So it begins - DS20

by Luke Donovan

It feels like a lifetime ago when I got the call from Andy explaining that I had been accepted into the twentieth cohort of the data school. I remember being so excited yet nervous, feelings all too similar the evening of May 31st. *Blink* it’s suddenly June 1st, the first official day of the data school! It’s been great to finally get our teeth into it and get started, it all felt that little more real when we got our care packages containing our laptops and other goodies.

My view for the next four months (please excuse the mess of the storage room/make shift office)

Day 1

After a day of conversations and introductions, the clock struck 3:30 and it was makeover Monday time, the first piece of work I would create as an official cohortian (yes, it is now a word). I was petrified to say the least, all my previous knowledge had seemed to jump ship and leave me on my lonesome. What had seemed to only be 5 minutes of data digestion turned out to be 20, and I only had 40 minutes to create something, and here is the end result …

Makeover Monday – Week 22

This is by no means my best work, am I proud of it though? Absolutely. If you had told me that on my first day I would produce a somewhat coherent dashboard in under an hour, I would’ve either laughed in your face or crumbled under the mere thought. I’ll probably look back at this in 4 months time and throw up, but it’s a start and I aim to keep on getting better.

Day 2

After surviving the first day (that makes it seem bad, it wasn’t I swear), it was time for some more learning, Alteryx entered stage left. Carl gave us an intro into data prepping, the ins and outs. We got a quick demo on a sample finance spreadsheet and were asked to recreate the workflow in pairs, which we completed with no complications. My first workflow, another milestone.

First ever Alteryx workflow

The task that proceeded however … not so straightforward. We were tasked with cleaning a data set from Carl’s ‘preppin data’ weekly challenge, again in pairs. We ran into some difficulties along the way, which was to be expected, but Jana and I gave it our best go and we were pleased with what we had produced. That’s all part of the process, giving it a go and learning from the things you did right and wrong, and I’m looking forward to more challenges ahead.

The first couple of days have been great so far, and I’m excited for what’s to come. I am also lucky to be in a cohort with such talented people and can’t wait to get to know them more. If the past 2 days are anything to go by, this will be one hell of a journey.

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