Bayes Impact, a non-profit organisation that helps students use big data for social good, is launching Bayes Impact University Programme at five universities this fall. As VentureBeat report, the programme is aimed at master’s students wanting to use their skills in computer science, statistics and data science to solve “real world problems using big data.”

The University of San Francisco, University of California, Berkeley; New York University; Northwestern University; and Duke University are all expected to offer the programme this year.

Andrew Jiang, Bayes Impact’s executive director, says that the programme is   designed for students who want to apply their final year project to the non-profit sector, rather than the more traditional route of doing a project for larger profit-driven companies.

“Generally what happens with most master programs is, in the last year, they have capstone programs, where they apply their skills to a real project, or a manufactured project,” said Jiang. “What we provide them is instead of doing a project for, let’s say, Yelp, or Twitter, they are doing a project for Red Cross, or a project with another nonprofit or civic organization.”

Students on the programme will work in teams of 2 to 4 people and on a single project for 10 months, where participants will be provided with either local nonprofit clients or global organisations that have local offices.

“They get the full experience what it is like directly making a difference on an organization,” said Jiang. “It’s hard to do it over the phone or over email. It’s really great when the student can go to a homeless shelter and see the impact of their work.”

The new programme will surely receive a lot of demand from students at universities. The Bayes Impact Fellowship — a programme launched by the company last month that provides 20-25 fellows with $4000 stipend while working on a project for 12 months – received over 200 applications for only eight openings.

Some recent projects at Bayes Impact include fraud detected for microfinance charities, helping reduce response times for ambulances and fire trucks, and also helping researchers identify “predictive indicators and biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease.”

Read more here

(Image Credit: K.Oliver)

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