Data Science hosts first industry networking event

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Data Science, in partnership with Gateway for Enterprises to Discover Innovation at Waterloo, hosted the first industry networking event on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020. The first cohort of Master of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (MDSAI) students were given the chance to meet, learn from, and network with panelists from different fields of data science, including research, technology, healthcare, finance and insurance. Shortly after the event, this cohort of MDSAI students were applying to jobs for the Spring so it was the perfect opportunity for our students to learn more about the current data science industry, expectations from co-op students and how they can apply what they've learned in the classroom. Learn more about the employment success our first cohort of MDSAI students

The event proved to be a valuable part of the MDSAI student experience and we plan to continue this event in future years. Our MDSAI (co-op) coursework program recognizes the interdisciplinarity of data science and AI, as well as the importance of experiential learning. The program combines strong theoretical training from a total of 9 courses, hands-on experience through a 4-month co-op work term, and networking opportunities like this event, with a goal to train top graduate students for the growing global demand in the fields of data science and artificial intelligence.

Our industry panelists

Andrea Kerswill_Scotiabank FactoryU

Andrea Kerswill

As Head, Scotiabank FactoryU, Andrea Kerswill leads the strategic growth and direction of Scotiabank’s innovation footprint in Waterloo. This includes managing the innovation lab team and deliverables and managing and growing local academic and technology partnerships that create value for customers and shareholders. Andrea was appointed to this new role in 2018. Andrea has over 13 years of experience in the Banking industry. Prior to leading Scotiabank FactoryU, she served as Chief of Staff to Scotiabank’s Executive Vice President of Retail Product. Andrea is a graduate of the University of Waterloo, with a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature.

Mark Morreale_SAS CanadaMark Morreale

Mark Morreale is the National Lead for SAS Canada’s Academic & Innovation Programs. Currently, Mark’s role is to facilitate partnerships Academics, Industry, and the Innovation Sectors.  Before joining SAS, Mark trained as an Epidemiologist and has worked in several Analytics positions for the Pharma Sector, Hospitals, and Government. 

In 2019, Mark released Cortex Analytics Simulation Game\cortex designed to gamify Machine Learning for students of all types. 


Kevin Northrup_CIBCKevin Northrup

Kevin Northrup is CIBC’s Senior Director, Analytics & AI Strategy & Planning. Kevin and his team promote the adoption of analytics and AI across the organization. He oversees strategy, behavioral analytics, use case delivery, talent development, and internal and external partnerships.

Before joining CIBC, Kevin worked at IBM as the GBS Global Leader in Cognitive Digitization, where he led the design and delivery of cognitive digitization solutions for IBM global. One of his key projects was developing the IBM Business Automation Content Analyzer that delivered the ability to read, classify, and semantically normalize scanned and digital documents with a humanistic approach.

Melanie Poulin-Costello_RocheMelanie Poulin-Costello

Melanie Poulin-Costello is Director of Biostatistics in product development at Hoffman La-Roche.  Melanie oversees oncology drug development.  In her time as Mississauga site head, she built a biostatistics department to about 35 biostatisticians currently.  Melanie is also involved in novel approaches to drug development, specifically she is Roche’s business lead on the TransCelerate Placebo/Standard of Care data sharing initiative. Melanie is an active member of Statisticians in the Pharmaceutical Industry (PSI) and often participating in biostatistics seminars and training in the GTA. 

Melanie has her undergrad BMath from the University of Waterloo and an MSc in statistics from University of Victoria.  


Mateusz Ujma_ManulifeMateusz Ujma

Mateusz Ujma is the AVP for Research and Development in Advanced Analytics and A.I. at Manulife. In his role, he is responsible for the development of the Natural Language Processing Centre of Expertise, Analytics Data Lab, and a number of research and development initiatives.

Previously, Mateusz lead the development of Manulife’s Fraud Prevention Centre of Expertise and ran Manulife’s Advanced Analytics team in Manila. Prior to joining Manulife, Mateusz worked at Winton Capital, a leading quantitative hedge fund as well as IBM, Google and NASA.

Mateusz holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Oxford.


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