“Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding.” -Book of Proverbs
The quote from the book of Proverbs is one I have come to live by. I noticed the more I improved my knowledge, the better I’ve become. I’ve always believed in fairy tales including one that I am a princess and my prince charming was all I needed to be happy.
In all that blind naivety, I went to University because that’s what society demands and not because I had figured myself out.
I was 16 years old at the time and chose to study Computer Science, a choice I made due to my commendable Mathematical skills and also because I grew up around computers, I immediately assumed it to be a comfort zone.
My lack of original interest made me perform badly, I completed school with weak grades and couldn’t do much with it, also my fairy tale dreams didn’t come true and no prince charming saved me.
The months that followed my graduation were a real low point. I felt disappointed due to my bad grades and I had developed a low self esteem.
I kept to myself, had fewer friends, which I considered at the time to be a good thing for my personal and professional growth. I picked what I could from my education and general ICT usage, research and used it to start a career in tailoring that was successful to an extent.
I had about 5 clients and made over 50 outfits and a social media page with over 500 people following.
Using ICT to successfully start and manage a business got me back in love with IT. I observed while tailoring, how the slightest piece of data can affect the fitting of a cloth made which started my interest in data and how they affect everything, I started self studying.
At this stage all my friends were traveling for post graduate studies but I had not been convinced about what to study, I wanted to make the right choice and didn’t want to make the same mistake of my undergrad by just taking any random course. I came across data science at this time while doing my personal research, I knew this could be the field for me and I just had to fix the little puzzle pieces.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” -Chinese proverb
Today, 5 years later, I’m proficient in a couple of data centric programming languages which I put to use in the corporate world. I started off with using Microsoft Excel and SQL. I went to India to learn Server Administration and I have learned R programming and Python. I have had a couple of jobs and ventures over the years, and with each, the importance of taking data and working on data to improve lives becomes more glaring.
I worked on a project with the Federal Government where I was the deputy lead of a team of 20 installation officers in the North-Central region of the country that installed a Biometric Matching solutions to deal with the country’s banking data woes. That project is lauded one of the biggest intervention in Nigeria’s banking recent history.
I also worked as a service delivery manager for a company, where I contributed to IT Support for software related issues and also managed the database of clients I serviced. During this time, I became a founding member of a nonprofit dedicated to reinventing education for Nigerian kids, my experience with data helped me get assigned to managing the database of students affiliated with the foundation.
I have been seeing the strides data science has taken, I see how there are self driving cars, how drones can sense and avoid obstacles, how adverts on my social media and web pages are based on my interests. I’m fascinated by machine learning and artificial intelligence and I feel blessed to already be in the field.
Based on my research, I have noticed that I’m limited by experience and knowledge of the world and also today’s technology. This is why I have decided to pursue a postgraduate degree in Data Science in a country far from mine. I talked to different people about schools they studied at and a friend of mine said it was like he hit the jackpot by attending Deakin. I liked Deakin after going through the website and watching videos on YouTube because it’s a multicultural school that also ranks favorable in Australia.
I checked for Data Science and I didn’t see it, so I checked out the courses for Msc. Data Analytics and they were what I was looking for. So, I decided to study Data Analytics in your prestigious university. I believe studying in Australia is great for me because it’s human development index is in the world’s top five and Melbourne has a weather condition I believe I can adapt to. I look forward to having my Australian experience in Deakin and I’m also glad to see the course name change from data analytics to data science.
I believe I can finally take control of my destiny and get the required knowledge to not only survive but dominate the data world in the coming years. My country Nigeria, is ripe for data science as Africa is one of the most interesting emerging markets and Nigeria is the most populous nation with the fastest growing cities. I want to get the right knowledge now and I strongly believe I’m coming to the right place.
My experiences make me the right fit for this course because I’ve experienced failure, and survived it, I’ve experienced what passion does and I hope to bring it to the classroom in interaction with your cohorts from other parts of the world, the faculty and the school, I’m excited about the prospect of visiting Australia, I’d love the climate, and different animals I haven’t seen before.
It’s important I keep improving myself by learning. A friend and I recently started an e-commerce business linking fresh farm products to individuals and I know getting knowledge from this course would drive and improve sales. I also intend to build many more apps and spread my influence across education, agriculture and climate change. The data is out there for these fields and I need the knowledge to harness this. It would be a privilege to study Master of Data Science.
I will take the opportunity with both hands, and study and burn midnight candles and get ready for the opportunity ahead of me. At the end of this course, I hope to be innovative in my thinking, make an impact to the society no matter how little, make meaningful and lasting relationships and be great at Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence
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