Climate Change inspire winners of Qlik Academic Program’s Datathon Challenge
Recently, winners of the Qlik and C40 Climate Leadership Group Academic Program Datathon were announced. Students from all around the world leveraged Qlik analytics software and public data to build solutions to help solve some of the issues at the heart of our current climate crisis in multiple geographies.
Among the winners of this challenge was “Team Young Hustlers” comprising of Sri Teja Makam and Vinay Kandula, final year Bachelors in Technology students from Vidya Jyothi Institute of Technology (VJIT) Hyderabad, India
Both their stories are inspiring and reveal their passion for climate change and analytics.
Vinay Kandula hails from an agricultural background and was driven by the urge to help farmers improve agricultural practices. He embarked upon his own research and his findings revealed that poor rainfall and rising temperatures are one of the leading causes for a drop in crop production. He felt that a solution which could track these changes and help minimize this damage could be of great help to farmers. It was this context that led him and his team member Sri Teja Makam to participate in the Qlik Datathon Challenge and choose a challenge to develop a tool to measure and track the progress of increased (or decreased) risk reduction to climate change hazards
Prior to the Qlik Academic Program being introduced at VJIT, Vinay had no idea that data analytics could be done without coding. Within the program, he chose the Business Analyst pathway which helped him understand data analytics and build visualizations using dimensions, measures and charts. Vinay says, “Two years of learning through the resources of the Qlik Academic Program has only increased my eagerness to explore more about the technology. It was this enthusiasm that led to my first project in Qlik Sense using connectors and IOT”
When he heard about the Datathon, he teamed up with Sri Teja Makam and registered immediately without a second thought. His concern for agriculture being impacted by climate change was an inspiration to build an app which could help solve issues due to climatic hazards. Both of them are pursuing an internship so it was a challenge to balance time. But careful planning and execution made them manage both successfully. As they progressed, it was a different learning experience and eventually, while some last-minute changes to the app went a little off the plan, they were able to upload the project and meet the deadline.
Vinay says, “Data Analytics is one of the booming technologies and there are various other technologies like Data Science, Machine Learning and Deep Learning which are important. My aim is to complete Data Science as it would lead a way to a successful career.”
Professor Siddhartha Ghosh who was one of the mentors for this team was delighted to have students from VJIT achieve this landmark and says, “this win gave us the confidence that nothing is impossible!”
The second team member of “Team Young Hustlers”, Sri Teja Makam is also studying in her final year of Engineering pursuing Bachelors in Technology in Computer Science from VJIT.
Sri Teja’s interest in climate change began a couple of years ago when she visited Delhi for a holiday during the summer month of May. During this time, she experienced extreme heat conditions in Delhi and upon further research, she discovered that rainfall is also not normal in the region. This inspired Sri Teja to learn more about climate hazards caused due to climate change.
While studying at VJIT, the Qlik Academic Program was introduced in September 2018. She along with her classmates decided to pursue the Business Analyst pathway. As her learning progressed, it led to more enthusiasm due to the structure and contents of the program. In particular, she was fascinated about the product features such as building apps, loading data, writing the script, creating various visualizations using charts, interlinking the datasets, taking snapshots and creating stories. She was also excited by the experience of learning seamlessly without coding.
In her words, “Qlik has brought a whole new perspective to data analytics. The Qlik Academic Program fueled our passion in data analytics which also enabled us to undertake a couple of projects using Qlik Sense”
The Qlik Academic Program Datathon came as a blessing because that gave Sri Teja the opportunity to participate in a challenge towards her concern for climate change and also test her skills she’s learnt so far, in a global challenge. Being an intern, it was important to manage time but by dividing tasks between her and Vinay made this endeavor easier. Last minute changes did make it challenging but they were able to submit the presentation and meet the deadline. In Sri Teja’s words, “Alone we can do so little and together we can do so much”
Sri Teja further says, “The more I know about Data Analytics, the more challenging it becomes which in turn enthusiasts like me to explore various datasets and find a solution to real-world problems. Today’s world is using data analytics for easy visualization and I believe this knowledge would pave the path for greater success in my career”
Professor Neha Kandula who also mentored this team feels that the Qlik and C40 Climate Leadership Group Academic Program Datathon is one of the best kind of challenges she’s seen in her academic career and this also gave students a chance to work on data which is relevant to the present situation.
To learn more about the Qlik Academic Program and explore free resources for students and Professors, visit: qlik.com/academicprogram