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"Anybody can learn to write code. There are a zillion learning sources on the internet. A zillion. What makes a good data scientist is critical and creative thinking as well as effective communication." – Taryn Morris
What has an undergrad, Honors, two MSCs, a PhD, and and postdoc in the sciences? We know, it reads like the start of a bad joke, but Taryn Morris' list of accomplishments is no laughing matter.
After spending 15 years in academia, Taryn transitioned into the world of data science consultancy, and has been pretty much kicking ass ever since; all while continuing to teach and mentor wherever she can. We did an air-punch when she agreed to come back to teach our Data Science class of 2020, and that's not just because she also happens to be an airbender who could probably slice anything in half with her mad frisbee skills.
Taryn Morris, iXperience 2020 Data Science Head Teacher
Instead of having a specific focus, my work entails working on all kinds of different projects and problems. To me, this is the most exciting part of it, because I am constantly learning new skills or about different sectors.
One part of my work that I enjoy is the upskilling of in-house staff at the company’s we are work with to be able to read, run and even write code for themselves. Leaving someone new empowered and excited by data science on each project is a real win.
It is always advancing, so there is always something to learn and skills to grow.
I’ve always said if I won the lottery I would just go to school forever. So I suppose in a way data science is like winning the lottery :)
Taryn with her son, Noah
I enjoyed the student’s immense joy and pride at the end of the course at having produced brilliant and valuable pieces of work during their internships. The realization that they could now “data science” was fantastic. I learnt everyone has different strengths, a good teacher should try to unearth these and let them bedazzle.
New people, new stories, new adventures. Anybody can learn to write code. There are a zillion learning sources on the internet. A zillion. What makes a good data scientist is critical and creative thinking as well as effective communication. This summer, I hope to integrate exercising these skills a little more into our coding sessions.
There will be a lot more automation of data science and machine learning tasks. This is why it is critical for up and coming data scientists to focus on a broader range of skills other than coding.
Students will be able to critically assess a problem, creatively construct a solution, elegantly code, and effectively communicate the valuable insights. We will be focusing on the whole package.
Don’t be afraid to say I don’t know, or I’m struggling. Chances are five other people are feeling the same way. And there is ALWAYS help at hand.
I represented South Africa for the SA Ultimate Frisbee Women’s team in the World Champs 2016 in London. I have also been to Antarctica!
Does Twinkle Twinkle count? Okay fine, Vanilla Ice - Ice Ice Baby.