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International Women’s Day – Janine Böckmann

Women in Big Data is spotlighting amazing women.

Working for a German mid-sized company which is specialized in strategic and end-to-end BI consulting, Janine Böckmann shares how being part of the Data Analytics team has given her the opportunity to work together with her team on client’s requirements and support her customer with how to get the best out of their data and how to optimally visualize their data.

I did not learn the profession I am currently pursuing during my studies; what I studied was initially intended as a stopgap solution, and the direction of my stopgap solution had also changed during the studies. The plans I made after leaving school, therefore, never came to fruition the way they were supposed to.

When I graduated from school, I did not know what to do for a living. I was interested in geography and sports and found subjects like economics or maths boring as hell. So I went to New Zealand for six months to find out what I actually wanted to do professionally, but regarding my professional interests I was not any the wiser when I got back.

Back in Germany, I applied to study Geography, but I was not accepted. Without knowing what was in store for me in terms of content, without having had physics up to school-leaving level, and without being interested in maths, I enrolled for ‘Geophysics and Meteorology’ at the university of Cologne, with the goal of becoming a meteorologist.

My career journey into data hasn’t been, by any means, something traditional. At the end of my studies, I had completed both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in applied geophysics. I only took one course in meteorology, and that was only because it was compulsory. There were ups and downs during my studies. I was only one math exam away from having to give up my studies. But I was also able to take exciting and varied measurement campaigns through applied geophysics.

Happy with a good master’s degree in my pocket, I started looking for a job, and of course I wanted to be able to put what I had learned into practice and gain a lot of work experience. But I quickly had to say goodbye to this idea as well. Instead, I started at my current job. The fact that I had already dealt with data validation, data evaluation, and data visualization in my studies finally encouraged me to take this step into a world that, though it had previously been completely foreign to me, gave me a certain amount of security.

I am happy that I can also be satisfied and successful in my new career field. And thankful that my study path has not only enabled me to take this one path, but that I have now realized for myself that much more is possible and that nothing comes as it was planned, but that it brings me personally much more effectively forward. I am excited about which professional paths I will still take and am open and curious about everything that is still to come.

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