Jonathan Powell, an undergraduate at Weatherhead School of Management, was looking for an opportunity to dive deeper into data science and gain more real-world experience before entering the job market. After weighing his options, the Integrated Business Analytics and Intelligence program seemed like the perfect fit.
We caught up with Jon, who will be completing his bachelor’s this May and finishing the Integrated program in May 2022, and chatted about his experience at Weatherhead.
Question: Why did you decide to remain at Weatherhead for your master's?
Answer: I decided to stay at Weatherhead for my master’s program because I could finish the Business Analytics coursework in just a fifth year rather than having to stay and pay for a fifth and sixth year. I also know I want to pursue a career in marketing or operations analytics and found that the Business Analytics program is really centered around those two fields. After talking with my advisors and a lot of the faculty, it made the most sense for me to gain more skills from this program and gain more experience from another summer of interning before entering the job market.
Question: When did you decide to pursue the Integrated Business Analytics program? Why did you decide to pursue it?
Answer: I decided to pursue the Integrated Business Analytics program about a year ago while I was home for the beginning part of the pandemic. I felt that I did not have the chance to dive into as many data science topics as I would have liked to while completing my minor in applied data science. I found that the Business Analytics program would allow me to dive deeper into data science while applying the methods in a business setting. In addition, I found myself unsure of my skillset for entering the job market and found that because of the pandemic, the job market was very weak. The Business Analytics program is giving me the opportunity to build my resumé even more with another summer of interning while delaying the job search process for another year.
Question: What value do you think the integrated program gives you as a student and soon as a professional?
Answer: The integrated program gives me an opportunity to stand out with a strong background in various business facets while also having the technical skills to code and perform data analysis. This is a rapidly rising skillset to have as business analytics are driving companies to make smarter, faster, and better decisions to improve their businesses and stay ahead of the competition. My courses have been based around projects and assignments that are realistic for business analysts or similar jobs to take on. These have given me strong talking points for interviews and have allowed me to understand the skills and techniques necessary for my career path!
Question: Where is your internship at?
Answer: I will be interning remotely for Pendo.io out of their headquarters in Raleigh, North Carolina. I will be on the Customer Success team taking on projects working with data analysis and surveying in order to assist with customer-related demands. There are a wide range of projects that this team takes on, and I am very excited to join this fast-paced environment working on various tasks.
Question: What would you tell a fellow student who is considering any Integrated program but is on the fence about it?
Answer: I think that understanding what skills the coursework will help you gain is the most important factor to consider. As an undergraduate student, sometimes it can be hard to find the coursework that you are passionate for and want to pursue, especially as a first and second-year student. This can leave students crammed for space in their schedule later on in school to gain all the knowledge and skills that they have found to be the most fascinating for their intended career path. Going into an integrated program where you know the set coursework and understand the very specific program you are going into can help regain that ability to dive deep into certain topics that you could not get to in your undergraduate degree.
Learn more about the integrated programs offered at Weatherhead.