Feedback from Participants

Kyrgyzstan - Big Data

"Thank you for coming to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and sharing your knowledge, enthusiasm and energy with us. Your 'instructional odyssey' so much restores the value and the preciousness of teaching & learning, of that very process. Thank you for being an inspiration for me as a teacher. And from me as a student, thank you for breaking my fears and barriers, particularly towards SQL. You are a wonderful, sharing and empowering professor. All the best!"

Kyrgyzstan - Big Data

"The topic of the workshop was totally new to me and thus the whole thing was extremely helpful. I can see myself using some of the tricks we learned about network analysis and machine learning in my near future research projects. I am interested in learning more about data analysis and getting more comfortable in using the different available tools like Instabase and Tableau."

Kazakhstan - Big Data

"Professor Widom wonderfully explained about Big data, even for me, the person who is not very good at programming, it was easy to follow her instructions to program on Python. Her courses are organized so that you will be introduced with introduction to topics and then implementing the theory on practice by programming. I am so glad I visited her classes, as now I am more aware of what I am expected to do in my future job. Her classes made clarify what big data is about, because it is quite a huge sphere. And her classes covered all directions of Big data: sql, python, machine learning, deep learning and etc. I also liked her comparison between techniques on analyzing data, benefits and drawbacks of them, when better implement one method over another. Professor Widom gives so many examples, that you leave her classes with quite big package of knowledge about Big data. And starting with topics, that seemed to be easy, to quite complex topics. So her classes are not only for those who is new in Big data, but also for experienced people. I am so glad that I was a part of her big journey to bringing the light about explaining Big data to countries that are not so familiar with this new extremely growing sphere."

Kazakhstan - Design Thinking and Women-in-Tech

"The workshop "Design thinking" has completely different format. The atmosphere on workshop is so funny and friendly. I understood many interesting things on how to generate ideas and find solutions for them. The workshop "Women in technology" is also worth visiting, as many women are facing issues working in the technology sphere, that is mostly occupied by men. It was very useful to hear her experience about her life, how she managed to balance her family and work life."

Bosnia & Herzegovina - Big Data

"It was real pleasure to attend Big Data course taught by Professor Widom. Material and instruction were great and very easy to follow. This course will provide me strong foundation to go further in my IT career. If you have chance to attend this course don’t miss it."

India - Big Data

"Despite the intense 32 hours of class packed in period of 4 days, I really enjoyed this course. It gave me a great overview of what I must focus on if I wish to get into the field of Big Data or Data Science. While I would have preferred an in depth learning of some of the topics covered, I can now say that I have clarity on how exactly I must go about those. This is also the first time I was taught by a woman professor as far as my Computer Science experience is concerned and it was truly a delight so thank you!"

"The instructions were simple and concise.There was a lot of clarity in the explanation. Ideal way to be introduced to something that you don't have a clue about.The little prizes kept students motivated."

"Professor Widom taught SQL in a few hours in a way, probably more cogent than I did in high school in two years. No exaggerations. She was easy-going throughout the course and the curriculum was very interesting. And of course, the prizes were awesome!"

Ghana - Big Data

"It is incredible how much you can learn in such a short amount of time. What I enjoyed was how the Professor knew when to give breaks so that we could replenish ourselves and get our concentration back. The short course reinforced the fact that I want to work in the Data Science and Big Data field."

"As a faculty member, I particularly enjoyed learning from the format of the course - the use of Jupyter and Instabase gave me great ideas for my classes. Although I have some background in machine learning, I actually haven't really done data mining and I liked the explanation of the relationship between the two. I learned something new on every day of the course - from Spreadsheets to the lecture on Correlation versus Causation. Thanks!"

"This one-week course was awesome! I was always interested in delving into Big Data / Data Science but finding just the right course to get my foot in the game was very difficult. This course covers pretty much all the basics needed to delve. Professor Widom is great at explaining concepts; complex stuff that took me hours to understand, I understood within minutes under her teaching. Thanks, Professor Widom for this great 1-week course."

Philippines - Big Data

"It was a well rounded short course. New and upcoming computer majors learn a substantial amount of programming knowledge in a short span of time. Experienced programmers get tips and tricks on how to handle their big data. Everyone gets to learn something from the course."

