MSc Responsible Data Science Scholar: Doris Woo

Our MSc Responsible Data Science scholar Doris Woo gives us the low-down on taking every day at a time whilst studying a legal and technological goldmine.

Doris Woo Square

Responsible Data Science is a relatively new and developing field of study, what attracted you to apply to this programme? 

Having studied computer science for my undergraduate degree long before I went into law, it was mainly the direct application of a data-driven discipline with law that attracted me to this programme, and it was mainly luck that I read about the course and the scholarship early this year to apply.

How will the scholarship help you? 

Not only will it ease the financial pressures of not being able to work full-time while studying, the scholarship was a much-needed confidence boost for making a career change towards a more tech-focused, interdisciplinary and collaborative discipline while harnessing the experience I gained as a data protection lawyer.

How have you found the Maths Bootcamp? Do you feel more confident now about maths than before?

Although it took over my life for 3 weeks and made me think of maths every waking minute, I was thankful for the opportunity to refamailiarise myself with long-forgotten formulae in calculus, linear algebra and probability. Having already been aware about the need to understand these branches of maths in Data Science, it’s one huge aspect I’ll be less worried about while doing the course. With the help of the maths bootcamp instructors and their exam comments, I now have a decent set of notes from the maths bootcamp and I feel like I have a better chance of understanding important concepts in Data Science like optimisation. Case in point: the calculus and linear algebra stuff is already cropping up in the second week of lectures.

Is there a particular module you are looking forward to studying? Do you plan to join in on any employability events and societies?

All of them, because each module will cross over and inform the other modules. What I’m most interested in is how the technical skills learned in the first semester will cross over into the law modules in the second semester. I’ve joined the tennis team and meditation society, and combined with my other commitments outside of uni that’s probably my limit.

What do you plan to do in the future once you graduate? Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years thanks to the programme?

After I graduate, I have more freedom to choose a less traditional and more satisfying career path, either within the legal services sector or otherwise. I think it’s a fool’s game to already think about 5 years from now; while I have goals and aspirations immediately after finishing Responsible Data Science, I am realistically aiming to survive one month at a time.

Is there any advice you would give someone considering applying to the MSc Responsible Data Science degree?

With the legal sector sitting on tons of data that only the bigger and more techy law firms have explored with data science and analytics as part of their business strategy, it’s an exciting time to get involved in data science in this interdisciplinary way while it’s still relatively niche. However, if you apply as a career changer, be ready to substantially change your lifestyle to properly commit to this course—it’s not for the faint of heart and I’m writing this after only finishing the first week.