student story

Pooja Sureja

Junior Data Scientist @ Toromont CAT
Part-Time Data Science Bootcamp, 2022
Diploma Program

Data Science Bootcamp (Part-Time)

pooja sureja, jr data scientist

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How did you hear about WeCloudData?

I was looking for the best institute for Data Science (DS) during which I came across WeCloudData. There are so many good reviews about the program and mentorship. I contacted some institutes to get more information about their program, however, I found that WeCloudData is the best. Amir, the WeCloudData program advisor, helped me with answering all my questions and doubts about the data science program.  

What made you decide to choose WeCloudData’s Data Science program over other companies? Was there something that stood out to you about our program that solidified your decision?

There were a few things that I like most about WeCloudData.

  1. Real Client Project
  2. Student Success Stories
  3. Placement Ratio

When I decided to switch careers, I took coursera courses for SQL and Udemy for Python. I was interested in getting more hands-on experience. I chose WeCloudData so I could work on some real client projects or capstone projects.

I saw an alumni experience with a similar background to mine. I connected with them through Indeed and reviewed their project; this helped me solidify my decision to choose WeCloudData.

What was your career background before enrolling in our Data Science program?

I was a mechanical engineer. I had 5-6 years of experience in the design and engineering field.

What made you want to pursue a career in Data Science?

I learned some analytical skills while I was working as a mechanical engineer. I got promoted in 6 months to a data analyst position; this increased my curiosity and started learning about data more deeply. My statistics skills boosted my confidence to go into the data science field.

Can you tell us a bit more about yourself and your journey to where you are today?

I started learning programming skills (Python, SQL) in June 2022. I spent almost 3 months learning basics by myself through Udemy and Coursera.

After that, I joined WeCloudData from Oct 2021 to May 2022 for their part-time Data Science program. Then, I took about a week to build my resume, portfolio, GitHub profile, LinkedIn profile, etc. Moreover, I spent about a month preparing for basic interview questions and practiced easy LeetCode exercises. Meanwhile, I was in constant touch with my WeCloud mentors to get through complex exercises and interview preparation.  

I started job applications in April 2022. During this time, I was attending guest lectures and connecting with various people with relevant backgrounds on LinkedIn.

This has helped me to find a good opportunity in the Data Science field and I landed a job in July 2022.

What did you find most enjoyable or interesting about the Data Science program at WeCloudData while being a student? Was there any aspect of our course curriculum or teaching style that stood out to you?

I would say the most important thing for students is the study materials and positive atmosphere. I got all the support and motivation through the bootcamp. All the notes and study materials were very helpful throughout the journey. The lecture notes were easy and well explained. 

The best part of the curriculum is the capstone projects and lecture notes. You will get all the required support needed to complete the portfolio project.

How did the Instructors and Teaching Assistants (TAs) support you during the program? Did you find their knowledge and expertise helpful?

All the TA’s – Shaohua, Adam, Sonia, Jehanzeb, and Tianshu were amazing, patient, and always there to help me. All TA’s are dedicated, they consistently help me work towards the solution of my exercise problems. They helped me in my project a lot too. TA’s support makes WeCloudData different than other program institutes.

Based on your previous education experience, how did online classes compare to learning in-person?

There are pros and cons for both. I was a little scared when I started online classes. I thought that it would be difficult to concentrate. However, later on, I realized that I could listen to the lecture recordings multiple times which helped clear my doubts.

I would like in-person learning because it allows you to interact with other students and instructors in a class. This provides opportunities to learn firsthand through seeing and acting. Face-to-face interaction is essential for greater clarity and understanding than online classes.

Do you have any tips for current students on how to be successful in online classes?

Always use 2 different screens and practice along with your professors/instructors to get the actual idea. After the lecture, do some exercises by following all the steps again to build up confidence before the next lecture.

How do you feel the real client projects helped you when it came time to find a job?

I was a part-time student. I did not join any real-client projects. The capstone project (done in class) helped me a lot to get the job.

How long did it take you to find a job after graduating from WeCloudData?

It took me 2 months to find a job in data science. I applied for approx. 150 jobs and received 3 interviews.

How did your mentor support you during the career mentorship? (e.g., Services provided, advice given)

My Mentor Cheng deserves great thanks. After the program, you need a special person who can guide you to fulfill your goals. We have technical knowledge but as someone fresh out of the program, we want to know what the real world looks like. 

E.g. What types of tasks would be there after getting a job?  How do all the other people in your team work together? My mentor helped a lot in clarifying all my questions.

Cheng helped me with my resume, the interviews, and assignments which boosted my confidence. He helped me in each and every stage of my interview process. WeCloudData and my mentor provided full efforts towards my goal.

Finding a job during the pandemic has been a challenge for most, what aspects of your resume and portfolio do you believe helped you secure a job so quickly?

1st thing I would say is to make a GitHub profile or portfolio on medium and a LinkedIn profile. Mention as many projects as you can (at least 3-4) and create a resume with proper formatting.

The next step is application. So instead of just applying on Indeed and job portals, please try to build some connections as well. Attend guest lectures. Learn about the guest lecturer’s journey. Contact them to share their experience. This will help you to understand how they have achieved success in their position and what efforts you should do. Ask them if they have any junior positions available in the company.

Can you give us some insight into what the Data Science interview process is like?

Based on my experience, the interview process starts with an HR Interview or a Coffee Chat where both parties will have a chance to get to know each other and learn more about the team and company.

The next round starts with a theoretical question round where the manager and team lead/senior data scientist will ask you about data science machine learning models.

After that, you will get an email for a practical/coding interview where you have to show your coding skills in python and SQL within the given time frame in front of a panel.

4th round of the interview stage is a Machine Learning Take-Home Assessment. Within that time frame given, you have to finish the assignment and submit it back to the manager. After a successful assessment, they will ask you to come for a final interview which takes about 1 hour to show your presentation skills. Different panels will join this time and you have to explain your take-home assessment findings in non-technical terms to a non-technical interviewer along with coding and analytical skills to the technical interviewer.

What sort of impact do you feel your Data Science diploma from WeCloudData made on potential employers?

WeCloudData covers all the aspects that are required in the real industry. The number of projects that we do during the study impacts your resume and interviews. Instead of just focusing on only lectures, they also focus on projects. It shows how serious we are about our goals in Data Science. Lecture notes and assignments will help you in your interview.

Do you have any words of advice for current or future students planning on pursuing a career in Data Science? 

My advice is to take some time to understand the field of data science that you want to pursue. Give some time to go through the Udemy or Coursera courses before joining any institute. Once you get comfortable with the basics, you can join the institute.

I know from my experience how overwhelming it can be to go through such an intense course, with part-time study. Give at least 4 hours a day to practice coding or assignments. Be confident and you will succeed.

Few things to make a note of:

  1. Always spend at least 1-hour doing LeetCode exercises
  2. Make your own notes
  3. Clarify questions you have as you go through the lectures
  4. Ask the right questions about the data when you work on the projects. This will improve your analytical and problem-solving skills.

How has your life changed since you graduated from WeCloudData and got a job in the industry?

I really feel that my life is totally changed after this course. I feel more confident than I was before. Financially and professionally, I feel more relaxed and comfortable.

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