How an Internship at Ralph Lauren Brought Jorge Varade to Dataquest
Jorge Varade, Data Scientist
When Jorge Varade finished his degree in business administration, he knew he wanted to get involved with analytics. An internship at Ralph Lauren in sales and marketing analytics taught him the basics of Excel and some more advanced techniques like pivot tables, but he was hungry for more. “I was really interested in data analysis,” he says, “but I wanted to do something more related to, well, Python.”
That’s how he ended up at Belgrave Valley, a London-based bootcamp that uses Dataquest to teach data science programming skills to students.
DataCamp vs. Dataquest
Varade came into the bootcamp without any real programming experience. He had studied a little on his own, looking at videos and trying out a few different platforms, including DataCamp. But he hadn’t really made any headway.
When he got to Belgrave Valley and started using Dataquest, that changed quickly. “What I’ve learned in Python and SQL comes from Belgrave Valley and Dataquest,” he says.
For Jorge, what made the difference was how Dataquest forced him to think and apply what he was learning at each step. That proved to be a strong contrast with the other platforms he’d tried:
I wanted to try DataCamp to see how it was. I’ve done courses from the two platforms, DataCamp and Dataquest, and in my opinion I think Dataquest is much better because it makes you make an effort. On DataCamp, the code you have to write is almost already written for you, so you don’t learn too much. Dataquest makes you use your head and apply the things that you’re learning.
Getting a Job in Data
Since finishing his Dataquest courses at the bootcamp program, Varade has been working as a data analyst — first on a two-week contract for a bank, and then in a full-time role analyzing auto marketing data at Mediacom. After a few months in that role, he moved into another data analyst role — this time at HelloFresh.
But he’s not resting on his laurels. He finished the Data Analyst in Python path, he says, and now he’s switching over to the Data Scientist path so he can keep adding to his skill set. “I will continue [subscribing to] Dataquest,” he says, “because I really like how you explain the courses and the content.”
Advice for Data Science Learners
Varade recommends spending as much time as possible studying, and really immersing yourself in your learning. “Really focus on how Python works, how SQL works, and how the data analysis world works,” he says. “If you really like data analysis, then spend time on it.”