Data science, analytics now in more schools

WITH colleges and universities in Davao City to offer Data Science and Analytics as part of the college curriculum, the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Davao is optimistic that it will be a good training ground for college students to diversify and upgrade their skills in preparation for employment.

In an interview with ICT Davao president lawyer Samuel Matunog, he said that even when construction-related jobs are the most in-demand careers locally because of the Build, Build, Build program, business process outsourcing (BPO)-related jobs are also still very much in demand although recruitment is quite challenging nowadays because of the fresh graduates’ lack of proper training and experience.

“BPO work is still in-demand. You just have to be in the right niches. The challenge is how to fill them up. There is so much demand for BPO-IT work but to qualify for these jobs, you have to have proper training and experience and unfortunately it is not easy to gain training and experience for these jobs,” she said.

In an effort to early train these future jobseekers, Matunog said about two to three colleges and universities in the city have started embedding Data Science and Analytics in their curriculum while the other schools would follow suit within the next three to five years as well. This means that not only those whose courses are into computer studies will have the chance to study Data Science and Analytics but every single one of the students as well.

“The schools will be working with the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) to enhance their respective curriculum. As this will be available for all courses, curriculum mapping is essential to make sure the subjects are also well-balanced,” said Matunog.

He said Data Science and Analytics will allow the students to learn working with data. He cited as an example that a tourism student enrolled in this subject will be able to read flight and tourist frequency data and would be able to correlate with the other data as needed by the office or the company he or she is supposed to be working for in the future.

Matunog said students were able to take Data Science and Analytics will have an edge against graduates who weren’t able to. Still on the tourism example, he said it is a much apparent edge that the graduate knows how to prepare, gather, interpret, and analyze data reports aside from the usual work of a tourism graduate such as welcoming the guests, manning reception desks, or supervising a tours and travel agency as specific examples.

“Companies want to know what’s happening [through the data] and it would be an edge for the graduates if they can also do that,” he said.

Matunog said this benefit applies to all college courses offered in the city hence the plan to have it implemented in the school’s curriculum in the future. He, however, said that subject would need very good machine that will utilize proper algorithm as well as qualified faculty members to teach.


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