Data Science Programs in DC
With nearly 10 different data science programs, there are a number of options with the District of Columbia for you to study data science and analytics.
The Masters in Data Science is a popular program in the DC metro area, with multiple options in the city, online, and in nearby states.
Online Data Science Programs in Washington DC
American University MS in Analytics
For those looking for an online degree in this field, the only option in Washington DC is obtaining a Master of Science in Analytics through the Kogod School of Business. It is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). This is a different path than their Master of Science in Data Science, which is only available on campus. An MSAn degree focuses on using data and predictive methods to improve various aspects of the business while an MSDS degree prepares students with engineering and programming to create those systems and their alogrithms.
The MSAn requires 33 total credit hours to complete, separated into six core courses, four electives, and two in-person practicums that are completed in Washington, DC. Those physical meetings will be real-world situations that need to be solved and the school has partnered with companies like Capital One. Tools that are used in the courses include SQL, Tableau, Hadoop, and customized versions of Microsoft Excel. Areas of focus students can select are Business Foundations, Cybersecurity, Financial Analytics, and Consulting. There are four start dates for maximum flexibility when going into the program.
An alternative program is the MSDS, which requires 30 credit hours to complete and must be completed on campus. 15 credit hours are spread out in core classes, 3 credits are for either Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Political Science or Statistical Methods, 9 credits are for the various tracks that students can select such as Business Analytics and Investigative Journalism, and a capstone project at the end. This program is open to those with a Bachelor's degree with at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
George Washington University MS in Data Science
The Columbian College of Arts and Sciences has both a Master of Science in Data Science and a Graduate Certificate in Data Science, both only offered at the campus. For certification, 12 credits must be earned, which includes two of the required courses -- Introduction to Data Science, Introduction to Data Mining, and Data Warehousing -- and two electives.
These courses can be combined with the full MSDS, which offers broader look at data analysis, software tools, and improves communication skills which are imperative for a successful career in the field. 30 credits are needed to complete the Master's degree.
Scholarship Opportunities within Washington DC
George Washington University offers various scholarships and fellowships for graduate-level full-time students with awards that vary, including 18 credit hours taken off tuition, salaries, stipends, and more. This is also the case in the School of Business for those completing a Master of Science in Business Analytics.
For women that are members of the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Women in Engineering for at least a year, they are eligible for a scholarship from the organization if they are enrolled in the MSAn program at American. The award is up to $7,500 toward tuition. Members of the United Methodist Church for over two years can apply for the American University graduate scholarship. This is specifically for full-time graduate students that are in an online program.
Georgetown University, who offers an on-campus Master of Science in Analytics, can apply for university scholarships based on merit and teaching assistantships. This is for both incoming and current students when available.
Data Science Events, Meetups, and Conferences in Washington DC
A multiple-day event that features talks from professionals in a variety of departments, which includes data science, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. This is one of the biggest conferences that features Apache Solr and Lucidworks Fusion, and the event centers around how to apply search and AI methods into the organization. The first two days holds training courses and the later days featuring presentations and speaker keynotes.
Typical occupations that are seen at this event include developers, data engineers, data scientists, IT managers, and chief technology and information officers. Companies that have participated in the conference keynotes include Target, StubHub, Getty Images, Salesforce, and Amazon Web Services.
A unique government-focused event that helps professionals in this sector improve their workplace by increasing efficiency, policy-making, and mission outcomes. The one-day event has over 40 speakers that will be presenting ideas on how to make data analytics better adopted along government agencies, how these can be used to complete goals, how to build high-functioning analytic teams, and what the newest technologies are.
This is open to all levels of the government — federal, state, and local. Along with keynote speakers, there will be specialized breakout groups that will tackle specific issues related to the track selected. There are multiple workshops, such as fraud analytics and a deeper dive into data science for management, that take place on days around the event.
Data Science DC
One of the biggest meetup groups in Washington DC is Data Science DC with over 12,000 members. With meetings typically once in the middle of each month, this offers a tremendous opportunities for workers, students, and those with an interest in the field to get together and discuss various topics. This includes machine learning, AI, predictive analytics, and data visualization.
Routinely, the group will hold “Lightning Talks,” which has quick talks from various professionals that present their work and/or innovations they have experienced. Other classes in the past have dealt with employment help, preparing for data science conventions, and deep discussions on the future of the tech industry.
Data Science Careers in Washington DC
The metro area of Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, that stretches across DC, Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia, holds over 293,000 jobs in the tech industry according to CompTIA. This represents 13.1 percent of the workforce in the tech industry, with the top three occupations being in software and web development, cybersecurity, and network administration and support. The average salary is high in the Northeast, only rivaled by Seattle and San Francisco on the West Coast. Along this region, nothing matches the DC area that sits at just over $106,400 per year.