The Silver State is a great destination for a data science degree. We’ll lay out aid opportunities, employment scenarios, and professional networks that lead to a winning hand.
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Southern Methodist University
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University of Denver
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University of California, Berkeley
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University of Dayton
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Have your heart set on Nevada? Check out our list of Nevada data science degrees and certificates.
Studying Data Science in Nevada
Be honest. If you’re not from Nevada, you’re thinking that all it has are casinos and deserts. While it has both in spades, the state has leveraged its climate and gaming industry to stimulate tech growth.
The Desert Research Institute (DRI), a non-teaching arm of the Nevada System of Higher Education, is involved in big data in a variety of ways. The institute conducts research in a span of areas including geology, pollution exposure, atmospheric modeling, and more.
In southern Nevada, you’ll find flashy casinos. If you haven’t stepped into one recently, they’re high-tech. Pull levers and quarters have been replaced by personalized touch screen menus and monetized keycards.
Data Science Research & Initiatives at Nevada Universities
University of Nevada-Reno (UNR) and University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) are two universities in Nevada that are contributing to the data science field:
- As a flagship campus within commuting distance of the state capital, UNR has a ready-built infrastructure to attract funding. The Nevada Center for Surveys, Evaluation, and Statistics conducts many of the surveys for state departments, and its Statistics and Informatics Lab lets students advise businesses, hospitals and state agencies on statistical research methodologies and data analysis.
- UNR’s Nevada Research Data Center (NRDC) is charged with obtaining evidence of the environmental impact of solar energy, climate change within the state, and pre-drought conditions in remote areas.
- UNLV is also doing a lot in the area of data science. Step one was building the National Supercomputing Institute. Since then, the university has constructed an on-campus research lab, the Data Hub and has linked its researchers with a local supercomputer known as Cherry Creek II. The next step, in 2016, was requesting half a million dollars from the state for an Institute for Big Data.
- The Nevada Institute of Personalized Medicine, also at UNLV, is stacked with researchers who are using big data to improve patient results, enough to support a Division of Health and Medical Informatics. Researchers there get a piece of the processing power at Cherry Creek.
Online Data Science Programs in Nevada
Nevada universities offering data science programs online include Western Governors University (WGU) Nevada.
Online Master’s Degrees in Data Science
Students with a solid IT and/or programming background can get their fill of data mining, visualization and management in WGU Nevada’s MS in Data Analytics program. The degree not only prepares students for professional certifications, but also builds the following credentials into the program’s curriculum and costs: SAS Certified Base Programmer, and SAS Certified Statistical Business Analyst. Before graduating, students finish a synthesizing capstone project.
Are you a nurse? WGU Nevada’s MSN in Nursing-Nursing Informatics is for RNs or BSNs who want to leverage health data to improve patient health. The specialization ensures nurses get a heavy dose of data analytics and modeling – and prescribes an internship and capstone to ensure hands-on practice.
Data Science Scholarships in Nevada
Both UNLV and UNR take care of their best graduate students, typically through paid teaching and research assistantships.
University of Nevada-Las Vegas
- Graduate Assistantship: Students in the MS in Applied Economics and Data Intelligence program can secure a graduate assistantship. Earning an assistantship entails committing to help a professor with research or teaching duties. It comes with a monthly stipend, lower tuition, and – for nonresidents – a tuition waiver.
- Hall Fellowship: The Department of Economics provides certain high-performing grad students additional funding – $1,000 to $5,000 a year – via the Hall Fellowship.
University of Nevada-Reno
- MSIS Graduate Assistantship: After acceptance into the MS in Information Systems program, you can apply for a research or teaching assistantship with the program by emailing your resume to the program chair. Students work in exchange for tuition assistance.
- Statistics and Data Science PhD Funding: Entry to the doctoral data science program automatically comes with free tuition and a $17,000 annual stipend.
Data Science Events in Nevada
A good introduction to tech networks can be found at either the Innevation Center in Vegas or the Innevation Center at UNR. Both co-working spaces are run by local company Switch, which is building the biggest data center in the world. UNR students can utilize their center for free as an opportunity to hobnob with tech entrepreneurs. UNLV students and recent grads, meanwhile, should bookmark its meetup calendar. Data science-specific startups in both cities are below.
Data Science Meetups & Communities in Nevada
- Data Science Las Vegas: This non-profit group is a way to meet others who are interested in the field of data science. The group discusses data science tools and how to use them to best benefit businesses, non-profits, and other institutions.
- Big Data Developers Las Vegas: IBM is behind this meetup, which convenes roughly once a month. Hour 1 covers a specific technology IBM wants you to know about. Hours 2 to 4 are devoted to collaboration.
Data Science Conferences & Workshops in Nevada
In the world of data science, Innovation Enterprise puts together two-day big data summits across the world, many of which land in Sin City. For example, in January 2018 it held the Big Data Innovation Summit and the Business Analytics Innovation Summit back to back. Both conferences attract business managers and executives who want to learn directly from data scientists how they can improve their operations. Here’s an event that rolls the dice year after year:
- TDWI Las Vegas: This is a weeklong training – with multiple courses to choose from – for anyone who wants to receive a consolidated intro to analytics or improve their skills. The price is in the thousands of dollars and increases the more days you stay. However, students get in for half-price.
Data Science Jobs in Nevada
Nevada has several Fortune 1000 companies. Some are in the casino/gaming industry, among them Las Vegas Sands Corporation, Boyd Gaming, and Caesars. Casinos want to limit losses and game developers want to keep players on their machines. In-house data analysts help them see patterns in players’ habits. Those jobs are primarily based in Vegas, but game makers in Reno also attract talent. They include big players International Game Technology (IGT) and the much smaller Ruby Seven Studios.
Not a video poker fan? Try Quertle, a small Vegas-area company that has created biomedical AI and data visualization platforms. Up north, Reno trades off its high-desert environs and accessibility to Silicon Valley to attract companies that need room to innovate. In fact, Reno is a top destination for companies leaving Silicon Valley with Apple, Google, and Tesla all having a presence there.
Data Scientist Salaries in Nevada
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, computer and information research scientists (including research scientists) made an average of $103,070 in Nevada in 2019. The top 10% of jobs earned $146,020.
Data Science Programs in Nevada
We found 3 universities in Nevada 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.