Through postgraduate study, Jessica Parker is shifting the focus of her career to accommodate her interest in statistical analysis and data.
Master of Applied Science (Statistics and Operations Research)
The Minor Thesis subject has been a brilliant opportunity to research a specialised analysis type and apply it to real data.
I’ve always been fascinated by numbers and wanted to increase my skills in statistical analysis for my career development.
A lot of people hate statistics or are terrified of it, which means it’s a great field to get into if you enjoy it! Analytics is also a very hot field right now with more people collecting more and more data and not having the tools or expertise to analyse it.
RMIT is accommodating of students who work and study. Class times are generally scheduled at the end of the work day, so I can attend classes without having to take leave.
The Minor Thesis subject has been a brilliant opportunity to research a specialised analysis type and apply it to real data. The Industrial Research Project was also a great opportunity to interact with clients and see if, where and how you can improve business processes using statistical analysis.
Studying this course has significantly improved my understanding of a range of statistical concepts. I’ve gained proficiency with several statistical software packages including SAS, R and Arena and I also now have a much greater ability to communicate complex statistical concepts and analysis findings to clients and lay-people.
For anyone interested in this program, I would say go for it! But take it at a pace that suits your work and lifestyle – you don’t have to study full-time.
I wasn’t working in a field directly relevant to my program at the start of my course, but studying has enabled me to shift the focus of my career towards what I want to be doing, and I am now the ‘data person’ in my work group.
My greatest achievement to date has been winning the Best Paper award at the SimTect 2014 conference and presenting the same paper in Orlando, Florida at I/ITSEC 2014 as part of the prize.
I intend to continue working and studying to complete my degree. I also want to travel to South America and learn Spanish. Ideally, I would love to work in high frequency real-time data analysis and visualisation.
I love what I do because it’s challenging and the insights you gain are often surprising. You have to be thorough, methodical, and at times, a little bit creative!