Bryant University Gives Data Mining Students a Leg Up in a Tough Job Market
Bryant University's Dr. Alan Olinsky knows exactly how to entice students to take applied statistics – show them the online job postings for companies seeking data mining professionals. "While giving a presentation to incoming students, I went to an online job site and searched for SAS® jobs. There were 1,400 hits and this was when the job market was pretty tight.''
With SAS OnDemand for Academics, it's now even easier for his students to get the education they need to find jobs. Instead of loading SAS software onto a computer lab's server for their data mining course using SAS® Enterprise Miner™, students get to easily access the software online. As an added plus, all Bryant University students get a laptop with their paid tuition. So being able to access the software online lets them work anywhere, anytime.
Turning Students On to Statistics
Bryant also offers a certificate in SAS data mining through the Applied Mathematics and Statistics Department. Students take four courses to earn the certificate. Nearly two dozen universities around the world have consulted with SAS to offer a certificate program, designed to recognize students with advanced SAS knowledge.
Olinsky considers SAS Enterprise Miner a particularly effective tool to teach students data mining "because it is so visual. You can apply sophisticated tools without being too concerned about the math (or programming) behind some of the actual procedures."
It is also easy to learn. “My whole class was able to really get a good handle on the concept of data mining and the use of predictive modeling tools,’’ Olinsky said. The cost of a one-semester SAS OnDemand for Academics account and the training guide was less than the cost of a statistics textbook.
Making Distance Learning Easier
Whether using SAS OnDemand for Academics or from the school network, working with students in the workplace also leads to projects that help teacher and student understand the value of data mining and the need to learn how to cope with messy or missing data (rarely a problem in the classroom setting). One of Olinsky's distance student teams won a national award for the work they did studying how different types of physicians ordered and interpreted medical tests differently in an emergency room setting. It led to policy changes that improved healthcare at the company's hospitals.
Statistics: The Hot Job of the Next Decade
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Dr. Alan Olinsky, Professor of Applied Math, Bryant University
A Bryant University professor wanted to teach students data mining with a tool that many of the FORTUNE Global 500® use.
SAS OnDemand for Academics connects students to a SAS-hosted server over the Web. Students can use SAS Enterprise Miner for data mining wherever they have Internet access. There is no need for campus IT support, no cost to professors and minimal cost to students.
The user-friendly, point-and-click interface of SAS Enterprise Miner offered through SAS OnDemand for Academics makes it easy for students to learn data mining that is highly valued in an otherwise tight job market.
“When interviewers hear SAS and data mining, it's a very big plus on the resume.”
Dr. Alan Olinsky
Professor of Applied Math, Bryant University