"Machine learning to me had always looked so imposing and difficult to approach especially when a lot of courses out there present you with a bunch of complicated formulas, but the way Professor Widom presented machine learning was in a way that she focused more on delivering the gist and its purpose to us. She supported us through hands-on exercises and made us realize how powerful machine learning really is and that anyone can do it even in the comfort of their own home. We were able to learn not only about the potential of machine learning in a lot of fields but also how much it actually affects our lives at present. I'm sure that a lot of people were inspired to do machine learning thanks to Professor Widom. At the very least, I definitely was."

"Your socially relevant lectures are a spotlight in a dark room of a world where anti-intellectualism and unbridled conservatism with little respect for technology reigns supreme. Thank you for your odyssey. Please be the hero this world deserves."

Philippines - Design Thinking

"The experience was refreshing and exciting. The practice of just coming up with as many ideas as you can within a limited time prevented me from making preemptive judgment on my thoughts and allowed me to simply think creatively to make use of the time. I found the instructions clear and easy to follow."

Nigeria - Big Data

"It's so wonderful an opportunity to be enlightened on the much sought after data analysis tools. I am really indebted to you and am very grateful for the opportunity to learn all these tools and how to use them in analyzing big data. Thank you VLDB, Thank you ACM, Thank you Professor Widom."

"Special thanks to Professor Widom for traveling all the way from US to enable me to benefit from your wealth of knowledge. I have heard a lot about machine learning, big data analysis and visualization theoretically, but your teaching and instruction has now given me insight into its practical applications. Also, the knowledge I received through the machine learning teaching has already aroused my interest in pursuing machine learning/data science at postgraduate level. Thanks to you, Professor Widom, I will never forget this 'eye opening' workshop."

"It was just the right training I needed in getting headway in my Masters's research work. My skills are enhanced and I now have more confidence in getting my head around my methodology. Thanks prof, the efforts were worth it. And if pre-adventure you were wondering if it's impactful? My answer is YES!"

Mauritius - Big Data

"The explanations, stories, and learning by doing approach took us on a journey, from Big Data being esoteric to it being something that we all can learn, develop and use."

"This 3-days long seminar was intense, fun and rewarding. I got introduced to 2 programming languages. I played with both of them on a couple of challenges. I learned more about Big Data, Machine Learning, Data Mining, Data Analysis, and Visualization. I also discovered cool tools (Tableau, Instabase, Jupyter) that are making my learning easier and more fun. Although it was just at an introductory level, I am more confident about what I can learn by myself to get deeper knowledge in my newly discovered interests."

"It was a fast-paced, interactive learning experience in which I had to take in a lot of new things in a short space of time. It was really uncomfortable and exciting at the same time. My greatest takeaway was that I didn't have to understand everything at that instant but rather discover what I need to start working towards understanding."

Azerbaijan - Big Data and Women-in-Tech

"Prof. Widom is a speaker and teacher any host would dream to get. Precise with guidance and punctual with execution, modest with requests and demanding with quality, she enthusiastically taught the Big Data Weekend short courses and participated as a panelist at the Ada’s Legacy ACM Celebration of Women in Computing within her three-day stay in Azerbaijan. We also were truly amazed by her energy and strength, positive and inspiring personality. Participants, who mostly rated the short courses as excellent, liked the simple hands-on approach for introducing a complex field. Thank you, Prof. Widom, for this fantastic opportunity. It was a great honor and pleasure to host you."

Azerbaijan - Big Data

"I was much impressed about the first day presentation about big data by Prof. Jennifer. Her way of explanation was so clear, fun and joyful that I decided to join also extensive course thereafter next day although I didn't have any intention before. One of the unique and outstanding teaching styles I've ever seen."

"That was awesome lecture by Prof. Widom which I would remember for the rest of my life. Within 3 days I have learned so many new stuff that actually pushed me to continue further with self study."

