Taking Advantage of Metis Career Services During the Bootcamp

Last Updated: March 20, 2020

It’d be easy to assume that a data science bootcamp is solely about data science training. But at Metis, it's about more than that. Our goal is to prepare students for success as data science professionals. Integrated within our 12-week data science curriculum is a careers curriculum focused on resume development, interview preparation, networking, presentation skills, and more. It’s uniquely tailored for the data science industry, so our students are prepared to land that first data science job.

Reflecting on his time at Metis, bootcamp graduate Neal Cheng, now a Data Scientist at Ericsson, said “the career support was wonderful. [They] provided me with career advice that I had not heard elsewhere. It was good hearing how job searching is supposed to be done.”

In order to ensure all our graduates feel as positive about their bootcamp experience as Cheng does, Metis Chicago Career Advisor Ashley Purdy encourages students to think about the bootcamp beyond just the data science work.

“I think of Metis not only as a data science bootcamp, but also as a professional bootcamp,” she said. “The career services team is involved in every aspect of the program from day one as we shape students to become full-fledged data science professionals.”

During the bootcamp, take full advantage of Metis Career Services by giving equal weight to both curriculums simultaneously.

“When students stay on top of the career curriculum as much as they stay on top of the data science curriculum, they are more prepared to hit the ground running when they get active with the job search,” said Purdy.

For bootcamp graduate Chris Gillespie, now a Data Scientist at United Airlines, that insight certainly rings true.

“I think I benefited from not waiting until the bootcamp was in the last week, or over, to really start working on implementing [career services] advice. I started incorporating the advice early on and I think it paid dividends,” he said.

This isn’t always an easy goal to achieve. The data science curriculum is demanding. Students learn many different concepts and skills in a short time period, while building up their project portfolios every week. It’s not a wonder that equally prioritizing things like resume building and salary negotiations might not seem logical. But it’s all part of the larger design of the bootcamp, and Purdy has seen it work time and time again.

“We've had students receive job offers toward the end of a bootcamp, or shortly after graduation, because they stayed engaged with career servicess throughout,” she said. “The more students can invest in career services, the more it will help them lay a foundation that will set them up for success.”

Of course, Purdy and the rest of the team acknowledge that the timeline to employment is different for each student. They’re careful not to push them too hard if they’re showing signs of fatigue with the data science work. But, as part of the job, the career services team is also there to encourage and motivate students to go beyond what they might have initially thought possible.

So how does the team strike that delicate balance between pushing and pulling back? It’s all about individualized communication and openness on the part of the student, said Purdy.

“We have a corny joke that we're like reliable models in that we're only as good as the data you feed us,” she said. “We can only help you and provide you with resources when you are open and honest with us.”

Opportunities for communication between career advisor and student are abundant throughout (and after!) the bootcamp, coming in the form of one-on-one meetings, workshops, mock interviews, and more.

“Your advisor will be available to talk throughout the bootcamp. Take advantage and don't be afraid to ask questions,” said Purdy.

Students are also encouraged to take advantage of networking opportunities with Metis alumni and to build strong relationships with their classmates.

“I chose Metis primarily because of its focus on rapid deliverables and that I would walk away with a portfolio of projects to speak about with employers. But I've been amazed at the strength of the alumni community and don't know how I would begin to manage a job search without it,” said graduate Lauren Oldja, now a Data Scientist at SparkBeyond.

In the end, it can all be boiled down into two words: active participation. Students who are able to focus on career-related work in tandem with their data science work will come out of the bootcamp prepared best for what’s next.

“As career advisors, we are the coaches and students are athletes,” said Purdy. “We can offer advice, tools, and resources, but the students have to be the ones to put in the work and execute.”

Metis, the only accredited Data Science Bootcamp, is proud to announce their highly rated immersive program is now being offered live online! Don’t miss your chance to join the next cohort and learn more about their live online data science bootcamp at thisismetis.com.

This post was sponsored by Metis. To learn more about Metis, visit thisismetis.com or check out their reviews on SwitchUp.

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