This is a weekly series where I interview entrepreneurs & creators overcoming their challenges & building a business from scratch.
Avery Smith is a course creator currently building Data Career Jumpstart to help students start their own data careers & transition to high-paying jobs in data science
Here we go through a short 5-minute interview to understand more about his journey. Cheers to Avery for doing this ✨
1. How did you get started with building Data Career Jumpstart?
I studied Chemical Engineering & worked as a chemical lab technician but really didn’t enjoy what I was doing.
I discovered data science & became hooked upon learning more about it. I self-studied, landed a data scientist job, & eventually got a Master’s degree in analytics.
I started Data Career Jumpstart by wanting to help people who wanted to go through a similar career pivot as I did.
I thought my pivot could have been more optimized & I decided to create a program focused on learning the necessary skills & land a high paying data science job
2. How was your experience learning to code from scratch & then transition to machine learning?
I actually wrote my first line of code when I was in 6th grade, and then coded somewhat regularly in college as an engineer.
But it wasn’t super easy. There were definitely nights when my code was NOT doing what I wanted it to, and as a result, I spent hours debugging.
Going from more basic coding to data science & machine learning also had its own challenges. But practice makes perfect :)
I think I’ve hit the 10,000-hour mark & now that advanced coding is more routine.
But don’t get me wrong, I still use Google & StackOverflow all the time!
3. What made you realize the love for teaching data science?
Honestly, it’s just such a cool topic & I love sharing what I think is cool.
Also, it really pays off for me when my students go from making $40,000 to $80,000 in a few months.
To help someone reach that life-changing amount of money is the best feeling.
4. You also have a Youtube channel on cool topics centered around Data Science. How do you keep up with the youtube creator journey while also running a business?
Honestly, I don’t really. It takes at least 4-6 hours to make a video.
But I know YouTube is very important in terms of brand recognition & traffic so I recently dedicated an entire month to YouTube where I built 30 data science projects in 30 days.
It was an absolute grind & I really couldn’t do much more than the campaign, but it took me from 1.5k subscribers to 6.5k.
And the best part is, those videos are all VERY evergreen & will continue to provide my viewers' value year after year.
5. What advice would you give to entrepreneurs/course creators who are trying to grow their business & to those who are just starting out?
- Who are trying to grow their business?
I think if you have a business or course that is already established & you’re trying to grow, the biggest advice I’d give is to invest in yourself, your learning, & your network. I always find that when I’m learning from others, I make more money.
- Who are just starting out?
If you’re just starting out, start small. Build an audience (I think LinkedIn, TikTok, YouTube Shorts are the best places right now), and launch a small, affordable offer. Build from there.
Where can people learn more about you?
You can find me on LinkedIn - Avery Smith
Course Page: https://www.datacareerjumpstart.com/
Youtube Channel on Data Science: https://www.youtube.com/c/AverySmithDataCareerJumpstart
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