News & Press

Burtch Works and Northwestern University Machine Learning & Data Science Launch a New Strategic Partnership to Provide Companies with Practicum and Capstone Projects

July 31, 2023

[Chicago, IL, July 31, 2023] – Burtch Works, the national leader in talent solutions, providing contract staffing, executive search, and managed services specializing in data science, analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning (ML), proudly announces the expansion of its strategic partnership with Northwestern University to include promotion of Master of Science in Machine Learning & Data Science (MLDS) Practicum and Capstone projects through the McCormick School of Engineering.

MLDS Practicum projects span eight months and are a critical component of the program’s immersive curriculum. Beginning in October, groups of MLDS students apply their coursework to solving real-world data challenges in collaboration with company sponsors, who provide access to their data in tandem with the vision of the desired end product. Through this engaging experience, students gain valuable insights while leveraging their education to provide data-driven solutions that benefit the company sponsors.  Similarly, MLDS Capstone projects -- beginning in September and conducted over 10 weeks during final fall quarter before graduation -- offer students another opportunity to work closely with company sponsors and solve more complex data challenges than Practicum projects.

Burtch Works will now offer access to MLDS Practicum and Capstone partnership opportunities, providing students with a diverse range of industry projects and the benefits of collaboration to its expansive network of industry contacts. These benefits include cutting-edge insight and solutions to pressing data problems and projects, and access to a robust hiring pipeline for internships and full-time opportunities alike.

Stephen Dowling, Associate Director of the Office of Professional Education at McCormick School of Engineering, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership, stating, “Practicum and Capstone projects are a critical part of the Machine Learning and Data Science curriculum. Drawing on data provided by industry clients, MLDS students apply their coursework toward providing valuable data solutions in a partnership mutually beneficial for both our cohort and project sponsors. Burtch Works, well-known specialists in data analytics talent solutions with a long-time relationship with Northwestern University, was a natural choice to help source project sponsors for the future. We are excited to extend the benefits of MLDS collaboration to their client base.”

Michael Butts, CEO of Burtch Works states, “this partnership is a testament to Burtch Works' commitment to cultivating talent and supporting higher education initiatives that advance the data and analytics industry. We greatly value our long-standing relationship with Northwestern University and are excited to bring our expertise and career advocacy to elevate the MLDS student’s experience by providing guidance and diverse Practicum and Capstone opportunities.  We’re also thrilled to bring this highly engaged talent pool closer to our community of client partners who can benefit from having these engagements. The is an excellent win-win opportunity for both sides of our community, talent and client, and we’re excited about the value this partnership brings to the industry.”

About Burtch Works: Burtch Works is a renowned leader in total talent solutions, specializing in data science, analytics, AI, ML, data engineering, business intelligence, predictive analytics, and technology. With a strong focus on fostering community through advocating for talent and solving business challenges, Burtch Works serves as a trusted partner to both organizations and professionals alike, offering unparalleled expertise, career guidance, and compelling job opportunities.

For more information about Burtch Works, please visit [].

About Northwestern University's Master of Science in Machine Learning & Data Science Program: Northwestern’s Master of Science in Machine Learning and Data Science (MLDS) program provides data scientists with a technical background in machine learning and artificial intelligence, complemented by the soft skills required to ethically lead. Graduates are prepared to guide teams, organizations, and society into a future where privacy, equity, and autonomy will be at the forefront of decision-making. Students arrive with a variety of backgrounds and learn from world-class faculty in a cohort model, through coursework designed exclusively for the program. Students apply their education to business problems that require creative thinking and novel solutions, provided by a diverse portfolio of industry partners.

For more information about MLDS, please visit [].

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