My next blog will be dedicated to reflecting on the past two weeks at The Data School. I am writing this blog on the Monday morning of week three as I was too exhausted last Friday to write this. It was a massive two weeks. First I will first give a little bit of background.

Introduction into myself and how I got here
Hi, my name is Mitchell Bliesner, I am 22 years old and graduated last year with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Astronomical and Space Sciences. I had a complete panic after I graduated because I did not know what I wanted to do. To solve this problem, I thought about what I enjoyed most about the math and physics subjects I studied in the past, and it was the data side of things. I loved getting the data and creating graphs to tell a story. I went online and searched for ‘Data jobs’ and found the career of data analytics. This interested me so in my spare time I watched many YouTube videos on how to become a data analyst. I then looked on job searching sites looking for a data analyst job, many of them were asking for a degree plus 5 years’ experience in many different applications and coding languages. After scrolling through many sites, I stumbled upon an ad for The Data School Down Under and that they are enrolling the first cohort in Brisbane. I saw the ad in December and had until the end of February to submit the application. I will go through the application process in another blog. Let’s just say it was very extensive, but the school gave me plenty of help along the way. I did not think I would get in, but I did and am very grateful for that.

Week 1 – Data 101 and Tableau 101
Mon: Public Holiday
Tues: No learning new things happened on Tuesday. It was the introduction day. We met the head coach for the country, David, and then a lead coach for Brisbane, Shane. We had a tour of the office, received our laptops and had a few introductory presentations by Shane and David. We all got up and gave a presentation about someone else in the group that we only got to know for a few minutes.
Wed and Thurs: Chantel taught us for two days about Tableau 101. She covered information about data, visualization best practices and as well as how to make many, many different charts.
Friday: Friday is presentation day. You will receive a challenge at 9am and will all get up and present at 3pm. This is the part that scared me as I hate public speaking, but it isn’t as scary and what you think it will be. Everyone is very supportive, and Shane gave really good feedback about the stuff he liked and the things he didn’t like. The coaches say it in a very supportive way, so it is very helpful. I managed to get through the presentation and was told that I made a lot of improvements and my dashboard worked better. However, I was happy when it was over.

Week 2 – Alteryx 101
Mon: Shane was teaching us Alteryx all this week. He started by showing us around the application and went through all the basic tools and how to use them. We went through a few challenges to test what we learnt.
Tues, Wed, Thurs: These days was spent learning a few new tools and then we would complete an Alteryx challenge. When we were done, we sent our answer to Shane and then he sent us another challenge. This was a great way to learn the tools. On Thursday after lunch, all eight data schoolers sat the Alteryx core exam to achieve our certification and we all passed. I believe we are the first cohort globally to achieve the certification in only one week on Alteryx training.
Friday: Again, it is presentation day, we were set a task to present an Alteryx workflow to the group. Shane gave us the option of two Alteryx challenges, one easier and the other much more difficult. I chose the easier one. Shane told us to present as if we are presenting the workflow to people with one day training in Alteryx. We had to use documentation to ensure that the workflow was easy to understand. It is also important that the solution is the most efficient. There are many ways to solve a problem and we were encouraged to find a solution with minimal steps so that the workflow is clean.

That is two weeks done at The Data School. The next two weeks are going to be Tableau Advanced and Alteryx Advanced. I am very nervous about it. I feel like I’m not picking everything up, but I will keep practicing so that I learn these two products better.

Thank you for reading my blog.