Poland - Big Data and Women-in-Tech

"I have missed such professional and empirical way of teaching. Professor Widom has met all of my farthest expectations - both educational and personal ones. I felt very comfortable during the whole course - all methods were explained throughout with great amount of detail, but on the other hand, in a very approachable way that even beginners could understand easily. After the big data course I have attended the panel about women in the engineering industry which turned out to be most enlightening for most of the peers. I am very grateful for this great opportunity that Professor Widom has offered me and I hope that many students all around the world are inspired by her words as I am. I would also like to thank her for a nice chat, a glass of wine and a home like warm atmosphere that we shared."

Poland - Big Data

"It was really an excellent experience to see how classes are taught at universities like Stanford. Big thanks to prof. Widom for sacrificing some of her time and the endurance to go on for 9 hours! Greetings from Poland!"

"I am always impressed by the simplicity and clearness of the materials provided by the professors from top universities. Obviously the key to success is to decompose complex concepts into smaller pieces and support them with accurate examples, add to it professionalism and engagement of the speaking person and we'll get a course that is pleasant and understandable by virtually everyone. I am not a newbie to big data and data mining but your lecture with excellent hands-on-experience parts helped me to rearrange things in my head and have a look at everything I've learnt so far with fresh eyes. A big thank you for this, Professor Widom!"

Poland - Design Thinking

"It was a fun and learning experience. Thanks to this intense one day workshop I had a chance to become a strong fan of DT. The whole process simulation backed by great narration and final delivery of prototype was a nice team work experience. Thanks for all inspiration and practical tips. My favorite was a simple team discussion on YES...BUT vs YES...AND. It opened and energized a lot!"

Peru - Big Data

"Prof. Widom's course of Big Data was a great experience. From an undergraduate point of view in my university, Big Data is not something that we look at thoroughly so the course was a great eye opener. Some of the tools used were familiar and others completely new. I now have a better opinion about Google Sheets, it's amazing, and new tools like Instabase are something I'll be using a lot, same goes for Tableau. I don't think there was any impediment for the course, though I wanted more swag!"

Namibia - Big Data

"The big data course was very helpful and very much inspiring especially to me in the context of manipulating data and how to track it. We (most of the undergraduates) also got to learn new stuff and programming languages we are not exposed to, like Python and Tableau."

Namibia - Design Thinking

"The workshop was educative and I have a better understanding of designing for people. Also, it was interesting working in groups, I got to learn from other people and we put all our ideas together for the prototype which was amazing."

"The workshop was definitely fun and worth every minute. We formed different teams and we had to become comfortable in working with someone you have not worked with before in the beginning, and in the end we came up with some pretty cool concept models."

"The workshop was really fun, relaxing and informative. I learned how not to overthink and to brainstorm as much as possible and narrow down my ideas."

"It was a great experience for me. The professor did a great presentation and without knowing it we were able to come up with futuristic ideas and prototypes."

Tanzania - Big Data

"I sincerely express the depth of appreciation for the skills I got from the Big Data workshop conducted at NM-AIST. The model of teaching was very good for learning, very enthusiastic and very interactive where everyone contributes and shares talents, knowledge, and skills. I had two years of extensive working experience in data analysis but I became more competent. Thanks very much to Professor Jennifer Widom for sharing her talents and skills and developing cutting-edge careers and young star teams in IT and technology platforms."

Bangladesh - Big Data and Design Thinking

"I had a wonderful time. I had some idea how to analyze data and graphically represent it but still I learnt some new tricks. Tableau was really interesting. I love coding but face problems sometimes finding errors in my code. Jupyter notebooks can be really helpful for me to run my code in small parts and find errors. I was not going to attend the design thinking workshop but after attending the big data workshop I just could not help attending it and stayed the whole time. To me, it was learning new ways of thinking while having a good time. The time with you went very fast, wish I could learn more."

Bangladesh - Big Data

"In this three day workshop I have learned quite a lot about everything related to Big Data. It was bliss for me and provided me a break from my daily routine. The materials taught in class were very useful and it has enabled me to carry my thinking capabilities one step further."

India - Big Data

"Fantastic workshop, very student friendly and lots of fun hands on exercises! Great materials and encouraging goodies."

India - Design Thinking

"It was a new experience. A workshop which pushed you out of your comfort zone and amazed you knowing things you could do with your mind which you never thought of. A great platform to meet new people and form a bond with them through the journey. It is an awesome experience."

