JGI Student Experience Profiles: Richard Pyle (Ask-JGI Data Science Support 2021-22)
My time with Ask-JGI over the past year has given me so much more than I could have expected. From advising on data visualisation for Russian Hip Hop, to deep learning for rainfall prediction, events organisation, and even possible collaboration on a funded research project. I applied to Ask-JGI with the primary goal of getting exposure to data science in fields outside my own, and a feel for how I could translate my skills into advice in those fields. I have most definitely succeeded in those goals, but I have also gained so much more.
One of the things I did not expect was how valuable the ‘cohort’ experience of Ask-JGI would be. Not only does working collaboratively with other Ask-JGI students improve the quality of advice we give, and remove the need for an individual to know everything, it naturally builds both a professional and social network. These relationships were also built by organising events together, which was another experience I did not anticipate being part of Ask-JGI, but am glad it was. Events organisation and facilitation is not something commonly in a postgrad’s remit, and it was a refreshing change of pace. Being part of the Bristol Data & AI Showcase was especially enjoyable. Meeting and greeting people as they arrived at an event which I helped to contribute to was a lovely experience.
The staff at the JGI have also been fantastic. The level of support and understanding has been incredible. When I’ve been busy with research commitments, every effort has been made to ensure time management is possible. Then, in times where I’ve had more time to commit to JGI tasks I’ve felt there was always something exciting to contribute to and I was trusted with a good level of responsibility in executing it. Overall, I would recommend being part of Ask-JGI to any postgrad looking to broaden their horizons to new fields and experiences.