Shandong University, BS Logistics Engineering, 2009
University of Michigan, MS Industrial & Operations Engineering, 2013
I am a Data Engineer at Meta. I am the analytical go-to person in a cross-functional team with engineers, business, policy etc. Our team is targeting at protecting our products from un-intended or abusive behavior, actors, or content. Before this job, I have worked on data analytics and modeling in the purchasing, logistics, and supply chain areas at GM for 7 years. I was promoted from researcher to senior researcher to data science & analytics lead. I developed myself in 3 aspects through projects: technical know-how on building data pipelines and models; business know-how on how to bridge the gap between IT, Business, Modeling; project management such as managing people without authority. I also built a reputation and became the technical go-to person regarding complex issues over time. For example, when GM sponsored the 2019 INFORMS student competition, I convinced the leadership to choose the topic I was most excited about: analyzing future vehicle delivery networks with autonomous vehicles. I got to define, collect data, analyze, and coach students on the existing problem. I learned a lot while judging alongside selected top university professors and industry executives.
How does your Master’s degree differentiate you from others?
The master’s degree from UM IOE provided me with a lot of possibilities. On my side, I also tried to utilize it to the most. Firstly, I took the Ph.D. level Operations Research courses such as Integer Programming, Linear Programming, Stochastic Process I, 2, and Queue Theory. Secondly, I was a research assistant with Professor Cong Shi on applying the Approximation Dynamic Programming policy in the Revenue Management area. Thirdly, in the simulation course, with the guidance of Professor Luiz Guzman, I read papers and technically lead our final project to win the first prize of the national ProModel simulation competition. Finally, I networked and learned from my fellow classmates through participating and organizing the department events, working as the department peer advisor.
Reflection on Time Spent at U-M
Figure out what you want and focus on it. If you are interested in the Data Science jobs, the master level courses in operations research, simulation, statistics together with a programming course would help a lot. You could leverage free UM Coursera courses and specialize during the winter/summer break and after graduation. Last but not least, you will meet a lot of smart people in your program, make friends, and keep in touch!