I first learned about the Data School at a Jobs Fair on June 28th, 2022. At that time, I just learned about machine learning with Python and R. My next natural step was to start using Tableau for data visualization.

During that career expo, I talked with one of their staff, who explained how to apply to the school by exploring a dataset and creating a Tableau dashboard.

After I went home, I looked at some successful dashboards created by previous cohorts on the data school website, which inspired me to teach myself Tableau. The nearest application deadline was September 25th, so I made a schedule to learn Tableau and aimed to upload my dashboard by September 16th to ensure I didn’t miss the chance to apply.

Preparing for Success:

To prepare for my application, I studied the successful dashboards from previous cohorts and analysed the data storytelling technique used in their dashboards. I focused on how to tell a story with data and tried to discover the “why” behind their analyses, not just the “what.” I also wrote a presentation script for my dashboard, rehearsing it almost 30 times. I knew that storytelling would be the most critical element of my application, and I wanted to make sure I got it right.

Submitting my Dashboard:

I submitted my dashboard on Thursday, and the following day, AlexTJ replied with suggestions on how I could improve my dashboard. I appreciated his promptness and feedback, which helped me make adjustments before the final submission. I was quite nervous about the first interview, but I did my best to present and tell the story of my dashboard. They informed me that I would receive the results of my application by mid-October. I spent the next few weeks waiting anxiously, but fortunately, I was able to distract myself by watching the Women’s Basketball World Cup live in Sydney Olympic Park.

The Final Interview:

On October 16th, I received an email for the final interview. They provided a large dataset of Australian charity companies for me to create a dashboard within two weeks. I worked hard to create a logical and visually appealing dashboard, ensuring that my storytelling was compelling and engaging. The day I received the offer was one of the most exciting moments of my life, and I will never forget the effort and dedication it took to get there.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, the journey to applying to the Data School was an exciting and challenging process. Throughout my experience, I learned that storytelling is a crucial part of data analysis, and I worked hard to master this skill. The Data School provided an opportunity to refine my skills, and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to pursue a career in data. By studying successful dashboards and focusing on data storytelling, I was able to create a compelling dashboard and successfully pass the final interview. I will never forget the moments leading up to my acceptance into the Data School, and I am excited to see where this path takes me in my data career.

Chuck Wang
Author: Chuck Wang