Classes for UNC's new Master's of Applied Data Science program, which aims to provide graduate students and working professionals with the ability to advance their knowledge in data science, will begin in January 2024.
To launch this new, primarily online degree, UNC partnered with The Graduate School, the UNC Office of Digital and Lifelong Learning and 2U, an online education company.
“To me, the most important aspect of this is that it allows people who are currently in the workforce to have the options of either adding another degree to their resume or to just get some classes,” Stanley Ahalt, dean of the UNC School of Data Science and Society, said.
Ahalt said that there are many people who are looking to improve their resume and can benefit financially from developing their data science skills.
Students in the MADS program will have a choice in how they complete this degree. The School of Data Science and Society will offer both live and asynchronous classes.
Arcot Rajasekar will be teaching an introductory course for advanced data science for the new program. Rajasekar is a current UNC professor for the School of Information and Library Science and one of the chief scientists at the Renaissance Computing Institute.
“This is for people who are already in the industry and who would like to find new types of tools and techniques and methodologies which are useful for them to deal with their data problems,” Rajasekar said.
Rajasekar said that students will gain the proper skills for approaching current and future technology through this program.
"Data science is becoming really important, in a sense, as they call it, 'Data is the new currency,'" he said. "And if you want to deal with data and do large data, what is called big data, you need to have the proper tools to do that."