouring dry labs involving statistical analysis and introductory programming. After completing her thesis in comparing biome classification software efficacy, Hobbs thought it only natural to follow her interests and pursue formal data science learning.

    okanagan campus

    An avid learner who enjoys working in interdisciplinary and diverse settings, Swapil Paliwal’s interest in the education field led him to a job within the analytics team at Apex Learning, an online education company in Seattle. His subsequent role as full-time Data Scientist exposed him to the enormous value, challenges, and applications of data analytics in multiple areas of the business.

    UBC Vancouver Campus, Main Mall

    It was during her time working as a data analyst at Nigerian start-up that opened up Chidera Okoma’s eyes to the world of data science.

    “It helped me see the impact of data insight in decision making,” she explained.

    Cari Gostic

    Prior to deciding to do a Master of Data Science degree from UBC, Cari Gostic planned on pursuing a PhD in climate studies but after 4 years of studies and a couple of summer research internships she decided that a Doctorate wasn’t the right path.

    “I don’t think I would be very happy focusing on a single, niche topic for years,” Gostic said.

    Toshiko

    As a professional translator, Toshiko Shibano has always been interested in machine translation. In particular, she wanted to know how linguistic data were processed in deep learning models and wanted to be able to test out her hypotheses about how to improve current machine translation models.

    Prior to joining the UBC MDS Computational Linguistics (CL) program, Shibano ran a translation business in Japan that specialized in financial accounting for almost 20 years.

    Rob Blumberg

    It was his passion for soccer that Rob Blumberg first encountered the world of data science.

    “I was particularly interested in learning about these models and algorithms that were capable of uncovering meaningful insights about soccer games from data which did not seem to contain obvious patterns,” he explained.

    Totem Field Studios

    After completing his undergraduate degree in computer science from Vancouver Island University, Ravi Gill was fully committed in moving directly into the workforce. However, Gill’s senior undergrad project involved using machine learning to look at social media metadata over time (number of likes, shares, etc…) and try to predict the next most popular musician.

    This project led to an 8-month co-op with TELUS which focused heavily on machine learning and text processing.

    UBC Vancouver Campus, Earth Sciences Building

    Before Reiko Okamoto entered the UBC Master of Data Science program, she was pursuing a Master’s of Science in Public Health at Lund University in Sweden. It was during this program where her interest in data science was first sparked.

    Rendered

    In our final part of our blog series , we focus in on skill #3: Time Management

    In parts 1 and 2, I went over knowing yourself as a learner and tackled your

    3 skills you need as a data science student

    In part 2 of a 3-part blog series, we tackle skill #2: Problem Solving

    In part 1, I outlined the importance of knowing yourself as a learner. In Part 2 of our series on the three skills you need as a data science student, we move on to …

    Skill #2 – Problem-solving

    skills

    In part 1 of a 3-part blog series, we focus on skill #1: Know yourself

    Having been admitted to the intensive UBC Master's of Data Science Computational Linguistics (CL) program, students are going to undertake 96 lab assignments, 42 quizzes, 192 lab hours, and 288 lecture hours. Two years of courses are compressed into 10 months. Those numbers highlight the anticipation I felt when I joined the program last September 2019. As a new graduate from a business bachelor’s degree with minimum experience in data science, I was accepted into the UBC MDS CL program.

    Mohsen Zardadi and his family

    The first MDS Okanagan graduate to get a job

    Students choose graduate studies for a number of reasons.

    For some, their chosen profession requires it, while others want to change career paths or advance more quickly in their current roles. Many others want to conduct high-level research in an area close to their hearts or one that can change the world.

    Learning Remotely. Photo by Martin Dee / UBC Brand & Marketing

    Read how our MDS students have adjusted to learning MDS online.

    In an ideal world, our MDS students would be learning in-person amongst their cohort but the COVID-19 outbreak has forced post-secondary institutions like UBC to move classes online.

    We spoke to a few of our MDS students from the Class of 2020 on how they’ve adjusted to learning data science online.

    Q: How have you been adjusting to learning online?

    MDS Okanagan Student to Healthcare Hero

    MDS Okanagan student drops the books, dons medical gear amid COVID-19 outbreak

    Ngan Nguyen Lyle was studying for an upcoming data science quiz when she got the call.

    Lyle, a Master of Data Science (MDS), student at UBC Okanagan and medical doctor, was being summoned to return to work to support Interior Health’s COVID-19 response team.

