Data Girl Ash
And - Data Professional + Speaker
Educate yourself inside and outside the classroom.
WHAT DO YOU DO?
By day, I am a Medical Education Data Analyst at a medical school in New York City. By night, I am a Woman in Data Science Ambassador who is passionate about empowering unrepresented data enthusiasts, to pursue in-demand careers in the data, technology, and business sector. I combined my love of data education and fashion by creating Data Girl Ash. A woman-operated online business that offers data-inspired apparel and career coaching services to support educational resources.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THIS FIELD?
As I further developed my skillset in public health, I decided that I wanted to complement my expertise by learning business management. This led me to pursue a Master in Business Administration. I couldn't have been happier because this opened the door to my data exploration period, where I worked on consulting projects such as designing a graduate-level concentration and creating an American Medical Tourism facility with government officials in Tanzania, East Africa. With this, I was motivated to pursue a career in multiple areas of STEM because it allowed me to be in a growing industry!
HOW DO/DID YOU TACKLE OBSTACLES?
One of the roadblocks I faced was not having a technical background before pursuing a data career. I was able to seek out resources from my local library, graduate program, and mentors to equip me with the skills and guidance I needed to advance in my career.
WHAT DO YOU LOOK AT & THINK, "I WISH YOUNGER ME WOULD HAVE KNOWN THIS WAS POSSIBLE?"
I wish younger me would have known the power of networking. When I started to make more professional and meaningful connections, I enhanced my communication skills, stayed on top of trending topics in my industry, and met prospective mentors and colleagues. I firmly believe this helped me find my tribe of supporters and allowed me to mentor others along the way.
WHY DO YOU LOVE WORKING IN STEM?
I love working in the STEM field because I can contribute to a collective group of game-changers committed to finding ways to make the world we live in more innovative. Despite increasing opportunities in this domain, there are significant disparities in data science for historically marginalized groups. I am proud that I can represent to people, especially aspiring #DataGirls, that it is possible to be a part of this community and succeed.
BEST ADVICE FOR NEXT GENERATION?
Educate yourself inside and outside the classroom. There are numerous opportunities to receive a high-quality education that doesn’t have to break the bank and programs that allow you to learn on your terms. Trust that you are more than your GPA and can hone your unique skills by doing something you love.
Someone is out there doing the thing you love; why can't that be you?