How did I end up working in the world of data analytics?
I will start my narrative on my journey with Istanbul University where I was studying mathematics. Becoming a high school math teacher was the most common option back then for the students in that department which I really did not care much about. Following that program I decided to move into business or economics area and came to US as a student and landed in Wichita, Kansas.
For the sake of conciseness and relevance I skip my attempts in between such as sales job in a small family owned chemical company, opening a gym and spending serious time and effort in fitness field etc. I got admitted to the WSU (Wichita State University) in Kansas and graduated with a bachelors degree in business admnistration with a focus in international finance.
I continued to puruse master's degree in economics at the same university immediately after the graduation where I completed my graduate degree program. During the grad school curriculum I was exposed to statistical methodologies in marketing research, economics and finance areas where I realized that I would be building a career at thus this was when I started to cozy up to the idea of working with data.
Upon obtaining my grad degree from WSU I got married in Topeka, Kansas with Lisa Medlin who is a Kansas native. I met Lisa at the college where she completed her master's degree in clinical nurse specialist area couple years prior to my graduation and got a job in Hutchinson, KS where she worked as director of social services as she also had a master's degree in social work from KU. We moved to Twin Cities, Minnesota short after our wedding and decided to settle down here where we still are living with our daughter Seren who is currently undergrad student at the University of Minnesota.
After changing couple jobs I made an executive decision on pursuing a full blown career in the IT field with focus on data analytics. Following some extensive research for training options I decided to sign up for a certification program offered by the U of M and completed two certificate programs there, first in Client and Server and later on in Oracle applications development tracks.
Following those programs I started taking some non-degree bound night courses at St. Paul Technical College in various related topics, while working alsoin the field, I was trying to educate myself through various online training options back then. I was becoming more and more convinced that my affinity was in the world of databases, spreadsheets, reporting in general data analytics field where I should be building a career at.
Each job that I was lucky to have in this area forced me to delve more into the world of data and exposed me to different aspects of this discipline. About half of my career I had contract opportunities where I was able to work with various different tools, people and technologies at various different companies and industries which contributed to my professional growth significantly.
If someone asks me what would be the most satisfying professional experience for me, I'd say building a tool that would show the "driver" everyhting that needs to be known during his or her trip to a particular distance. Like a pilot who needs to have all the flight data and status on his dashboard and decide on what actions to take to steer the aircraft into the right direction safely going thru strong headwinds and turbulance with a high degree of confidence.
If that proverbal flight dashboard analogy carries my signature somehwere on it and is trusted by those proverbial pilots then I'd consider myself professionally achieved person.