Granite Staters searching for a data science program shouldn’t take New Hampshire for granted. It’s a hotbed of research and academic activity in the discipline. We’ll explore the emerging tech scene and give you a list of data science degrees, report back on jobs and professional communities, and even highlight online options.
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Studying Data Science in New Hampshire
In 2017, NH EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) produced the New Hampshire University Research & Industry Plan. That plan identified three areas in which New Hampshire universities could leverage existing industries and strengthen them: advanced manufacturing, information systems and biosciences. The information systems component specifically addresses machine learning and data analytics, while the biosciences area looks to biotech. All of that is good news for data science students and professors hoping to acquire research funding.
Data Science Research & Initiatives at New Hampshire Universities
Since biosciences and data analytics are the way forward, it’s little wonder that health informatics features so prominently in graduate level studies at Dartmouth College and University of New Hampshire. For those outside the health field, Southern New Hampshire University maintains its business school roots, and UNH, as the state’s flagship public university, maintains a diverse set of programs and research interests.
- The UNH Analytics & Data Science department runs a speaker series and partnered with IBM in 2017 so that its students could access the analytical computing power of Watson Analytics. The data processed through this partnership may find its way to the school’s Data Visualization Research Lab, a cross-departmental facility that specializes in ocean mapping. Not everything is strictly scholastic. Wildcat Predictions lets students forecast opponents’ defensive strategies in upcoming football games; graduate analytics students went 8-3 in 2016.
- The founder of UNH’s analytics and data science programs pulls double duty as a faculty member with the multidisciplinary UNH Connectivity Research Center, which develops cutting-edge communications technology. Its first major project is the Smart Cities Initiative; one of the initiative’s primary goals is using transportation data to predict traffic and pedestrian patterns, helping people move about cities more efficiently.
- UNH also has a Bioinformatics Core facility that receives research funding from New Hampshire INBRE (IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence). The school’s Hubbard Center for Genome Studies is then able to provide internal and external researchers with access to data and expensive lab equipment.
- UNH conducts some bioinformatics work, but Dartmouth College has a whole Department of Biomedical Data Science, complete with a whopping eight laboratories, including the Microbiome Mediation Modeling Lab, the Social Computing & Health Informatics Lab, and the Statistical Genetics Laboratory. The researchers within these labs have links to a dozen Dartmouth-based centers and institutes, including the Bioinformatics Service Center, which runs clinical trails and maintains research databases on a number of diseases, and the Informatics Collaboratory for Design, Development and Dissemination (ic3d), a team of data scientists that consults on academic research across Dartmouth’s health sciences ecosystem.
- Away from the Ivy League, it’s only natural for Southern New Hampshire University to run oodles of data science-related programs – the school was an early adopter of analytics within higher ed. For example, its predictive analytics platform informs instructors when online students seem to be struggling.
Online Data Science Programs in New Hampshire
Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is the state’s biggest player in online education. Although it’s private, it manages to compete on cost with publicly funded University of New Hampshire, which runs an online certificate program. Students looking for a data science degree with a healthcare focus can turn to a third institution, New England College.
Online Graduate Certificates in Data Science
University of New Hampshire’s Online Graduate Certificate in Data Science is geared toward working professionals who hold any sort of bachelor’s degree but have experience in a quantitative field. The four-course program quickly gets technical, requiring students to get comfortable with statistical modeling and teaching them how to program so they can mine data. It’s particularly useful for aspiring business analysts, marketers and researchers, not to mention computer scientists looking for a new skill set.
Online Master’s Degrees in Data Science
Southern New Hampshire University offers a slew of online data science programs. The standard is its MS in Data Analytics, a 12-course program that blends the technical and managerial realities of collecting and analyzing big data to make organizational improvements. Like all SNHU programs, it concludes with a synthesizing capstone project. SNHU’s MBA in Business Intelligence features some crossover but its analytics features are sprinkled in as individual courses rather than integrated into the traditional MBA curriculum of marketing, finance and management techniques. For meatier data, you might turn to the MS in Marketing with a Marketing Research and Analytics concentration. Or you can crank up the technical material even further and enroll in SNHU’s MS in Information Technology-Data Analytics. That program is aimed at current IT pros who want to branch into big data while gaining the breadth of knowledge necessary to manage an IT department.
