Chaminade University of Honolulu announced this week that the school will be partnering with universities in Texas and Georgia for a two-year pilot program that will look to expose more Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander students to careers in data science, visualization, and analytics.

Dubbed the Supporting Pacific Indigenous Computing Excellence, or SPICE, program, the launch is a result of a $300,000 award via the National Science Foundation and its INCLUDES (Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science) initiative.

Chaminade University will partner with the Texas Advanced Computing Center at The University of Texas at Austin and the Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics & Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology for the SPICE program. The ultimate goal of the program is to supply Hawaii with more future-forward graduates, with studies in "big data" playing a large part moving forward.

“The vision of SPICE is training a cadre of students who will lead data science, visualization and analytics efforts that support health, sustainability and social justice in Hawaii and elsewhere in the Pacific,” said Dr. Helen Turner, SPICE's co-principal investigator, Chaminade’s dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and vice president for Innovation, per a statement. “Solutions to many critical regional problems lie in ‘big data.' It’s key that Hawaii’s future science, technology and business leaders are prepared to use data science in their careers and advocacy."

“These skills are needed by Hawaii’s future workforce across diverse sectors,” stated Chaminade president Dr. Lynn Babington, “including business, science, health care and environmental protection. This is the gap Chaminade will address.”

Notably, big data skills have shown to be an increasing need in the accounting landscape, with a particular demand among internal auditors.

Protiviti Internal Audit Data Analytics Survey Findings

For more on SPICE and Chaminade, head to the university's site here.

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