Already established in her career as a senior operations manager for a leading Toronto self storage company, Annissa returned to school to complete a postgraduate program to up her business data and analytics game. She's done that and then some – her program capstone research project earned her a spot in an international student competition happening in Denver next month.
"We're the only ones in Canada that made it," she said.
Annissa and her project partner will head to Colorado to present their work at the SAS Global Forum Student Symposium. They'll be competing against seven other student teams representing colleges and universities from across the United States.
She's set to graduate from the Analytics for Business Decision Making program in April.
Matching education outcomes with skills needed on the job
The work that gained international attention centres on matching George Brown program outcomes – the essential skills students develop throughout their education – to the skill sets required in associated careers. This could be a great tool to ensure college programs remain relevant to current industry demands.
Annissa and her partner teamed up with SAS Canada and created a database comparing skills used by professionals in the field to the skills various programs are providing. "This will give you a model that will take any sort of job and compare it to its related program at George Brown." The project is called "Bridging the Gap between Post-Secondary Education and Industry Skill Sets."
They've applied their model to the college's culinary and fashion programs. They've also used their database to correlate George Brown programs to jobs in the medical field.
"We're able to do it with all ranges," Annissa said.
Big data career development
Annissa started off as a customer service representative at All Canadian Self-Storage and worked her way up to senior operations manager within five years.
The company has participated in two capstone projects with Analytics for Business Decision Making program.
"Seeing the greatness that came out of this program, my manager said, 'You should take that program, I think it's the next step,'" she explains.
Using analytics and monitoring industry trends has been a key to her company's success and Annissa says this program will help her take her career to the next level.
"This program gave me different skills. It's shown me different tools on how to capture and present data and I'm going to take that back to my organization and I'm going to propose a case to take our data to the next level."