"This was a very great opportunity to learn about design and also have a hands on experience. I also learnt the way to work with the team. I mostly think about a problem in depth and start to analyse it. But here without my notice I didn't overthink anything which I found very useful. The way I interacted with my team mates provided some more improvement on my ideas. I also understood the positive and negative points about my ideas which I would not know without the team. The part in which users were brought and we were given to interview them and find the problems was amazing."

Vietnam - Big Data

"The data visualization is awesome, especially Tableau. Moreover, having an Instabase account is amazing. For me, the course is necessary for my future career. Thanks Professor Widom."

"I want to thank you for spending your time with us for the last three days. Your lecture contents are very interesting, the materials are carefully prepared, interactive and easy to understand. Moreover, what impressed me most is that your English is so easy to hear, I have not missed a word of yours for the whole lecture. I can confidently say that I have understood more than 90% of the the contents for the whole course."

"It has been an amazing three days. I've had a chance to know about machine learning. I especially like Tableau. Thank you very much professor."

Indonesia - Big Data

"Very amazing. All of the materials brought by Prof. Widom were very good. She taught us from the basic definition of Big Data through how we need to use Big Data in real life. She even taught us using SQL. How Prof. Widom taught us was a very rare experience and I hope I can meet her again. I love the sunglasses too!"

"The explanations were very clear yet deep. The technology supporting it was awesome. Thanks a lot for the inspiring Big Data material."

Thailand - Big Data

"I have learned a lot not only about Big Data, but also how to be a good teacher. Excellent model, thank you for sharing."

Bhutan - Big Data

"The 3-day Big Data training has been much more enriching than what I had expected. I was amazed by Google sheets, Tableau, and their amazing features which Professor Widom took us through so beautifully. I can still feel the excitement and I do not want to forget it so I am finding ways to keep in touch with it. Thank you for such an enlightening experience Professor Widom."

Bhutan - Design Thinking

"I have attended to your one day Design Thinking workshop which was quite amazing. I have learned a lot about myself that day. And those chaotic group works and sticky notes made our day. Professor you are an active and sociable person. We hope to see you back in Bhutan in future."

Colombia - Big Data

"The introductory course to Big Data was amazing! There were undergraduate students, graduate students, industry professionals and even professors among the audience. All of them enjoyed all the material which was presented in a very clear and rigorous manner. Many students commented on the clarity of the explanations, the appropriate balance between theory and practice and the selection of the topics. I am sure that many students will continue studying the field on their own, after this wonderful and motivating introduction. Being a professor myself, I enjoyed the very pedagogic way that Prof. Widom uses: she introduces the theory of the topic first, then presents how to apply it to a concrete example and then asks students to do a short challenge on the computer or with paper and pencil. This method ensures that the student is engaged and is able to extrapolate the acquired knowledge to a practical situation. It was an honor and pleasure to have Prof. Widom at our institution. I am sure that she has touched the brains and the hearts of our students in a very profound way."

Sri Lanka - Big Data

"It was a great privilege to be part of this highly rewarding event. I gain a huge insight on Big Data by participating for this event. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the highly generous Professor Widom for allocating her valuable time and resources for a good cause for the community. I'm grateful for what you have done and whatever you will be doing in future and I wish you the greatest success in future events like this. Thank You!"

Sri Lanka - Women in Tech

"The discussion was very interesting and useful. We rarely get a chance to discuss about issues we face as girls when dealing with technology. It was a good chance to compare the differences of how women are treated in United States and in our country as well. Professor Widom's life itself provide us many guidelines on how to manage studies and family life with studies. We were encouraged to think out of the box and go beyond the limits. The discussion was very useful and helped to change our attitudes and opinions of being a girl. I thinks these type of discussions should be conducted more to change the attitude about women in the society."

Sri Lanka - Design Thinking

"We learned how to look at a problem within a limited time and how to sort it and get an actual idea about the 'real problem' a user/users have. Also we learned about the process of design thinking which was introduced by Stanford University. We definitely had a lot of fun and learned a lot at the same time and made a lot of friends."