From veterinary studies in China, to machine learning algorithms in Detroit, this two-time Nanodegree program graduate has been on a remarkable career journey.
Xi Palazzolo was going to be a veterinarian. She completed her training in China, then moved to the US to study for a Master’s in Epidemiology. She planned to practice when she graduated. But her hopes were dashed when she discovered few clinics were willing to sponsor her work visa. What was she going to do? She had to find something else, in a different field entirely.
Fate intervened when Xi met her future husband. They moved to Detroit for his job, and she found a role at a university, evaluating the impact of the institution’s programs. She enjoyed the work, but she wanted more for her career.
She sat down with her husband and took a hard look at her situation. What transferable skills did she have? What investments of time and money would different career paths require? What fields genuinely excited her? Data was the answer for Xi, so she started working to build her skills. She enrolled in the Data Analyst Nanodegree program, and started learning the programming languages—like R and Python—she’d need to succeed in the field.
We’re happy to share that Xi recently landed a new role in data, and what’s more, she’s graduated from a second Nanodegree program in Machine Learning! We spoke with her to hear about how she landed an amazing new job in an industry she loves.
Vidya Thandra Satyanarayana pointed to an office building, and told her father she’d work there one day. She was right.
Vidya Thandra Satyanarayana was told from an early age not to take chances in her life. There were health-related reasons for this, but it was still hard news to hear, particularly for a young girl in India with dreams of education and a career in her future.
The years ahead would bring additional challenges, including a move to another country, and a ten-year gap in her work experience. But nothing could stop her, and today, this Udacity graduate is working at what she describes as a “dream company” in her adopted hometown of St. Louis, Missouri.
This is her story.
As a lifelong learner, your journey of discovery is ongoing. To ensure you’re able to make the best choices to achieve your unique life and career goals, our Nanodegree programs are organized into schools that offer clear roadmaps to success.
Is there such a thing as too much choice? When it comes to learning, we don’t think so. But, having a wide range of learning options at your disposal can make charting your own path to career success complicated. Each of us brings a unique set of skills and experience to the table, each of us has our own unique sense of work values, and each of us aims to represent a unique value to prospective employers. But even with a clear end goal in sight, it can be challenging to determine what exactly you need to do to reach your career goals.
With 30 different Nanodegree programs available, Udacity offers a wide range of learning opportunities. But how do you know what to take, and when to take it?
That’s where Udacity’s “Schools” can help!
Eric Persson completed a Master’s in Industrial Engineering and Management five years ago. When he graduated, he considered enrolling in Udacity’s Data Analyst Nanodegree program, because data had become a real passion for him. At the same time, he’d just spent five years studying to become an engineer—not a data scientist—so Eric decided to follow through on the career path he’d already started.
Five years later, Eric had a great engineering job and was working in Tokyo. He liked his job, but he hadn’t shaken his interest in data. He looked again at the Data Analyst Nanodegree program and, this time, he enrolled. Right before he graduated, he landed an exceptional data scientist role with a company back home in Sweden. Now he is elated to say that he has the career he first dreamt of when he left university! This is how it happened:
The numbers paint a pretty compelling picture, and all the press articles certainly add to the sense of excitement. Everywhere you look, there’s another story about the incredible demand for skilled data scientists. Just two weeks ago, a story from Bloomberg noted that job listings for data scientists on Indeed.com have increased 75% in just three years. Glassdoor has named Data Scientist the best job in the U.S. three years in a row. IBM is predicting a demand increase of nearly 30% in the next two years.
In short, it is an incredible time to become a Data Scientist.
That’s easier said than done, of course. But that’s where Udacity comes in. No matter where your skills and experience are today, we offer a point-of-entry into the world of data, and at Udacity, every data learning path ends with you being ready for success in the field.
Whether you want to master data science programming with Python and SQL, launch a Data Analyst career, or explore business and predictive analytics, Udacity offers world-class programs, expert instructors, and the opportunity to start building relevant skills right away. We’ve partnered with industry leaders like Tableau, Kaggle, and IBM Watson, to ensure you’re learning the in-demand skills recruiters and hiring managers are looking for.
In this post, I’ll walk you through all the Nanodegree programs in our School of Data Science. I’ll show you what each covers, make clear how they connect, and help you choose the program that’s right for you. In the process, I’ll describe the projects you’ll build, and the skills you’ll learn.
Let’s get started!