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A data-driven gap year in Amsterdam

Get ready to meet Alma, an enthusiastic student at Le Wagon, who is making the most of her gap year by diving into data analytics in Amsterdam. Among her exciting plans is the mission to create data-driven solutions for climate issues.
Meet Alma: Data Analytics student at Le Wagon Amsterdam, Netherlands

Hi Alma, can you please introduce yourself?

My name is Alma, I’m 23 years old, and I’m originally from France. I’m doing the Data Analytics Bootcamp at Le Wagon in Amsterdam, which started in April. It marks the beginning of my gap year, a year-long break between my two master’s degree years. Over the past few years, I have successfully balanced my studies with my passion for sports and involvement in various association projects. Since the age of six, I have been practicing fencing as a high-level sportswoman, and this makes me who I am.

What were you doing before joining Le Wagon?

I had a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Informatics. I had just finished my first year of a master’s degree in Innovation Management at the University Paris Dauphine PSL and Mines Paris PSL. We primarily focused on learning how to work on projects with unknown parameters. This led me to ponder a significant question: why innovate? In order to answer this question, I chose a thesis that resonated with me: innovating to combat global warming issues and address the damage that has already been caused. I firmly believe that data is the most powerful tool for achieving this. I am thrilled to have had the opportunity to enhance my skills in this field.

What made you decide to do the bootcamp in the Netherlands?

For my gap year, I wanted to have an experience in a foreign country. I had already visited Amsterdam a few times on weekends with friends and family, and I fell in love with the city’s spirit. The bootcamp in the Netherlands aligns perfectly with what I was looking for: computer science courses, an international environment, and the opportunity to explore a new city.

What do you like the most about Amsterdam?

I am very curious, and it has been amazing to explore the various aspects of Amsterdam: riding bikes, barbecuing in the parks, cruising on boats, visiting museums, and all of this under the sun. It’s a wonderful way to start the summer.

What made you decide to do the Data Analytics bootcamp?

Firstly, I wanted to gain a global business perspective and understand all the processes related to data within companies. Data is everywhere, and I’m interested in analyzing data to uncover insights about human behavior. It is crucial for companies to be data-driven, and it is the role of a data analyst to identify valuable information and make informed business decisions based on it.

What motivated you to upskill? What are your expected outcomes?

I have had some experience in data management, and while I was able to handle it myself, I have a strong desire to learn the best practices and techniques for proper data management. Three years ago, as a board member of Dauphine Junior Consulting, the student consulting company at my university, I was responsible for creating data reports on the company’s activities. However, it was quite challenging and time-consuming to find the right data sources and process the data to extract relevant information. I aspire to be well-equipped to tackle diverse data-related challenges, become proficient in utilizing a wide range of data tools and contribute effectively to data-driven projects.

How is your experience in the bootcamp so far?

The bootcamp is a truly enriching human experience. There are more than seven nationalities represented. I love challenging myself in a supportive environment. Le Wagon offers a great and energetic atmosphere, with activities like yoga, tech talks, and after-work events. Overall, I believe the best is yet to come. During the last two weeks of the bootcamp, we’ll work on concrete projects in teams for which we are starting to explore topics related to climate issues.

What are your plans post-bootcamp?

In the short term, my plans are already set. I will be starting a 6-month internship as a social innovation consultant in August in Paris. I am eager to utilize data to provide advice to NGOs, governments, and companies. Additionally, I am highly interested in working within the startup ecosystem. I would like to begin as a freelance consultant, assisting early-stage startups in managing their data and gaining a better understanding of their business. In the long term, I aspire to combine data and innovation to discover new key performance indicators (KPIs) that drive business success. Alternatively, I may consider joining a climate tech startup.

Do you have any advice for those who want to take the leap into tech?

My advice is to jump into it! Le Wagon is a fantastic way to dive into tech subjects.

Thank you, Alma!

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