Data science, mentoring, and app development
We love connecting with C4K alum! We caught up with Keoni Murray. Learn how his mentor inspired an interest in data science and led to Keoni’s first app development.
- When did you join C4K? When did you graduate from C4K? I joined C4K at the beginning of 2017, during my senior year, and remained in the program for about a year. In August 2018 right before college, I exited the program.
- What’s a favorite memory during your time at C4K? I actually have two favorite memories, both of them were field trips. One would be going to Capital One which was pretty cool and I met a lot of cool interesting people there. The other was box seats at a UVA basketball game. C4K managed to get tickets for a UVA basketball game and we were all able to sit in the box seats and they gave us so much free stuff, lots of free food, a bunch of free shirts, and things like that. (Thanks for the awesome seats, QIM)!
- Favorite project @ C4K? I did four but the one that I’d say was my best was a prototype for an app called MUVE, which was an app that would help college students find roommates. It was like a roommate recommendation app based on your likes and interests. It was my favorite project in the context of C4K, but I’d also rate it as my worst project compared to where I am now. Thinking back to it [MUVE app], that project set the path for a bunch of other stuff I would end up working on later on so it was a foundational project, but looking back I realized I made so many mistakes.
- How has mentoring at C4K impacted your life? Mentoring helped me a lot. As I think back and see where I am now, it was a foundational moment. When I first came to C4K, my background was in design and visual design of applications and websites. The mentor I was paired with had a background in mathematics and data science. I didn’t know a lot about that and he influenced me to study and research it more and learn the math behind it, which gave me the idea for my app, MUVE, which was a very data science heavy app despite me not knowing how to do the math at the time. From there and when I went to college, I started figuring out exactly what I wanted to focus on. The conversations with my mentor and the projects we did together influenced the path that I chose, which is very data-driven. Mentoring led to where I am now professionally.
- Since graduating, what has been your career path? When I left C4K, I went to a school that was partnering with a university that specialized in entrepreneurship, computer science, and building products. Throughout my time there I started worked on a bunch of data science related products. From there I transitioned into doing internships mostly in advertising and media in the media space. One of the places was Fullscreen, an influencer management company that manages YouTube influencers like Mr. Beast, Logan Paul, and a few other. From that experience I landed in consulting because my role there was data science and data engineering. I was building out a tool to predict which influencers would become mainstream for their talent teams so they could get signed before they blew up. Now I am consulting for different startups, leveraging the insight I’ve gained from past work－from MUVE, my anime app, and from my internship experience－ building products and working on my own stuff.
Last remarks about C4K!
C4K is a phenomenal space especially if you like doing and learning a lot of stuff. There’s so much you can do there and so many people to connect with. If you have the opportunity to be a part of the program, do everything that’s there. Don’t get locked into one thing, explore different things.
Advice to members in the program:
Pick the hardest thing that you can work on, and work on that. It usually works out.