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Rick Hutley is the director of University of the Pacific’s new master of science in analytics program housed at the university’s San Francisco campus. It is the fourth new program announced for the campus at 155 Fifth St. in downtown San Francisco. Others include a doctoral program in audiology, a master’s degree program in food studies, and an equivalency program in music therapy.

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Pacific program will help meet nationwide demand for data scientists

Feb 24, 2015

University of the Pacific this fall will begin showing working professionals not only how to crunch data, but how to use the information to help their organizations prosper.

Pacific's School of Engineering and Computer Science is offering a new master of science degree in analytics, a high-paying field facing an acute shortage of professionals. The program will be based at the university's new, state-of-the-art campus in San Francisco.

With courses such as Data Engineering, Machine Learning and Data Visualization, the program will combine rigorous academic training in analytics along with the practical experience of working on real-world case studies of issues facing industries today.

"We're very excited to be able to offer training in what are increasingly becoming vital skills for many industries - health care, business, technology, law, economics, even sports," said Steven Howell, dean of Pacific's School of Engineering and Computer Science. "The demand for data scientists today is extremely high, and will remain so well into the future. This flexible program has been specifically designed to give working professionals an opportunity to develop their skills and be successful in their careers, while helping the organizations they work for to flourish."

The program will be based at Pacific's new campus at 155 Fifth St. in downtown San Francisco to meet the needs of the university's Bay Area and Silicon Valley corporate customers and their employees and to enhance the practical experience opportunities for students.

"Our San Francisco campus is the perfect location for this program," said Rick Hutley, program director and past vice president of innovation at Cisco Systems. "The Silicon Valley and Bay Area are a hub for health care, finance and technology. We will be educating the next generation of employees in these industries on how to find and analyze data to derive the actionable insights that will enable their companies to take full advantage of 'big data,' or the exponential growth and availability of data today."

Hutley said there is an acute shortage of professionals with skills in data analytics. A study by McKinsey Global Institute indicated that by 2018 the demand for people with such skills in the United States alone will be 50 percent to 60 percent higher than the available talent pool. The shortage of data scientists and the increasing demand for their expertise means data scientists are among the highest paid professionals today. A recent KDnuggets survey indicated that the average salary for a data scientist in North America was about $135,000 in 2014, with analytics managers earning about 25 percent more.

Students in the analytics program can earn a master of science degree after taking courses using a flexible hybrid delivery system of classroom and real-time online techniques. The degree will be conducted in three semesters over a year-long program.

"The online activities in the program are not like online courses typically offered by other universities where lectures are recorded and students interact with their professors through email" said Hutley "Our students and professors interact in real time through live video sessions, which aligns with Pacific's reputation for providing a high quality, personal learning experience."

The program will also offer certificates for working professionals who need additional education in specific areas of data analytics for career advancement, but who are not seeking a full master's degree. The certificates can be combined toward a more advanced certificate or degree.

Analytics is the fourth new academic program to be offered at Pacific's San Francisco campus. Others include a doctoral program in audiology, a master's degree program in food studies, and an equivalency program in music therapy.

Visit for more information about the program and to apply. And read about how analytics can be used in varied fields.

Media contact:

Keith Michaud | 209.946.3275 (office) | 209.470.3206 (cell) |

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