2018 MSBA Capstone Showcase

Once again, Professor Jakki Mohr took students through the Capstone class for the MSBA which is a full-semester experience in which students apply the data science tools they have learned in the program. Starting with a raw dataset, each student works through the entire data analytics process, from generating a meaningful research question which the data will answer to selecting the appropriate analytical method to articulating business recommendations. Although incredibly challenging, engaging in the process from start to finish was a rewarding learning experience.

Encouraged to pick a subject they were passionate about, the students’ projects were diverse and demonstrated a wide variety of technical skills. Several students used datasets from local companies and government agencies; topics included: an analysis of fatal car crashes in the Missoula County, development of strategies to promote alternative transportation for Missoula County, investigation of animal fostering at the local shelter, prediction of enrollment propensity for incoming University of Montana applicants, and more.


Other students took a broader approach and analyzed larger, publicly available data or data scraped from the web or pulled from Twitter. Topics included: PGA golf player performance, prediction of box office revenue for feature films, NFL media commentary and bias, objectification of women in advertising, and the effect of prescription opioid use in Medicaid claims.

As projects were finalized, four students were voted by their classmates to present their work to the Missoula business community at the Capstone Showcase. Voted as the number one representative for the class, Marty Grant presented his artificial neural network prediction classifier used to identify workflow efficiencies in digital marketing campaigns.

Held at the Stockman’s Bank Boardroom in Downtown Missoula, the showcase comfortably hosted the 75 business professionals and students in attendance. People who attended were impressed by the technical skills learned in the program, the diversity of data sets analyzed for the course, and the knowledge that they can hire skilled data scientists from UM’s College of Business. The MSBA program is grateful to the business community for providing internships, datasets, learning opportunities, and sponsorship funds to the students, and we look forward to seeing how they can bring value to these organizations in the future.


Interested in Supporting the MSBA Program?

If you are interested in supporting the Master’s of Science in Business Analytics program, there are many ways to help.


Provide a student with the opportunity to apply the knowledge he or she has gained in the classroom in a workplace environment! Interns are ready to learn and contribute value immediately with their technical expertise.   


If you have a dataset ripe for analysis, partner with one of our students eager to analyze real company data. Not only will you receive an insightful analysis, but students benefit from exposure to unique datasets.


Donate money to the MSBA program to support our program, including student scholarships, graduate assistantships, speaker expenses, the MSBA Showcase and more. Contact program co-directors Clay Looney or Jakki Mohr.