CADS and Asia Pacific University to upskill science technology graduates

  • Programme is open to students of all backgrounds as long as requirements are met
  • Business students will make good data scientists as they will understand output better


(From left) APU Deputy Vice Chancellor Prof D. Ir Vinesh Thiruselvam; APU Vice Chancellor Prof Ron Edwards; CADS founder & CEO Sharala Axryd; and CADS Corporate Communications principal lead Nellie Ravendran

“THE 20.7% unemployment rate for science and technology graduates, which is the highest unemployment rate among graduates in the country, needs to be addressed,” declares Sharala Axyrd, founder and chief executive officer of The Center of Applied Data Science (CADS).

CADS signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) with Asia Pacific University (APU) on April 23 to position APU as a Digital Premier Tech and Data Driven University. This joint effort aims to address the gap between employers and fresh science and technology graduates. The MoA was signed between Sharala and and vice chancellor of APU, Professor Ron Edwards.

Through the MoA, APU will also be able to assist in recommending the Data Star, a training programme by CADS as a graduate transitioning programme, as well as talent supply for the data science enablement training and mentorship programme.

Although most participants of the Data Star programme in the past have come from a science background, Sharala made it clear that those applying need not necessarily be from the field of science though pre-requisites include programming skills and some knowledge of statistics. “All the data professionals we hire are driven by a purpose greater than money.”

In fact, according to Sharala, due to the high demand and limited supply of data scientists and analysts, many of those trained also hold the privilege of selecting their own jobs. The programme entails 27 days of bootcamp and four months of industry immersion.

Dispelling fear among those interested in data science but perceive it to be too technical, the deputy vice chancellor of APU, Professor Dr Vinesh Thiruselvam said: “That’s not the case because the programming is not that hard. There’s enough tools in the market for any layman user to start learning and using the tools. In fact, it is the business student that will make a better data scientist because he or she will understand the output better.”

Most importantly, the MoA will open the opportunity for faculty to upgrade their knowledge and skills to be future-ready themselves, allowing them to impart the skills to students to be industry-ready.

In addition to industrial talks, workshops and introducing new modules, Sharala said: “We are looking forward to doing all of this with APU and eventually even developing new degree courses with them.”

Professor Ron Edwards said, “The exposure our students will receive from this partnership will give heightened value to their degrees and their standing in the eyes of future employers.”


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