Healthcare administrators, meanwhile, can choose between two SNHU degrees to propel their career. The MBA in Healthcare Informatics is a traditional program with just a sprinkling of IT and health-themed coursework. The International MBA in Healthcare Informatics does the same but with a multinational focus attractive for people working in international companies. For a more balanced blend of informatics and business coursework, look to New England College’s MBA with a concentration in Health Informatics. It admits both patient-focused health workers and IT pros trying to move up the career ladder.
Data Science Events in New Hampshire
Data Science Meetups & Communities in New Hampshire
New Hampshire is fairly small, but it’s well-connected to other New England states, so look for groups that hold events across the region, such as the Insights Association New England Chapter and the New England Nursing Informatics Consortium (NENIC). The following, however, stick to Manchester, Nashua and Concord:
- Database Developer Analytics with DB2 LUW: This group for professional data users in Manchester, established in 2017, covers IBM’s DB2 database software and its applications for Linux, Unix and Windows (LUW). No strict agenda exists, but expect discussions of how to integrate different programming languages, such as R and Python, into the software, with a heavy emphasis on one of IBM’s strengths: machine learning.
- NH Data Science Meetup (Manchester): Manchester’s other group for data junkies covers a broader range of topics but skews toward participants well-versed in computer science. The standard meeting includes one or two presentations from outside speakers on topics they’re passionate about. Past speakers have discussed leveraging machine learning in healthcare settings, using geospatial tools in Python, and analyzing results to rank college sports teams.
- Science Cafe New Hampshire: Science Cafe meets at a Nashua pub the first Wednesday of the month before coming to a Concord sports bar the third Tuesday of the month. Over food and drinks, attendees get two hours worth of presentations on everything from wine chemistry to composting, with software developers and university mathematicians and economists showing up often to talk about big data, polling, and machine learning algorithms.
Data Science Conferences & Workshops in New Hampshire
If you want a huge conference dedicated to data science, take the train to Boston. Below are a couple of niche conferences that alight in the Granite State every few years:
- NEDRA Annual Conference: The New England Development Research Association (NEDRA), a local chapter of the Association of Professional Researchers for Advancement (APRA), is a group of fundraisers constantly looking for new ways to harness data and increase donations. Though NEDRA is based in Massachusetts, its two-day annual conference is often held in Portsmouth. The event welcomes presentations on data-driven wealth analysis, R-based prospect research tools, and recent trends in charitable giving.
- Rapid Insight Conference: Rapid Insight is an analytics company based in Conway, New Hampshire, that started holding a conference for users out of its office years ago. The event has since grown to a three-day affair that touches down across New England but frequently comes back to New Hampshire. The speakers are strictly academics from around the country, which makes sense: Rapid Insight conducts analytics services primarily for universities.
Data Science Jobs in New Hampshire
Let’s look back at the growth areas identified in the 2017 New Hampshire University Research & Industry Plan. The first was advanced manufacturing – essentially taking the Granite State’s traditional manufacturing base and updating it for 21st century products. While data scientists may have trouble breaking into that sector, they should be comfortable fitting into the other two: information systems and biosciences. Data analysts are already gobbled up by Liberty Mutual, a Boston insurer with offices in Portsmouth and Dover. And the BioTech/MedTech Cluster of the NH High Tech Council keeps tabs on the latest developments in a state that employs a high concentration of bioscience professionals. It’s attracting more through large-scale projects like the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute, part of “Silicon Millyard” in Manchester.
The pro-tech focus within the state has allowed a host of small to midsize businesses to pop up from Nashua to Conway. Nashua startup Forcivity creates analytic applications for use within Salesforce. It took home second place in the 2016 TechOut competition put on by the NH High Tech Council, a local consortium of businesses focused on workforce development. DataGravity, also in Nashua, has trademarked its own data visualization software. To the northeast, Dover’s Weather Analytics predicts the effects of climate on crops and property so that insurers and business managers can take appropriate risks. And Rapid Insight in little Conway has its own predictive modeling software, though it primarily focuses on higher education markers such as student retention.
Data Scientist Salaries in New Hampshire
According to figures from Salary.com, data scientists in New Hampshire earn between $120,000 and $130,000 on average, with only slight variations between metropolitan areas. That mostly corresponds with official tallies from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which reported that the average New Hampshirite computer and information research scientist (a designation that includes data scientists) earned $128,000 in 2016, the fourth-highest rate in the nation.
We found 4 universities in New Hampshire offering Masters of Data Science programs (and/or closely related programs, like MS in Analytics / Masters in Business Analytics).
If you represent a university and would like to contact us about editing any of our listings, or adding new programs, please send an email to info (at) mastersindatascience.org.