From Hair Salon Receptionist to Data Scientist & Mentor: Springboard Alum Mikiko Bazeley


Here at Springboard, not solely can we delight ourselves on our college students’ successes, however we genuinely consider that their goals are what make up the muse of our mission. Our alumni dream massive – and so they make massive strikes in stride. So, in our sequence of Student Spotlights, we’re shining a light-weight onto a few of our favourite alumni tales: their journeys inform tales of accomplishment, grit, and willpower towards every kind of odds. 

In this publish, we introduce Mikiko Bazeley: hair salon receptionist turned Springboard Data Science Career Track alum turned Data Analytics Career Track mentor. Read all about her journey beneath. 

Just a little bit about Mikiko…

Mikiko graduated from UC San Diego in 2013 with a B.A. in Economics & Anthropology. She joined the Springboard Data Science Career Track in October of 2018.  After 6 months, she accomplished the curriculum and commenced the job search part of the course. Four months later, she landed a job as a Data Scientist at Livongo, one of many main digital well being firms empowering individuals with persistent situations to dwell their greatest lives. 

What initially you in data science?  

When I graduated from UC San Diego in 2013 with a B.A. in Economics/Anthropology, I struggled for a couple of years making an attempt to discover my dream profession. My first job post-graduation (and the one one I may get on the time) was working because the entrance desk woman at a hair salon. 

I had a robust need to go into the tech business and work for a startup –like a lot of our purchasers had been doing. After spending some time what felt like watching from the sidelines, I give up the salon and landed my first position as a progress hacker for an early stage recruitment tech startup. At that time, the motivation was in realizing that I needed to go extra into information and the willpower to be taught extra in regards to the business and the totally different sorts of roles it supplied.

I’d spend my days working and my nights and weekends taking on-line lessons in programming, math, and database improvement. Iteratively studying extra about this rising self-discipline known as “data science” and understanding that I wanted some structured foundations, I utilized to – and acquired! – a hybrid information analyst/data scientist position at Autodesk. I used to be thrilled! 

But then, I promptly started to run into challenges because the very junior “data scientist on an island”, a few of which included accessing, processing and visualizing big data for machine learning. I spotted I didn’t have the instruments, particular skillset, or sources to be taught and turn into the type of data scientist I needed to be. 

Eventually, I had the possibility to interview for an inside data scientist position on a unique group – and fully bombed the interview. During the post-interview debrief I requested the senior data scientist what I may have performed higher: she inspired me to strive to discover a place the place I may work on data science initiatives to get extra hands-on expertise.

What was your Springboard expertise like? 

When I selected Springboard I used to be centered on discovering a program that had a couple of key elements: 

(1) Cost 

(2) Ability to proceed working full-time 

(3) Program flexibility

(4) Mentorship 

(5) Project portfolio constructing

From there, I discovered my Springboard expertise to go above and past these {qualifications}: this system was extremely useful and impactful in my job seek for a data scientist position. The curriculum is incredible, the mentorship superb, and the construction allowed me to proceed working and keep my monetary liquidity.

As a part of my capstones, I centered primarily on utilizing the instruments and expertise I realized within the curriculum to provoke and execute data science initiatives at my present firm to get  the real-time, hands-on, apprenticeship-like expertise.

What was your relationship along with your mentor like?

My mentor would give precious suggestions not simply on my capstone initiatives, but additionally on how to interface with key stakeholders, how to use mannequin interpretability instruments like SHAP and LIME. At instances, they even served as that constructive counterbalance to my fixed emotions of impostor syndrome. 

I’m so grateful to have had the chance to be taught from such an skilled data scientist and am grateful to depend him as a part of my skilled community.

What was your capstone challenge? 

Predicting Outcomes of Demo Calls for a SaaS Sales Oriented Company 

For this capstone, I carried out the primary predictive mannequin for my gross sales group, using XGBoost to classify qualification of gross sales demo calls so as to enhance pipeline forecasting efforts. 

The capstone is an illustration of the worth that seemingly low-hanging fruit data science initiatives can have on enterprise organizations like income operations and the type of collaboration that may occur between data scientists and enterprise companions.

What was essentially the most precious a part of your Springboard expertise? 

Hands down, essentially the most precious a part of the Springboard expertise was the mentorship and portfolio initiatives. I realized a lot about data science and I felt supported every time I bumped into technical questions or elements of the initiatives that my group at work couldn’t assist me on.

As a Springboard Mentor, what recommendation do you’ve for these contemplating on-line studying?

Commit. Sometimes I really feel that my college students don’t take on-line studying significantly as a result of there isn’t a prestigious diploma or certificates connected. The actuality is that on-line studying is in regards to the expertise and experiences you personally develop and the way you later use them to resolve issues. It’s essential to perceive how the talents and the flexibility to be taught are crucial instruments in your skilled profession.

Courageously say “YES!” to YOU. By not giving ourselves permission to pursue happiness and real success, we’re losing a useful resource that so many want they may have. YOU have each proper to be completely happy, to expertise a satisfying profession, to make a worldwide influence. You simply have to say “Yes”.

Ready to begin or develop your data science profession? Check out our Data Science Career Track —you’ll be taught the talents and get the customized steerage you want to land the job you need.


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