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MADS Information Mentor finds surprising community in online degree program

Lefthand of graphic with orange background features headshot of Jordan Marquez. To right, text reads Faces of UMSI Jordan Marquez above Block M logo with text School of Information below

Friday, 07/09/2021

Information Mentor Jordan Marquez is working toward a master’s degree in applied data science (MADS), serving his peers and holding a program manager role at Stanford University all the while. How is he able to manage it? 

“I try to keep on a consistent schedule to make sure that I can devote enough time to each without feeling burnt out,” Jordan says. “Everyone is so willing to help each other out, you quickly gain a sense of community. Many students are balancing so many unique aspects of their life, and it helps to have a strong sense of belonging while going through the program.” 

Data science really expands across all industries, and it works to solve real-world problems. From the first class I took, I was able to start using that knowledge to solve problems at my full-time job.

Jordan, who lives in San Jose, California, began his MADS journey with UMSI Clinical  Professor Charles Severance’s online Python for Everybody specialization, then began to look for similar online learning experiences. After discovering the MADS program and deciding to enroll because of its multidisciplinary approach, he said the biggest surprise is how connected you feel to classmates and professors in an online environment. 

"There is so much more interaction between students and faculty, and I feel like I have learned so much more than in any other online course I have taken," Jordan says. Read more in Jordan's full Faces of UMSI profile.