Merrimack College’s master of science programs in data science and business analytics has been ranked #10 in the country for best value by ValueColleges.com. The prestigious ranking among the “Top 50 Best Value Online Big Data Programs 2020” was based on mid-career salary potential, US News and World Report rankings, as well as program tuition. According to ValueColleges.com, the programs recognized in its rankings have proven track records of job market value and practical skills training, characteristics that are the hallmark of Merrimack College’s Data Science, Business Analytics, and Healthcare Analytics graduate programs.
Merrimack’s MS in data science and business analytics programs were also ranked #25 in the nation out of 139 online Master’s Degrees in Data Science by Intelligent.com. The Intelligent.com ranking was determined based on program strength, student readiness, return on investment, cost, and student engagement.
Real-World Skills Aligned with Industry Needs
Recent Merrimack graduate Briana Schumacher is grateful for the practical skills she learned throughout the Business Analytics program, ensuring that she was prepared to be a competitive candidate once she entered the job market. Briana shared, “the Data Science program challenged me to apply data analytics to solve real-world problems. For example, in my Data Mining class, we used COVID-19 related variables and observations to make predictions on how to slow down the rate of infection in the United States.”
“Our graduate programs enable professionals to acquire the skills needed to change careers and enter the field of data science and analytics, or to advance within the field.” says department chair Dr. Michael Bradley. The programs, now in their fifth year, have graduated 60 students in the past 12 months.
Merrimack’s data science and analytics programs were designed with input from an industry advisory council to ensure that students graduate with skills aligned to the needs of employers. The project-based curriculum teaches students in-demand skills such as data mining, predictive analytics, and machine learning. Students graduate prepared to immediately apply what they have learned in the classroom to solve real-world problems. With small class sizes, strong relationships are formed between students and experienced professors. Each student is guaranteed personal time with their professor, providing students with full access to their extensive knowledge and expertise. Every faculty member has a significant industry track record, allowing them to teach current skills and techniques based on their own, real-world experiences.
According to Dr. Bradley, “it is this balance of quality and individual student focus that leads to the program’s ongoing success.”