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The Journey to Data Analytics: Discover José’s Story

Meet José, a determined professional from Puerto Rico who embarked on a journey to Brussels and found himself diving into the world of Data Analytics at Le Wagon Belgium. In this blog post, José shares his experiences, from making the move to Brussels to enrolling in the Data Analytics Bootcamp. Discover how hands-on projects, a supportive community, and networking opportunities helped him transform his career.

1) Can you please introduce yourself and give an insight into your background?

My name is José. I’m 34 years old and I’m originally from Puerto Rico. I moved from Madrid to Brussels back in the summer of 2018, when I came to work at one of the European institutions. I thought I was going to stay for a year, but, as it often happens, I stayed longer than expected! Soon after my contract ended, I found interesting opportunities in Brussels’ EU Bubble, where I had the chance to learn from people from all over Europe and grow professionally. Along the way, I also made great friends, all of whom made life in Brussels a more welcoming place.

2) What made you decide to attend a Le Wagon Data Analytics bootcamp?

Before attending the Data Analytics Bootcamp at Le Wagon, I had been considering doing coding courses on my own. While working in trade associations, I was tasked with collecting data from different markets and writing reports. This gave me a detailed understanding of market developments and trends and allowed me to further hone my skills. However, looking ahead at the next steps of my career, I noticed that I had to develop a set of competencies, particularly in programming, to pursue opportunities that I was interested in. I heard about Le Wagon from a previous student and, after doing a bit of research of own, I soon realized its Data Analytics program was an excellent starting point to learn the basics of coding and it seemed to have a practical focus, which is what I was looking for.

3)Can you tell us about your experiences at Le Wagon? Were there any specific aspects of the program that stood out to you?

I had a very positive experience at Le Wagon. The Data Analytics program is certainly intensive, but every day, after going through the daily lectures and challenges, I felt that there were small improvements, which made me feel more confident about coding. There were, of course, moments in which I did not immediately grasp something during the classes or needed more time to progress on one topic, but this is also part of the learning process. I also liked the fact that you were able to work with another student each day and consider different solutions. In terms of specific content, the program is well-balanced. I think it was very useful to dedicate several days to SQL and Python, as these are key languages for anyone interested in a career in Data Analytics or Business Intelligence. I also found the structure of the days quite helpful, focusing on the practical side of lessons. All in all, it was an interesting and worthwhile experience.

4) How did the hands-on projects contribute to your learning experience?

The final project is where everything comes together after weeks of learning. It required students to work in teams, choose the right tools and indicators, and deliver a consistent solution to a business-related problem. Despite being quite intense, it served as great training. We learned to combine many of the new tools we had seen over the previous weeks and had to decide at what stage of the project to use them. In many ways, it resembled a real project undertaken by companies, so it was certainly practical and it made us push ourselves further.

5) Did you find the Le Wagon community and networking opportunities valuable?

I did, yes. Le Wagon’s community is quite broad, spanning different countries, and you have access to help from teachers and alumni, as well a range of useful resources. I particularly like the fact that people in this community are quite accessible and they are happy to give advice or lend a hand with technical questions. I also liked the fact that, during the bootcamp, you could meet alumni who were already working and were willing to share their insights and experiences. Le Wagon also organized a Career Week at the end of the bootcamp which was also a great networking opportunity, particularly to meet recruiters and understand what companies are looking for.

6) What advice would you give to someone considering enrolling in the Le Wagon Data Analytics bootcamp?

Enrolling in a bootcamp is always a matter of opportunity and motivation. If someone has the chance to do it, whether full-time or part-time, and is ready and eager to put in the effort to upskill or switch careers, then this bootcamp is a sensible option with a lot of potential. I would simply say that the DA bootcamp provides a solid bedrock, but this is only the starting point. It is important to continue practicing and reading, as this is the way to ultimately master programming languages and IT programs.

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