Sarah Riecke: Leadership and community engagement

Sarah, a management information systems major, is founder of the Big Data Club at UMassD

Tell us about a great experience or opportunity you've had here at UMass Dartmouth.

I have many great experiences and opportunities. I go to Board Game Night every Thursday hosted by the library. I attend two clubs now, Big Data Club and Fishbowl. I am a teacher’s aid and tutor for four sections of MIS 101. I am a Charlton College of Business student ambassador. I volunteer with ROC for fall move-in days. These experiences and opportunities have made my time here at UMass Dartmouth great, and I encourage everyone to get involved on campus.

What advice do you have for incoming students?

Be yourself, push yourself, and challenge yourself. Challenge yourself by taking difficult courses, or trying something new and complicated. Challenging yourself opens you up to growth opportunities.

Who's your favorite professor and why?

Over the years, there’s been a lot of good professors. Each and every one has taught be something new and different. The best professors are the ones that encourage and challenge me, make class interesting, and push me to be the best that I can be.

Professor Dan Braha makes classes interesting and is more than willing to help outside of class. Professor BK Rai challenged me by inviting me to Data Fest in April 2017. Professor Rui Huang is the professor that introduced me to MIS, and for that I’m thankful. She challenged me in my first every MIS class. Without that class with her, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

There’s many other great professors at this university, not just in business. I would like to thank every one of them for helping me through my journey here at UMass Dartmouth.

Disucss being the founder of the Big Data Club at UMassD and the club’s mission and goals.

Being the founder of the Big Data Club has been the journey. Up until finding this club, I wasn’t active in any other clubs. I had no idea what I was doing or what being a founder or president of a club would be like. I stepped out of my comfort zone and did something new.

The Big Data Club was founded after attending Data Fest in April 2017. I knew that there were people here on campus interested in analyzing data or dealing with data in general. But there was no common ground for them to meet. I decided to create that place. The Big Data Club is a place for people to meet on the common interest of data, share their ideas and projects, ask for help, bounce ideas off each other, and so on.


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