How to Use Your Unique Gift and Perspective | Deborah Berebichez, PhD


June 15th, 2020

1 hr 6 mins 50 secs

Season 2

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About this Episode

On this episode of The Artists of Data Science, we get a chance to hear from Deborah Berebichez, a physicist, data scientist, and TV host. Her passion for learning and teaching has led her to become a voice for women and minorities in STEM.

She gives insight into how she broke into the data science field, how to cultivate the right mindset to succeed, and the importance of diversity and inclusion in tech.

Deborah shares with us how she grew up in a conservative environment, and the obstacles that she had to overcome to become the first Mexican woman to graduate with a physics PhD from Stanford University.


[17:11] What value Deborah believes data science will bring within the next few years

[20:43] Deborah's role model for being curious and inquisitive

[27:42] Actionable tips for cultivating the habit of critical thinking

[40:07] Advice on how to be the hero when you feel like a failure

[51:47] Advice for women that want to break into tech

[19:57] "…I think the most amazing things that are going to happen [due to data science] are giving transparency to industries and to communities of people that otherwise in the past have remained quite invisible"

[24:19] "I am a very strong supporter of making people learn and educat[ing] others in the basics of science so that we can become empowered citizens and know more about the world."

[24:50] "…Critical thinking to me is about questioning authority…[it] allows us to to gain the proficiency in being able to discard lies from the truth."

[28:12] "…Make sure that you recognized the biases that you have about the world and what you want to be truth so that you don't blind yourself to the actual results of a data analysis"

[40:59] "…The people who end up succeeding in life are not the ones for whom things come easily. They are the ones for for whom obstacles are just something to transcend and the ones that get up every time that they experience a failure in their lives and they keep going."






[00:03:44] The path into data science

[00:07:59] Dr. Berebichez talks about how she got involved with Metis and the work she's doing there.

[00:09:36] What data science will look like in 2-5 years

[00:11:05] The need for different skillsets in data science, from translators to engineers.

[00:12:12] How to be a great data scientist

[00:14:30] What do you think would be the scariest application or the scariest abuse or misuse of data science machine learning in the next two to five years?

[00:16:46] What ways do you think Data science will have the biggest positive impact on society in the next two to five years?

[00:20:34] Dr. Berebichez talks about a historical figure that means a lot to her: Tycho Brahe

[00:24:38] Critical thinking and the data scientist

[00:27:33] Actionable tips to become a better critical thinker

[00:29:33] Why are humans so bad at appreciating or conceptualizing probabilities?

[00:31:09] Why is it important that we cultivate this intuition for what probability represents?

[00:33:53] Is data science an art or science?

[00:36:16] How does the creative process tend to manifest itself in Data science?

[00:38:00] For people out there who are trying to break into data science and maybe they feel like they don't belong or they don't know enough or they aren't smart enough. Do you have any words of encouragement for them?

[00:39:54] So in those moments where we feel like we're failing or failures, we want to give up because it's hard upskilling and learning so much to get into Data science. What can we do to feel like a hero?

[00:41:48] Breaking into data science when you're coming from a non-technical background

[00:44:06] What would you say would be like the biggest myth that people tend to hold in their heads about breaking into Data science? And would you mind debunking that for us?

[00:45:49] The story of Rupesh

[00:49:59] The importance of progress over perfection

[00:51:32] Debbie shares her experience being a woman in tech and provides the women in our audience some advice and encouragement.

[00:53:30] What could the Data community and men in the Data community do to foster inclusion of women in Data science and AI?

[00:55:39] What's the one thing you want people to learn from your story?

[00:56:24] The lightning round

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