Data Science is a new, burgeoning area of study and practice that has developed in response to the generation and collection of massive amounts of data in our society. Large employers across all sectors are now recognizing the need for collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data in their operations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 11.5 million Data Science jobs will be created between 2019-2026, much greater than the average for all occupations. This has created a demand for skilled data scientists in all areas. Graduates of this new degree program will learn the mathematical theory and computing techniques necessary to be successful practitioners in this new field. The program also emphasizes computer programming, data manipulation, and an elective domain specialization such as aviation, business, or engineering. Graduates will be fully prepared to enter careers as Data Scientists, Market Research Analysts, and Applied Statisticians, or to pursue advanced degrees.
As of 2018, tech companies such as Google and Amazon were the largest employers of data scientists. Then, 44% of data scientists were employed by tech companies. As the recognition of the need for these skills spreads, so does the diverse range of employment opportunities. The enormous amount of raw data gathered has created a demand for analysts capable of extracting value from the data for both the airline industry as well as for the health care industry. IBM has also seen significant employment sectors opening in finance, insurance, and professional services.
Students should have an interest in computing and technology, as well as applying quantitative methods to solve practical problems. The most effective students will also have another area of interest to which they would like to apply their knowledge, such as Business, Aeronautical Engineering, Physics, Global Security and Intelligence, Meteorology, Air Traffic Management, Safety Science, or others. A data scientist is an important member of a team, and so prospective students should have an interest in developing as collaborators and communicators, interfacing with both technical and non-technical roles, and in particular creating vivid narratives centered on factual evidence.
About Data Science at the Prescott, AZ Campus
The Bachelor of Science in Data Science, housed within the Department of Mathematics in the College of Arts and Sciences, is all about hands-on learning. All courses will be project-based and structured around acquiring skills to answer questions about the real world. The cross-application to industry, government, and research settings are immediate. Students can expect to perform meaningful work throughout their undergraduate experience. This will be facilitated by the small-campus atmosphere, state-of-the-art lab facilities, and faculty with industry experience.
Embry-Riddle has developed strategic strengths in select disciplines. At the Prescott campus, this includes Aeronautical Engineering, Space Physics (where we have a LIGO collaborator group), Global Security and Intelligence Studies, Applied Meteorology, Air Traffic Management, Safety Science, and more. A data scientist creates value for a company by possessing data analysis skills and being steeped in the domain knowledge. Embry-Riddle Prescott’s B.S. in Data Science offers students a unique educational experience of pairing the data science skillset with a depth of knowledge in one of our many specialized domains, collaborating side-by-side with faculty from each of these fields.
The university recently constructed the STEM Education Center which houses several new computer laboratories where elements of this program will be conducted. The program will make use of the Jim and Linda Lee Planetarium for project presentations and will share the SSGA lab for classroom and lab space.
Embry-Riddle’s Prescott Campus is located in a small city with four seasons and some of the best hiking/mountain biking trails in the world. Prescott is within driving distance of Phoenix, Las Vegas, and southern California. The scenic natural beauty of Prescott makes for an ideal location to live and study. Our small campus atmosphere creates an ideal learning environment in which students interact closely with our faculty, enhancing their educational experience.