The Center for Data Science (CDS) has an impressive track record of connecting data science students to jobs with Industry Affiliate Program (IAP) members. Anish Pimpley participated in the CDS Industry Mentorship program, an exclusive benefit for IAP member companies, in 2018, working on a research project with Microsoft.
Anish presented a poster based on his research at the CDS Career Mixer that year. After viewing his poster presentation, Microsoft data scientists invited Anish for an on-site interview at Microsoft’s office in Cambridge. And this past July, he joined the Microsoft AI Development Acceleration Program (MAIDAP). MAIDAP employees work in teams on business problems proposed by Microsoft scientists from across the company, such as improving news recommendations or creating a natural language processing repository.
Anish appreciates the opportunity to use his data science skills on interesting and challenging projects with practical applications. “When I began working on my Master’s degree at UMass, this is what I thought of as the job I would like to have at the end of two years. I was interested in research and working on state of the art projects, but I knew that getting a full-time research job without a PhD at a respected company like Microsoft would be difficult. In this position I get to do research but not on something with a far-off time horizon. These are actual products in the marketplace.”
When asked what advice he has for current Master’s students, he emphasizes the importance of getting work experience through an internship. “There is no better predictor of getting a good job than having an internship on your resume. It helps you to stand out from the pack.”
Anish also has some advice for companies looking to hire data scientists. “I would suggest that they better disambiguate what is meant by data scientist in job postings. Many of my peers have taken ‘data scientist’ positions only to find after a few months that the position is actually a data analyst. Be specific about what a data scientist does at your company.”