Expand Your Knowledge in Data Analytics
Apr 12, 2021
Like many professionals, Alan Burrow (MBA 2003) found himself seeking to upgrade his skill set mid-career. Burrow is the executive director of district and school performance for the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE). “My work with the MDE has led to a heavy focus on analytics and the need for me to effectively direct the analytic work of my department,” Burrow said. “While I have an MBA from Millsaps and have worked in public policy for 13 years, I felt I needed to gain additional tools to aid in my work.”
Burrow entered the Millsaps College Data Analytics Graduate Certificate Program in the fall of 2020. His goal was to learn current analytical software and tools that would give him confidence to do more robust analysis and visualization of the data collected and reported by his office. “Learning R and Tableau has helped me to be less reliant on other staff and contractors for my analytics,” he said.
Taking class while working full-time has been a challenge, Burrow said, but worth it. “Although there has been a lot of material to learn in such a short period, I feel the expectations have been reasonable and have fit well with my work schedule. The classes are structured in such a way as to provide a broad level of knowledge of analytics. Although the pace of the program is fast, classwork and projects are reasonable and effective in ensuring a strong comprehension of the material.
“The program has certainly exceeded my expectations. I have grown so much through this experience and learned much more than I expected when I signed up. This program offers a great opportunity to be exposed to the expanding field of analytics, whether you are a practitioner or a manager who works with others well versed in analytics.”