Sorry, I think being a real 'data scientist' has very little to do with holding a post-graduate degree. It has to do with innate, intuitive, instinctive, empathetic understanding of data and relationships and how they interact. And also the same understanding of people and how they will and should interact with such data. I don't think this necessarily is taught or is inherent in obtaining a degree.
I'll give an example I've witnessed lately: Our city had a very efficient 4-lane street with maybe eight stoplights between downtown and the airport maybe 4 or 5 miles apart. This street had worked very well for decades as it was. It served a considerable amount of traffic including busses and trucks.
This summer they began a project to 'improve' this thoroughfare. First, they took space for on-street parking on both sides of the street. Then they added bicycle lanes on alternating sides of the street although I've never seen anyone risk their lives on a bicycle. Then they added a center turn lane all the way through the route.
Now the street is single lanes each way and very congested due to the heavy usage of four lanes combined into the two. It gets really bad when school busses stop all traffic for pick up and drop off, city busses have to cross the bicycle lanes to do the same. You almost never see anyone actually parking in the new parking lanes, because the neighborhood is nearly 100% residential with driveways and small businesses with parking lots of their own.
I'm fairly sure the city has traffic engineers with advanced degrees analyzing data and designing these projects and spending this money with disastrous results because they have all the training and theory down pat but lack the understanding and empathy for the way things will really work.
Over my career I saw many computer systems designed exactly this way too. Absolutely no understanding of how the user understood and worked with their data. I even worked for one company whose owner and president dictated that there should be absolutely NO constraints on technical and engineering folks being allowed to enter any data they desired, valid or invalid, from which the computer was expected to produce designs for blueprints. You should have seen the results of drawings that wandered all over town.
Data Scientist? My take is that it's maybe 10% degrees and 90% innate understanding and ability and empathy.
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