data science

Student Spotlight: Etienne – Data Science Bootcamp Student

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43-year-old Etienne Bauscher, who comes from Cape Town, has done a wide variety of different occupations including releasing his own debut gospel album, which he engineered himself. Before that, he worked as a Procurement Engineer in the mining industry at Group Five, a Structural Steel Draughtsman and he also owned his own Corporate and Promotional Clothing and Gifts business. So what made Etienne decide to sign up for a HyperionDev online Bootcamp in data science, and how can you know if it’s the right time for you to make a significant career change?

According to Entrepreneur, people are likely to change careers five to seven times during their working life. Here are five signs that it might be time for you to switch careers:

  1. Your company is driving you crazy – for example, perhaps you’re not being used to your full potential or there is no room for any more company growth.
  2. Automation is likely to hit certain industries hard. Check out this useful guide to assess the likelihood of your job being automated.
  3. Automation aside, a global economic downturn is predicted for 2020, and that could hit certain industries harder than others. The good news is that software developer jobs are predicted to grow by 17% from 2014 to 2024, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is much faster than the average for other occupations, which is at 7%.
  4. There’s a poor match between your talents and the job you’re doing – for example, you’re a high school teacher who doesn’t enjoy high-intensity social interactions.
  5. According to Business Insider, here are some good reasons for not switching career:
  • It’s the end of the year. This has to do with hiring logistics.  A lot of people who make hiring decisions are away and you’ll need to be more patient waiting for job interviews and callbacks.
  • It’s right before a monumental change like pregnancy or marriage.
  • You’re over or under worked – this might not be a sufficient reason. Rather analyse how you’re managing your time, and then plead your case to the boss.

So what were Etienne’s reasons for changing careers. Ultimately, he wanted to do something “more in demand”. He says:


I love coding and machine learning. The concepts behind data science also interest me greatly.

He mentions a number of other key reasons for his monumental mid-forties career shift including the desire to work remotely and travel – he loves the idea of being able to work from wherever he wants. In addition, there are likely to be good data science work opportunities worldwide. When not travelling or working remotely, Etienne is also keen to do stimulating and meaningful work, perhaps at an NGO or in his community. Says Etienne:


I want to contribute to the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

It’s worth noting that Etienne doesn’t mention an improved salary as one of his motivators for his career change, but guess the best job in the US for the past few years running? It’s data science, according to Glassdoor, which combines three factors to work out its top-job rankings: number of job openings, salary and overall job satisfaction rating. The average salary for a data scientist in the US, according to PayScale, is $91,035.

Etienne, who has recently graduated, enjoyed his Data Science Bootcamp greatly. He says:


I got to engage with a wide variety of concepts. In data science, there are multiple approaches to different problems. It’s very stimulating to find the right one to suit the objective which needs to be achieved.

And what advice does he have for people wishing to enter this stimulating career?


Start somewhere and let the road lead you onwards. At first, you might find yourself jumping around a lot, but you will find stability in the process. Don’t quit. Also, you need to define your goal – is it web development or data science, for example? Then learn how to code for that particular aspect of tech. I received excellent advice from someone working in blockchain technology. She said, ‘If you want to learn how to code, join a bootcamp.’ Previously, I tried to learn so many languages all at once and I almost lost my mind. To summarise: decide what tech you want to get involved in, and then learn how to code! It’s that simple.

Not only is Etienne excited about his future, he is also upbeat about the future of programming. He puts it like this:


Technology is forever changing and evolving. Future technologies are now being made available on simulation platforms which I believe is great for preparing developers for the changes to come.

If you’re keen to change career or you just want to enter the in-demand field of tech (no previous experience necessary), HyperionDev offers online bootcamps in Full Stack Web Development, Data Science or Software Engineering. You can also trial one of these courses for free. If online learning is not your thing, you could join a face-to-face Web Developer or Software Engineering course in Cape Town or Johannesburg. Start your career change today.