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Author's profile photo Former Member

The DataViz Challenge for MSF

My Path to Tech-Ed && D-Code

Beginning to now, my journey with SAP is a bit unusual. I’m a Biomedical Engineer at the University of Southern California; how would I even know what SAP, let alone ERP stands for? But in the beginning of my second year, I decided to take the intro to ERP systems class by the suggestions of some seniors and never looked back. I’ve gained such a strong foundation in SAP from my courses and still have so much more to learn. At the beginning of our semester, our professor Nitin Kale told the class about the conference, and six of us were chosen to go. We were a little nervous when we arrived at the conference: the idea of being surrounded by thousands of people way more knowledgeable and experienced than you is a bit intimidating. But, each of us would tell you, we had an absolute blast! We have brought back so many things to tell our fellow classmates about the conference, the wonderful people we met, and the learning experiences we had.

The MSF spark

I am the only health-related major that has taken the ERP minor at USC; so, I never hesitated to confirm my attendance for this event. Gladly, I’m not the only person with a passion for non-profit and volunteer work, and I am always ecstatic to join forces with others that have the same desire to help others. Megan McGuire from Doctors without Borders was such an inspiration; her passion for what she does and MSF’s purpose fueled participants’ desire to provide her something valuable she could bring back to MSF. I hope that there will be a continued relationship with SAP and MSF – since the MSF community provides a sense of purpose with such a wonderful cause and the SAP community provides the knowledge and analytical thinking to help MSF reach it’s goals. Personally, it was amazing to combine my passion for data analytics and volunteerism, and I hope to continue contributing in this way.

I walked into the DataViz Challenge for Charity solo Tuesday night but quickly felt like part of a family. It was a bit intimidating at first, since I did not know anyone really well. I had met a few fellow UA students briefly the day before, and they were very welcoming and waved me over. I enjoyed getting to know everyone I met at the event; everyone had a passion for analytics, learning, and helping. There were people from so many different walks of life – which only helped in gaining insights from the data and the group dynamic.

The Data Viz Challenge for Charity

Enter the data, there were quite a number of holes and no data dictionary to accompany the Excel files we were given. Our team consisted of some very bright UA students, a couple of SAP Mentors, and a few others.

The only experience I had with Lumira before the event was downloading it; so, there I was, among some very experienced and smart people, clueless about how to proceed. We spent a good amount of time discussing the data and determining what analyses could (a) be of use to MSF and (b) be accomplished in the short time we had. Ultimately our team split into two – so we could tackle two of the more pressing issues presented to us.

I had been handling the computer for our half, and with that hour and a half of experience, I feel like I could create a decent visualization in Lumira today. . Julien Delvat was very helpful through out the whole process, and by the end, we had developed a pretty coherent story for our presentation, which I was appointed to give.

I loved presenting to the group because they were full of good vibes and were very supportive. While I was up there talking away about what we found interesting, challenges we faced with the data, and ultimately what stood out to us, I realized that everyone at this event was glowing. Each of us felt like we accomplished something, and that type of joy can only appear after a drinking a few beers, analyzing some messy data, and accomplishing something meaningful with some awesome people.

Some Thank You’s

I would like to thank Eamon Ida for coordinating such a successful event, The specified item was not found. for her energy and support (especially post-challenge),  Julien Delvat for being such a great mentor during the challenge,Mitchell Grewer for knocking out his half of our presentation, and all the SAP mentors and Lumira experts that helped out! This is also a general shout-out to everyone that showed up that night; you guys really made the event awesome!

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      Author's profile photo Marilyn Pratt
      Marilyn Pratt

      Your passion and engagement at the event was very welcome.

      Refreshing to see students bring such insights and perspectives.  I know that Megan from MSF was very impressed with you and your peers!

      Keep the content flow going.  We really want to continue the engagement and see you shine in your chosen path.  And as a woman in Technology you are and can be a role model for others thinking about STEM topics.

      Let's keep the momentum and focus.

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      I had no idea you were a Biomedical Engineering major. I was just reading a Harvard Business Review article about how Data Scientists, being such a hot commodity in general, are even more desirable in the medical field.

      It was great to work with you at the DataViz challenge and reading your insights here on SCN. Keep in touch!