Student Spotlight: Kyle Rossetti
Meet Kyle Rossetti:
Kyle Rossetti was a government contractor looking for a better understanding of how to make meaningful analysis of data. A year after completing the Georgetown University certificate program, he became a member of a local data science research institute and completed his first semester as an adjunct faculty member in Georgetown’s Data Science program.
Why did you choose to enroll in this program?
I’ve always had a passion for data, but as I have increasingly been utilizing data for decision making in my career, out of necessity I've had to figure out how to work smarter. I stumbled upon the field of data science a few years ago when I was speaking with a coworker about their programing experience and how they leveraged it against large data sets. That conversation certainly made me want to further explore how consumers of data can harness machine analytics on a large scale. I explored a slew of online programs, but unfortunately I am not that type of learner. I prefer a physical classroom and this ultimately led me to Georgetown University. It had all the elements I was searching for: classroom instruction, lecture hours after work, an extremely close commute, and an exemplary institutional reputation. After I obtained approval from my office to register, I was ready to commence the 4th Cohort of the program.
What’s your career story?
After university I held an internship at a defense contracting company working in I.T., mainly as a help desk assistant. Additionally, I worked on several research projects and conducted analysis on survey responses. During my time as a corporate analyst, I frequently ran into large data sets from which actionable decisions had to be drawn. It seemed to me that the best way to truly show accurate and meaningful analysis was through quickly synthesizing and visualizing that data to tell a story. One company in particular, Centurion Research, which helped federal contracting companies identify government contracts, exposed me to a vast wealth of federal data sources. Presently I am continuing to utilize those data sources successfully, particularly for competitive and market analysis.
How did you apply what you’ve learned at Georgetown on the job?
My recent focus has been engaging in data gathering and wrangling techniques, although one notable project at my current employer has been to set up automated data links between warehouse inventory and flowing that information into a project management dashboard. I certainly believe the program advanced my understanding of how data can be harnessed for any project. Being able to obtain large data sets and quickly manipulate them has been a skill that has been useful to a multitude of people within my organization as well as myself, further assisting in decision making processes. I have begun to integrate the skills I have gained in obtaining data and modeling it in such a way that I can tell a better story than previously.
What has opened up doors for you over the years?
If I had to look back at what has opened the most doors for me, I would have to say the people I've met. Being a part of various groups, both at work and in the data science community, has given me an eclectic network from which to ask questions and gain advice in my professional career. MeetUp has various meet-and-greet groups for python developers, and Data Community DC has also been a great resource for education and local events.
Did taking classes at Georgetown affect your career path? What are your goals for the future?
This is an interesting question that I've thought about a lot. Going into the program, I honestly did not expect to change my career path. My initial thoughts were towards improving my career prospects as a business analyst. As I worked through the Georgetown courses, I gained a better appreciation for the field and began to draw myself closer towards the community. After completion of the Data Science certificate, I was encouraged to apply for a research lab through one of Georgetown’s partners, District Data Labs. During the course of sixteen weeks, the DDL research group made a deep dive into entity resolution. My skill base coming out of the certificate certainly prepared me for the research, but more importantly I was able to continue to build upon that skill set at DDL, and later I was even hired as adjunct faculty for the Data Science certificate at Georgetown. There is a lot one can do within this domain, from working in health information technology, to cyber security threat analysis, but those are long term goals. For the immediate future, my goals are to continue working with DDL and continue teaching certificate students at Georgetown.
Do you have any advice for others in your field?
I would suggest that anyone interested in the data science field continually look for ways to expand their toolbox. Find areas outside your current circle. Search for research groups or attend social events. If you are not already in the data science or analytics field and are trying to break into it, develop yourself by engaging the community. If you have any need for consuming and analyzing data, then I would emphasize the importance of the field of data science. You will find it very rewarding.