SAS Curiosity Cup puts students’ real-world analytics skills to the test

Inaugural winners honored for data preparation, analysis and presentation

Are tourists flocking to the settings of their favorite Netflix shows and movies? The curious connection between the streaming service and European tourism was one of the many topics explored in the inaugural SAS Curiosity Cup.  The global data science competition, sponsored by analytics leader SAS, challenged the next generation of analytics experts to explore, analyze and learn from data on topics that inspired their curiosity.

Using SAS® software, student teams from around the world researched topics ranging from mental health and energy to entertainment and fraud. Over 90 student teams from 18 countries competed for the honor, with presentations judged by industry experts in three categories: data preparation, data analysis and data presentation.

“SAS is the founder and future of analytics. Our strong legacy underscores the former, and our commitment to empowering young minds like this year’s participants is what secures the latter,” said Lynn Letukas, Senior Director of Global Academic Programs and Certifications at SAS. “We are immensely proud of all our 2022 participants and look forward to developing and nurturing the curiosity of future data scientists for years to come.”

Curiosity Cup competitors could use free learning resources, such as SAS® Viya® for Learners or SAS OnDemand for Academics, or SAS software licensed from their university. Viya for Learners and OnDemand for Academics are available to all higher education students through SAS Skill Builder for Students, a new global program that students can access 24/7 to learn analytics skills, earn valuable certifications sought by employers, and find ways to connect with potential employment opportunities.

The champions, which are highlighted on the SAS Curiosity Cup page, were:

  • Data Preparation: Team OverSeAs from the University of Padua, Italy – Depression: Does Caregiving Put You at Risk? A European-Wide Study
  • Data Analysis: Team TheAristoSAS from the University of Bologna, Italy – Two Possible Approaches for the DASS (Depression, Anxiety and Stress) Dataset
  • Data Presentation: Team Data Campers from the IESEG School of Management, France – Influence of Netflix Shows in European Tourism

"The SAS Curiosity Cup was definitely an occasion where we grew in programming, teamwork and the ability to perform a complete analysis,” said Sara Rinaldinii, member of team TheAristoSAS. “For the first time, we had the possibility to grapple with real data and be able to outline the analysis in its entirety, without a specific assignment, deciding for ourselves the best method.”

All teams had two to four students with a faculty advisor. Teams chose their own SAS learning software, data and analytical questions for the free competition. Judges scored entries based on data preparation, analysis and presentation, in addition to subject matter knowledge. Winning teams received 12 months of free access to the SAS Academy for Data Science and a SAS digital badge acknowledging winner status.

Learn more about how SAS Academic Programs and SAS Skill Builder for Students are creating the next generation of analytics experts. Details on the 2023 competition will be available in the fall.

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The SAS Curiosity Cup, a global data science competition, challenges the next generation of analytics experts to explore, analyze and learn from data on topics that inspire their curiosity.