College of Arts & Science at Miami University
"Work Your Hardest in Whatever You Do"
(with Bryan Bell, February 2013)
A full text transcript of the video is available below.
(Mr. Bryan Bell earned his M.S. in statistics from Miami in 2004. He is now Managing Director, Target Enrollment Group, LLC, in Indianapolis, IN. In this video Bryan talks about how he came to Miami and how his degree provided him with the foundation and work ethic needed to launch a successful business.)
"I chose Miami to pursue my studies through an internship I had taken. I did my undergraduate work at Franklin College in pure mathematics, and through the recommendation of a professor I took an internship in statistical research and had provided a lot of research studies utilizing statistics to this farm in northern Indiana, and as a result, realized I did have a passion for statistics and wanted to continue my studies in it. My professor at the time was an alumnus of Miami University and he recommended looking into the program here; and that's when I made my decision to enroll, and to try to accomplish a masters in statistics.
"So, I got interested in the course of work in statistics by really pursuing my interest in mathematics, which turned into an internship that led me to statistics. There is a distinction between the two. I felt with mathematics that I was going to be a math teacher; I wasn't quite sure what I would do outside of that, but with the introduction to statistics I realized an application within the business world. And as a result I really developed a passion knowing that there was a lot of opportunity out within marketing professions, within IT, within pharmaceutical studies that allowed me to apply statistics, and that really led me to my involvement with Miami and understanding that I really wanted to accomplish the masters in statistics.
"There were several professors at Miami that definitely had an impact on my studies here. Being in the graduate school it was a small department and it was very close-knit with respect to the studies and the mentorship with the professors. I recall the first class on campus was an introduction to probability that Dr. William Murphy had taught. And I realized quickly how tough the program would be and it really set me on the path to know I had to study very hard to accomplish what I wanted to accomplish. And from Dr. Bailer to Dr. Dunn and Dr. Groggel, many of them were very willing to help me along the way and help me understand their courses, and also help and assist with my understanding of what I could do with my degree once I accomplished it.
"Miami prepared me for what I am doing now by instilling an extremely hard work ethic with the difficulty of the program, and understanding that I needed to study hard to obtain the masters that I wanted to achieve. And knowing that’s applicable in real life, you need to set out to work your hardest in whatever you set out to do. And that prepared me, along with just the foundation of my understanding of statistics and its application into the real world.
"The most rewarding and exciting aspect of my work is the opportunity to work closely with individuals in admissions offices. I know that there is many a times where they're struggling to understand their data and I have the opportunity to dig into that data for them, to extract useful information so they can utilize it to make decisions with that information, and being able to interpret that information in an actionable way for them, and to help them comprehend what their data is saying is very rewarding.
"My advice for students as they are entering into the potential statistics degree or masters would be to take an internship, without a doubt. It's the quickest way to understand if you have a passion for what you think you want to enter into. I think it is also a great way to develop leadership skills early on, and to understand where you might want to apply your practice of statistics.
"Ten years from now when you update my profile I would expect to be continuing to grow my business, Target Enrollment Group, to continue to add to my team of statisticians, and to expand the client base that I have currently within higher education.
"My inspiration for starting a company like Target Enrollment was just my desire to take statistics to industries where I feel it's underutilized. Coming from a large company, where a lot of emphasis is put on statistical learning and data analysis for making decisions within the company, I felt that there was an opportunity within higher education to help provide that support that’s not commonly available within recruiting and retention in higher education."