How long have you been at RaiseMe? 2+ years!
What team are you on? Engineering
What brought you to RaiseMe? The mission to help low-income, first-generation students get into college resonated with me because that is me.
What would your Twitter bio say about you? Former astronomer, current Data Scientist. I play basketball and drink IPAs- usually not at the same time. Met my amazing wife in Santa Cruz and we both dream of moving back.
What’s your favorite thing about working at RaiseMe? Working with and learning from my colleagues.
What sort of interesting challenges have you faced at RaiseMe? Coming straight out of a postdoc in Astronomy, I had to figure out how to be the only Data Scientist at RaiseMe. This required me to learn the tools used by typical Data Scientists (Python, SQL, machine learning, etc.), and skills used by typical Data Engineers (ETL pipelines!) and Software Engineers (web development!). I’ve had to learn a lot, and I’m still learning, but it has been very fun and I look forward to coming into the office everyday.
What’s on your reading list? I like reading classics because they already come highly regarded, whereas reading contemporary books involves me having to sift through the masses to find the good stuff, which is too hard. I’m currently reading Les Miserables and I’m 60% through. It’s….very long. Looking forward to watching the play and the movie when I’m finally done, though!
What’s one college course that you loved? I was in the engineering school at Columbia University, so I didn’t really have to take many non-STEM courses. However, we were required to take a few, and I remember taking Art Humanities, or as we lovingly called it—Art Hum. I’ve never taken an art class, and so didn’t know what to expect, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a better city to take this class— the Met was right down the street! This course taught me to think critically about art and helped me understand its significance. Art hum has instilled a permanent appreciation of art and I wish I had the opportunity to take these types of courses in high school.
At what point in your schooling/life/career would you say you “found your path?” This is a hard question, and I’m not sure I can even say that I have indeed found my path. There are certainly important junctures that got me on my current path. The biggest was my decision to pursue a PhD in Astronomy, because it led me to Santa Cruz. The second most important decision was deciding to pursue a career as a Data Scientist. Hopefully, I’m on a good path, but I guess we’ll see!
Want to learn more about working at RaiseMe? Check out our jobs page.