It’s the last week of training for us in DSAU4 and its amazing how fast the last 16 weeks have flown by. Its been a fun but challenging experience. It was daunting at first to start in a completely new field after being an engineer for several years. But the Data School has been such a great program for speedily training us to become great data analytics consultants. After 16 weeks I feel better equipped to deal with any challenges thrown my way! Since we’ve come to the end of initial training I thought I’d reflect on the last 4 months.


The Technical Training

We have gained so much knowledge and technical skills thanks to the support of head coach Craig Dewar and all the other great consultants at MIP. When starting out this journey I only had beginner Tableau knowledge and I had never used Alteryx before. Now I am happy to have achieved my Advanced Alteryx Certification and Tableau Desktop Qualified Associate Certification.

One of my favourite parts of the training was discovering and learning Alteryx. Going from not knowing anything to be able to use complicated macros to solve problems quickly by the end was really satisfying. Getting the advanced certification after Week 3 of training was a real highlight for me!

It was also amazing to see how much I’ve improved in my use of Tableau. Looking at my Tableau Public Profile I’ve felt my Vizzes have improved so much since starting to use the software back in June.



Soft Skills

The focus on soft skills to become a better consultant have been great too. Presentations were never my favourite activity and I often still get nervous. I think that the Data School has helped significantly with that. My presentation skills have improved dramatically from having to get up and present in front of clients or colleagues every week.

I also really enjoyed training week, where we had to teach a topic we learnt back to our fellow cohort. I didn’t really understand why it was important at the time, but now realise how necessary it is to be able to teach or explain your work at client placements.


Client Project Weeks

During our time at the Data School we had 7 client project weeks. Real clients would share with us their data and some of the challenges they were facing on Monday with us presenting analysis and dashboards on the Friday. The client project weeks have been an invaluable experience. The chance to work on real world data with real world problems was really challenging but rewarding. I think there is no better way to learn and grow than to be thrown in the deep end. It was also great to have exposure to different industries with different data needs. The first couple of projects were overwhelming but I think we all got better working together and it pushed us to become better analysts


The Next Steps

One of the best parts of the data school has been going through this whole experience with the other members of DSAU4. We each had such different backgrounds and strengths, it has been a great laughing and learning from each other and becoming close.

Although I’ve really enjoyed our training days at the Data School, I’m looking forward to heading out on my first placement and applying all the skills I’ve learnt. For anyone thinking to apply to the Data School I recommend it. It is a great environment to work with other people who are passionate about data and eager to learn.

Feel free to reach out on LinkedIn or Twitter or check out my vizzes on Tableau Public.


Chantel Brooke
Author: Chantel Brooke