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Accenture Data Science Scholarship awarded to Hannah Gerits ‘19

Hannah Gerits Data Science

The 2018-19 Accenture Data Science Scholarship has been awarded to Hannah Gerits ‘19. The scholarship includes a full tuition waiver for the Barcelona GSE Data Science master's program and an industrial practicum at the Accenture Analytics Innovation Center during the final term of the academic year.

In order to be considered for the scholarship, candidates must have an outstanding academic background and a demonstrated interest in working as a data scientist in a consulting firm.

This is the third academic year that a Data Science student has received a scholarship from Accenture. The first recipient Daniel Bestard (Data Science '17), completed the Master's Degree and his practicum with Accenture in July 2017 and is now the co-founder of Damavis in Mallorca. The second recipient was Kinga Ritter (Data Science ‘18), who completed the Master’s Degree and practicum with Accenture in July. She now works as an Analyst in Accenture’s Barcelona office.

Accenture continues to support and recruit Master’s students from the Barcelona GSE because they display the skills that the consulting firm are looking for. In addition to the Scholarship, Accenture routinely comes to campus for recruitment talks and to participant in events held by the Career Services department.  Over the past few years, Accenture has recruited Master’s students from the Barcelona GSE to work as analysts and consultants in their offices in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Johannesburg, Milan, Stockholm, and Verona.

Hannah Gerits has a Master’s Degree in Economics and Finance from LUISS Guido Carli University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Maastricht University School of Business and Economics. She has also worked as a researcher at the Big Data Laboratory in Italy and as a Trainee at the European Central Bank in Germany. Below she talks more about her previous work and academic experiences, why she chose to study Data Science and the value it will bring to her role at Accenture.


Interview: Hannah Gerits '19, recipient of the Accenture Data Science Scholarship

1. What made you decide to study a Master’s in Data Science?

It was a gradual decision. As I studied Economics during my bachelor’s and master’s degrees and then worked at the European Central Bank, I realized the importance of being a statistical and computing literate not only in research, but in any field which requires data handling. I wanted to learn new tools that I could use to better address the issues that we faced during my time at university and the bank, and that I could extent to a broader range of fields of study in my future work.

2. As someone who has previously studied Economics and Finance, do you find it advantageous to do your Master's in Data Science at an institution that specializes in social sciences, such as the Barcelona GSE?

Joining this master program has been a very positive decision in this sense. As it is offered within a Social Sciences department, this course integrates topics of Economics and Finance with Data Science, and nicely builds on top of what I’ve studied in previous years. Another advantage I found is that, because of the diversity in backgrounds of the students –  such as Law, Engineering, Mathematics or Physics – we learn a lot from each other on how to approach, perceive, and handle data problems.

3. You have previously worked as a researcher at LUISS Guido Carli University as well as a Trainee at the European Central Bank. Did these positions introduce you to the world of Data Science? Even though they were different roles, were there similar challenges between the two?

The project I worked on at LUISS was a first introduction to Data Science which related to an application of sentiment analysis in Italian. My work at the ECB concerned analyzing micro-data with the aim of tackling monetary policy issues. Although these experiences dealt with completely different objectives, I did face very similar challenges at each step. Both tasks followed a similar procedure in terms of how to handle the data, and required to have a certain knowledge of the tools available from cleaning the data to the sound presentation of the results.

4. The Accenture scholarship includes the possibility to conduct your industry practicum with Accenture. How do you anticipate that the Master’s will prepare you to add value that you may not have been able to do before the program?

I expect that this master will greatly enhance my knowledge of the statistical, mathematical, and computing tools to tackle real-life applications and to work on the projects offered at Accenture. After two months, not only am I already gaining a better understanding of the tools that exist, but I am already capable of choosing from a greater variety of them, which is very exciting. Doing the industrial practicum at Accenture will then be an opportunity to apply this newly-integrated knowledge to the wide-range of topics they work on.


 Master Program in Data Science

 Accenture Data Science Scholarship

 Accenture Analytics Innovation Center