My Expectations from Data School

by Natasha Kurakina

Long prologue

When I was applying for data school I really didn’t know much about it except what was available on the website. The fact that I couldn’t make it to the first meet and greet event didn’t help in shaping my expectations either.

Therefore, before joining DS I had some pretty generic expectations: learn Tableau and Alteryx during the first few months in training, and then get practical experience during the next three placements.

Now, after a few weeks in DS, I have a much clearer perspective.

Firstly, there is no such a thing as going to ‘learn’ Tableau and Alteryx. There is never an end point in learning, even when we talk about learning how to use a specific tool. Both Tableau and Alteryx offer a lot of opportunities to constantly improve your knowledge and skills, through a rich set of tools and a growing set of features.

Secondly, DS has shown me the benefits of being part of the community, and in this case a very friendly and supportive community. This has been a completely new experience for me, as coming from a finance background and working mainly in Excel, I didn’t have a lot of opportunities to showcase a new exciting spreadsheet or report that I developed. Now that I’ve started to engage in the Tableau and Alteryx communities I feel that I am part of something bigger, and I can always share my work, ask for feedback and learn from it, as well as get inspired by others’ work.

These first few weeks in DS helped me to refine my expectations from both DS and myself, which I’ve listed here in a straight to the point bullet-points.

I expect to:

  • Develop excellent Tableau and Alteryx skills
  • Learn and apply best data visualisation practices
  • Extend my business analysis skills
  • Become a more effective team member and team leader
  • Be able to deliver a client project
  • Receive support and feedback from my colleagues
  • Build a network and personal profile
  • Get used to being constantly challenged
  • Step out of my comfort zone more often
  • Become a more productive and organised person
  • Continuously improve my skills by participating in various community projects
  • Draw inspiration from my peers and share my work to inspire others


PS. Don’t miss the next meet and greet session at Data School to help build your expectations.

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