New Data Analytics Certificate

Analyzing raw data to formulate informed decisions is essential for business success

Inver Hills Community College is offering a new Data Analytics certificate for fall semester 2023. The 23–24 credit certificate is focused on computer science, computer programming, statistics, and advanced business analytic applications, including predictive analytics. Coursework is designed to give you exactly the training you need to pursue career opportunities in data analytics.

Business faculty perspective: Don Cassidy

If you had one year to study anything, what would it be?

“That’s easy,” said Don Cassidy, Inver Hills business faculty. “Data analytics—and I’ve been lucky enough to do just that during my sabbatical.”

Don Cassidy

A key deliverable of Don’s sabbatical is the new Data Analytics certificate.

“It’s a follow-up certificate to the Business Analytics certificate we created a few years ago,” Don reported. “The Business Analytics certificate has been very popular, but through our research we knew there was another segment of folks seeking data analytic career opportunities that require some computer science coursework and advanced business analytic application knowledge, including predictive analytics. Much of what I’ve studied over the past year has been focused on predictive analytics utilizing Alteryx software.”

Alteryx is an American computer software company focused on data science and analytics. Alteryx software is designed to make advanced analytics accessible to any data worker.

Don explained that the college is partnering with Alteryx to give Inver Hills students access to a free Alteryx license that allows them to pursue Alteryx certification—a journey Don has experienced firsthand.

“To bring credibility to my teaching, I knew I needed to become Alteryx Core certified, which I was able to do,” Don pointed out. “It wasn’t easy, and I had to remind myself what I often tell my students, ‘What can seem daunting one week is often old hat the next. Put one foot in front of the other and enjoy the ride.'”

More about the new Data Analytics certificate

Set to launch fall semester 2023, the new Data Analytics certificate is not only the result of Don’s work during his sabbatical, but also represents a collaboration between academic and industry experts.

“This certificate has benefited from many voices,” Don said, “especially from Christopher Metsgar, Inver Hills dean of business, healthcare, and public service, and Troy Mincer, senior business systems analyst at Entrust and a longtime member of the Inver Hills Business Department Advisory Board.”

Troy Mincer emphasized that in today’s dynamic business environment data analytics has become more important than ever.

“Businesses require visualization and understanding of data in real time to make critical decisions,” he said, “and students earning the college’s new Data Analytics certificate will be able to acquire highly marketable skills such as Alteryx, Tableau, and Python. The data analytics space is continuing to grow rapidly, and gaining these competitive skills will allow students to hit the ground running in this exciting industry.”

Infographic courtesy of Alteryx

Data Analytics Certificate Core Curriculum

CS 1101 Introduction to Computer Science and Problem Solving (3 credits) OR
CS 1110 Computer Programming with Java (4 credits)

CS 1117 Computer Programming with Python (4 credits)
MATH 1103 Introduction to Statistics (4 credits)
BUS 1100 Introduction to Business Applications and Computing (4 credits)
BUS 2400 Business Analytics I (4 credits)
BUS 2450 Business Analytics II (4 credits)

Learn more about the new Data Analytics certificate by contacting:

Inver Hills Community College
Virtual Visit

Operations Research Analysts

Help managers make decisions about organizational policies.

Typical work tasks on the job:
  • Troubleshoot issues with computer applications or systems.
  • Analyze data to identify or resolve operational problems.
  • Analyze data to identify trends or relationships among variables.
  • Analyze project data to determine specifications or requirements.

This career pays well above the statewide median of $23.81/hour


Median: $39.96/hour
High: $50.95/hour

Seven-county Twin Cities metro

Median: $40.02/hour
High: $50.88/hour


In Minnesota, there are 2,230 workers employed in this small career, which is currently seeing very high growth compared to other careers. Growth rate is 24.3 percent, or well above the statewide average.

There will be a need for about 3,019 new Operations Research Analysts to meet market demand between 2020–2030. This includes the demand due to replacement (workers leaving the occupation or retiring) as well as growth.

SOURCE: Minnesota State CAREERwise Education (March 8, 2023)

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