Alumni Spotlight

How Mauro Became a Data Scientist at Lighthouse Labs

Jess Feldman

Written By Jess Feldman

Liz Eggleston

Edited By Liz Eggleston

Last updated on September 28, 2023

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When Mauro De Moraes returned to Canada, he was ready to make a career pivot into tech. Mauro already had some experience in Excel, so he decided to commit to the full-time, online Data Science Bootcamp at Lighthouse Labs. He landed a machine learning internship and is now a Data Analyst at Rogers Communications! Mauro shares how his bootcamp experience continues to drive his career forward in 2023. 

What inspired you to pivot from business development to data?

I returned to Canada in 2018 looking for work. I tried my hand as a server and a sales consultant, but decided to pivot to a new career. After much searching, I found data science! I had never worked in data science before, but I had some experience with Excel spreadsheets and analyzing data. A college course in Calgary introduced me to the basics of data analytics and a friend introduced me to bootcamps, so I started looking into data bootcamps until I found Lighthouse Labs. 

There are so many data science bootcamps — What sets Lighthouse Labs apart from the rest?

I read a lot of great reviews online, but one of the main reasons I initially chose Lighthouse Labs was because there was a campus in Calgary. Even though our cohort was held fully online, I liked knowing that Lighthouse Labs had some ties to the local area. 

Why did you choose the Data Science bootcamp instead of the Data Analytics course?

I wanted to go deeper into data skills with the actual bootcamp rather than completing a short course. When I compared the outcomes, data science was a better choice for me. 

What was the bootcamp application process like for you? 

A little bit of basic coding knowledge was required to get into Lighthouse Labs, but not much. The interview was pretty tough — it’s competitive to get in!

Did you have to complete any pre-work before the bootcamp started?

There was a pre-course that helped a lot to prepare for the bootcamp. During my pre-course, I learned a lot about Python code language, and its resources. It also covered some probability and Statistic basics.

Did you quit your job to do this bootcamp or did you juggle work and study?

At the time I attended Lighthouse Labs, it seemed impossible to work and study. I didn’t like being unemployed, but I had to be in order to focus on the bootcamp. 

What was a typical day like in the Data Science bootcamp? 

I was in front of my computer from 8:30am to midnight or 1am! It was one of the hardest things I have done in my life — I was an emotional rollercoaster that went from crying to yelling to happiness. It was a really tough experience, like doing a full-time job while full-time studying.

It was a tough three months of my life, but I don't regret any minute. Lighthouse Labs was 100% worth it – the bootcamp really helped me. I wanted to change my career, and I couldn't have done it without Lighthouse Labs.

What did you learn in the Data Science Bootcamp?

I learned a lot there. Python was the main one that we used for everything, plus SQL Server, which I still use today! I also learned a lot about predictions and artificial intelligence for data.

Has the machine learning that you covered at Lighthouse Labs prepared you for using AI for your current roles?

Even though I don’t use AI on the job in my current role, I used it all the time in a three-month internship before this job, using a natural language process to analyze news on the internet. The company I interned for wanted to know how communities talked about them, so we used AI to analyze what the internet and social media news said about the company, then created a dashboard to report the findings. 

What kinds of projects did you work on at Lighthouse Labs?

One project I made at Lighthouse Labs was to create a dashboard that predicted soccer game results. You put the teams that were playing and the date, and it populates the chance of each team winning. 

What were your instructors like at the bootcamp?

Instructors at Lighthouse Labs were great — very friendly and approachable. No matter what time we called them, they were always in a good mood and willing to help. I wouldn’t have been able to finish this program without the support of the instructors and the peace of mind they assured me.

Since this was an online bootcamp, did you feel connected to your cohort?

Yes! I’m still friends with many of them to this day. Most of my cohort were career changers. 

How did Lighthouse Labs prepare you for the job hunt? 

Career services at Lighthouse Labs include practical and technical mock interviews throughout the whole three months. After I graduated, I had an interview booked, so I reached out to Lighthouse Labs and they did a mock interview with me. There is also a dedicated Slack channel for career services. 

Which data roles did you feel qualified to apply for after graduating?

After graduating from Lighthouse Labs, I felt qualified to apply for entry/mid-level jobs in data analytics, data science, and machine learning development. 

What was your first data role that you landed after graduating from Lighthouse Labs? 

My first role after graduating from Lighthouse Labs was a three-month internship at AltaML as a machine learning developer. Even though I was working alongside coders that learned from a university, I still felt equal in our knowledge. Three months after I finished the internship, I landed a data analyst job in the marketing department at Rogers Communications, and felt very qualified and confident. 

Do you recommend that other bootcamp students consider internships after they graduate?

I encourage people to apply for both! It’s good to have a stable, full-time job, but the internship helped me understand the world of data science. 

Were employers interested in your bootcamp experience and/or project portfolio? 

Yes! Employers were interested in my bootcamp experience and wanted to know more, maybe because AI wasn’t as popular two years ago and they were curious about machine learning

Since you’ve worked as a data scientist and a data analyst, what are the differences between both those roles? Why did you shift from working in data science to working in data analysis?

I took the first job I landed because I needed the money. As a data analyst, you don't need to do prediction or work much on the data because there’s a data science team to work on and prepare the data. I just report my findings. A data scientist needs to understand how to work the data, like find more fields, and information to add into the machine learning so they can help make predictions. 

Over the course of your data career, have you used what you learned at Lighthouse Labs on the job?

I use what I learned at Lighthouse Labs on the job every single day, for analyzing and understanding data and understanding problems that arise. I use SQL as a main tool to connect to my database and I also learned how to use dashboards.

Are you using any soft skills or any skills that you had in your previous career now in your role at Rogers?

Absolutely — communication is a big one!

Is there anything you wish you knew before starting the Data Science Bootcamp at Lighthouse Labs?

The first month is the hardest. There were days I cried because it was so hard to manage. If I knew what it would be like ahead of time, I would have been more prepared by learning to code in Python as much as possible. 

Find out more and read Lighthouse Labs reviews on Course Report. This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with Lighthouse Labs.

About The Author

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman is an accomplished writer and the Content Manager at Course Report, the leading platform for career changers who are exploring coding bootcamps. With a background in writing, teaching, and social media management, Jess plays a pivotal role in helping Course Report readers make informed decisions about their educational journey.

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