    MDS Spotlight

    The COVID-19 outbreak has forced many institutions like UBC to move all classes online. The UBC Master of Data Science (MDS) program was no exception and has been teaching online since March 16.

    To move to this new way of teaching, the MDS team used a variety of online tools like Collaborate Ultra and Zoom for lectures. Slack and GitHub to communicate with students and Canvas to administer exams.

    We spoke to a few of our MDS teaching staff to see how they’ve adjusted to this new way of teaching and lessons learned.

    2019-20 cohorts

    Last week, we welcomed our next set of cohorts for MDS Vancouver and Okanagan as well as the very first cohort of the MDS Computational Linguistics program.

    It is exciting to see the MDS program grow year-over-year. When the program began in 2016, we started with just 22 students, which then increased to 43 for year 2 and 70 students in year 3.

    We are proud to see the program welcome 97 new students as the fourth cohort of MDS-Vancouver.

    Here are some facts about MDS Vancouver - Cohort 4:

    Ayla Pearson, MDS Vancouver - Class of 2019

    As a resource clerk based on Haida Gwaii with the forestry branch of the Province of British Columbia, Ayla Pearson is a Jack of all trades doing everything from issuing permits for forestry companies to administration assistance for First Nations consultation to front end reception to hardware tech support. It was while doing all of those tasks that Pearson noticed how disorganized was its data integrity.

    “That’s when I started realizing what I wanted to do with the data with that job,” said Pearson.

    Heather Van Tassel

    As Heather Van Tassel was completing her biochemistry and neuroscience degree at the University of British Columbia, she took a biostatistics course which became her doorway into data science.

    "What I appreciate the most about data science and what drove me to return to school is that having an analytical skill set will allow me to think more critically at work, which is both challenging and rewarding,” said Van Tassel.

    A UBC Master of Data Science (MDS) alumna and one of her UBC professors encouraged Van Tassel to take the MDS program.

    Birinder Singh

    Falling oil prices is what prompted Birinder Singh to start thinking of ways to optimize how his company was handling client data and utilizing it in a better way.

    “Traditionally there was a lot of redundant tasks that we were doing and we were missing the integration of data from different sources. I saw that if we apply machine learning algorithms into it we could do some predictive analysis and generate some insights as well.”

    Carrie Cheung

    While analyzing aircraft sensor data for Boeing Vancouver, opened Carrie Cheung eyes were to a world where programming and math can be applied to data to solve business problems. 

    “This experience sparked my interest to grow my knowledge about data science in a way that's also more structured and immersive,” said Cheung.

    To gain the data science knowledge that Cheung was seeking, she took the plunge and applied to the UBC Master of Data Science (MDS) program.

    MDS Vancouver Students Win

    For companies like Vancouver’s Kabam, a developer of immersive, and highly social multiplayer games for mobile devices, it relies heavily on digital advertising for promotion and user advertising to generate revenue. 

    In conjunction with UBC Sauder School of Business, the Kabam Games Varsity Challenge was to create a predictive model that estimates the value of users for one of Kabam’s hit games.

    MDS Spotlight: Improving Patient Communication through AI

    UBC MDS Vancouver Students Win EasyMarkit Hackathon

    How can you use artificial intelligence to help improve patient communication? That was the challenge put forth to teams that participated in EasyMarkit’s first hackathon held on April 6, 2019. EasyMarkit is a Vancouver-based company that focuses on developing automated patient communication software specializing in dentistry.

    EasyMarkit was looking for a way to make the process of booking appointments a lot easier. Teams were given clinic data and were tasked to see how likely patients were to respond to an appointment reminder phone call or text message.

    Vancouver Whitecaps FC

    Capstone Partner Profile

    Vancouver Whitecaps FC is utilizing data science to inform decisions across several areas of Soccer Operations, including decisions about athletes’ physical preparation, injury prevention, return to sport, player identification/scouting, performance analysis, and opposition scouting.
    TBooth

    Capstone Partner Profile

    As a retail company, GLENTEL has a large amount of transactional data from sales, employee and customer details and opinions. The organization incorporated aspects of data science in reporting and building of data marts where traditional methods wouldn’t be able to handle the scope of the data. GLENTEL recently partnered with a team from UBC MDS program to develop a model to identify keywords in resumes which correlate with employee performance.