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Bureau of Statistics hosts first-ever Data Science Camp

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Participants of the Data Science Camp and the Bureau’s team (DPI Photo)

Hosted at its Head office in Georgetown, the camp introduced the students to the basics of Data collection, analysis, visualization, and interpretation while fostering collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity. The activity forms part of the efforts of the Bureau to foster an interest in data science among the school-aged population.

The Chief Statistician being interviewed by two of the students

During the three (3) days activity, the students were immersed in fun, engaging and educational exercises and presentations focused on formulating research questions, Survey design, sampling, Data Cleaning, Analysis, visualization, and interpretation.

The students were given the opportunity to conduct a survey among a sample of the organization’s staff, which was focused on staff well-being in the workplace. This allowed them to further develop their interpersonal skills.

Participants of the Data Science Camp and the Bureau’s team

They were then tasked with analyzing the data they collected, displaying it on various graphs and charts and delivering presentations with their findings.

Among the students sharing their experience was Queen’s College Student, Shabaka Yisrael. “It was a very fun experience and I wish the camp would have lasted longer instead of just three days. I fully understand now the types of data and the scientific data process. I would definitely participate again,” he said.

Precious Bristol of the New Campbellville Secondary school said: “My experience was quite fun, I made some new friends and I think I would love to come back again.” She added that she learnt about data cleaning and data analysis. According to her, it was a good experience interviewing staff, but she was particularly nervous interviewing the Chief Statistician

Findings of the staff survey are presented by two of the students

This data science camp was not only a learning experience for the students, but also for the Bureau, since it will lend towards the tailoring of future engagements with the school-aged population. The intention is to make this an annual activity and build on the first experience, expanding to include students from schools in other regions and developing a wider curriculum .

Chief Statistician, Errol La Cruez in his address to the students posited that Data is the most valuable commodity in the world. He told them that the future of human civilization will depend heavily on how well data is used to our advantage.

Participants during the theoretical aspect of the camp

“It’s important that as future leaders in Guyana and in the world, you develop an understanding and you build that tool kit that is needed, that is vital for your survival in a future that is going to be even more dependent on data and statistics than it is right now,” he emphasized.

He thanked the students for their participation in the data Science camp and encouraged them to share their experiences with their colleagues. (Department of Public Information) 

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