NYU Announces a Center for Data Science and New Graduate Programs

Data science : tech boom :: rocket scientists : space race

Now that we’ve got all this data lying around in great snowdrift-like heaps on our servers, what are we supposed to do with it? Enter the data scientist, which suddenly every startup simply must have. And where there are jobs, universities are sure to follow: NYU announced today the launch of an Initiative in Data Science and Statistics, which involves both the creation of both a Center for Data Science and graduate-degree programs in the field.

The masters program will begin accepting applications later this month. In case you are considering applying and wondering how much math is involved, the center will live within NYU’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences.

The announcement notes that, “The United States faces a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with analytical expertise and 1.5 million managers and analysts with the skills to understand and make decisions based on the analysis of big data.” Gotta love graduating folks into a field with real, money-paying jobs.

Curious about what these brainiacs will be working on? Well, according to the new center’s director, Yann LeCun:

“By making better use of the enormous amount of readily available data, we will be better equipped to address a range of vital questions: How does the brain work? How can we build intelligent machines? What is the structure of the universe? How do we find cures for diseases? How can we predict human behavior?”

Just your basic superhero-origin-story research projects, no big deal.