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KUPCE Big Data

2017 & 2018 Big Data for Managers & Decision Makers Workshop Instructors

The Big Data for Managers and Decision Makers workshop typically consists of three half-day sessions held at the KU Edwards Campus in Kansas City. Past instructors and topics covered in each session include:

Session 1

Raj Nair, YotaBites

Raj Nair is a graduate of the University of Mysore and the University of Kansas. He has held leadership positions at IBM, EMC, Digital Clout and Penton where he worked to build high performing development teams and big data platforms. He is the author of numerous articles about innovations and the impact of Big Data.

Nair helps organizations understand and implement Big Data paradigms and technologies. He is an expert in helping businesses re-invent systems, processes and products by identifying and unlocking data issues all along the transformation pipeline from source to applications.

He has been honored with the EMC Excellence Gold Award and an Equity Award for Top Performance by IBM.

During the first session of the workshop, Raj covers Data-Driven Decisions and the Big Data Technological Landscape.

Session 2

Piero Ferrante, C2FO

Piero Ferrante is the Director of Data Science at C2FO. He and his team are focused on optimizing C2FO’s capital markets through applied machine learning and the development of quantitative risk management systems. In the past he has applied his expertise in healthcare, telecom, insurance, and mobile advertising at Fortune 500 companies and startups. He holds a M.S. in Predictive Analytics from Northwestern University, a B.S. in Finance and Management Information Systems from the University of Delaware, and is an adjunct professor of Text Analytics at Rockhurst University. Piero also helps organize the Kansas City Data Science Meetup and advises Play-it Heath, a digital health engagement solution, on algorithms and data strategy.

During the second session of the workshop, Piero covers The Intersection of Data Science and Big Data and The Constraints and Limitations of Big Data.

Session 3

Michelle Brush, Cerner

Michelle Brush graduated from Missouri State University with a BS in Computer Science, studied Software Engineering at the University of Kansas, and is a self-described math geek turned computer geek. In her current role as an Engineering Director for Cerner Corporation, she is responsible for the data ingestion and record processing platform for Cerner’s Population Health solutions. She has developed algorithms and data structures for pathfinding, search, compression, and data mining in embedded as well as distributed systems. One of her most notable career accomplishments was her leadership role in reconstructing Cerner’s software engineer development program in 2013, which she personally oversaw until the end of 2014. She also leads several engineering education programs and culture initiatives. Outside of Cerner, she is the chapter leader for the Kansas City chapter of Girl Develop It, and one of the conference organizers for Midwest.io.

Brush was recently honored with the Rising Trendsetter STEMMY award. The Rising Trendsetter Award is given to a woman in STEMM areas with less than 20 years of experience and has demonstrated significant achievements early in their career.

During the first half of the final session of the workshop, Michelle covers Big Data Resources and HR.

Jonathan Wagner, Big Bang

Jonathan Wagner, a graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, spent more than a dozen years as a software developer before he and Jason von Nieda launched Big Bang’s Internet of Things software in 2014 to make connected devices smoothly — and quickly — communicate.

The cloud services platform helps developers create applications that communicate with IoT devices in real-time by connecting with their hardware and providing the software to enable its integration. The solution, which eliminates the need for servers or other infrastructure, is available for Android and iOS developers.

A recent winner of the LauchKC grants competition during Techweek Kansas City, Big Bang is addressing a huge, growing market with its development kit. More than 8 billion existing “things” — phones, watches and cars — are connected. That number is expected to reach more than 50 billion connected devices within five years. That means way more gadgets and gizmos than just everyday devices. Many new industries are identifying use cases, which should help Wagner’s firm.

Wagner has been a principal employee in two previous technology companies with successful acquisitions. Prior to Big Bang, Wagner created backend technology for Massively Multiplayer Online Games, Virtual Worlds, and simulations. Technology partners included companies such as Disney, Mattel, Ubisoft, Viacom and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

Jonathan concludes the workshop during the second half of the final session by covering New Directions and Opportunities for Innovation Using Big Data.

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Justine Hamilton
  Program Manager

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