Building Bridges with Industry


The academic experience for many Kennesaw State students reaches well beyond the classroom. One of our primary goals on our path to being a truly student-centric university includes providing meaningful, engaged learning opportunities. The Analytics and Data Science Institute is an example of how, working across disciplines, the university is achieving that goal while partnering with companies across the region to find solutions to real-world challenges.

Through the Institute, students at the doctoral, master's and undergraduate levels work with companies like Georgia Pacific, Coca Cola, SPANX and Equifax to solve data-centric challenges and collaborate on applied research grants. Every semester, students from multiple colleges have opportunities not only to learn important skills related to analytics, but also to gain experience working within interdisciplinary teams in a consultative engagement. In addition to analytics, students develop skills related to project management, communications and leadership. The project sponsors also provide students with opportunities to come to their offices to deliver final presentations.

These corporate project sponsors seek out our faculty and our students, who have built an incredible reputation in analytics and data science. The Institute also is the home to the first Ph.D. program in data science in the nation, and remains the only one of its kind in the state. The Ph.D. program anticipates its first graduates this May.

Established by Dr. Jennifer Priestley, professor of statistics and data science and associate dean of the Graduate College, the Institute is a bridge between industry and academia. Dr. Priestley, who also oversees the Institute, has created an opportunity for our students to develop real-world, practical, market-driven skills in advance of graduation, while meeting the analytical needs of local companies.

With this experience through the Institute, KSU students compete for some of the best data science and analytics jobs out there, and solving real business problems with real data gives them the edge they need in the marketplace.

Pamela Whitten


Written By Whitten