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News

Innovative data science major now available

By River Finnegan

November 18, 2020

In the newest wave of additions to the Carthage curriculum, data science is now offered as a major in addition to the existing minor, preparing graduates for opportunities in a contemporary field that is in high demand.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the demand for data science skills will drive a 27.9 percent rise in employment in the field through 2026. Jobs like machine-learning engineering, statistician positions, data analysis, and business intelligence development only scratch the surface of high salary career possibilities.

In addition to courses in data science, this interdisciplinary major offers courses in mathematics, computer science, statistics, business, and ethics. On top of the regular curriculum, students are able to develop a data science concentration in areas such as geoinformatics, environmental statistics, business analytics, and economic quantitative methods and policy analysis.

Because data science can be useful in many fields, faculty at Carthage developed data science with this in mind and created a curriculum that focuses on building technical and professional skills that are relevant to careers after graduation and beyond.

“The beauty of this program is that students from across many disciplines can be interested in data science,” said Mark Snavely, professor and chair of the Mathematics Department. “Even those who aren’t necessarily big numbers people or who didn’t always love mathematics find they can learn more about their discipline by looking at this kind of information more deeply.”

Noah Jensen ’23, a mathematics and data science double major with a concentration in actuarial science, recommends data science to anyone who loves solving problems and is mathematically inclined.

“I would say go for it if it suits your personality and mindset,” said Noah. “I’ve always loved math, numbers, and when something you create just works. If you really enjoy it when you solve something complicated and see it work with your own eyes, this is the career for you.”

For more information on the data science major, contact Professor Mark Snavely, chair of the Mathematics Department, at msnavely@carthage.edu or 262-551-5714.