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Pittsburgh Data Jam

The Pittsburgh Data Jam project works in connecting sixteen of the Pittsburgh area high schools with Pittsburgh DataWorks to teach young individuals how to work with and analyze large sets of data in a six week competition. Students will form teams of five to seven people, select an intriguing set of data to analyze, and use Tableau Public computing software to help reveal trends and depict information. Once the analysis portion is completed, students will create a presentation to explain their findings at the DataJam Challenge Year-End Event & Awards Ceremony.

In an article recently published by Forbes Magazine, “Five Ways Data Analytics Will Shape Business, Sports And Politics in 2016,” president and COO of Alteryx, George Mathew, predicts data analytics to become the “hottest job of 2016.” This versatile field has a growing rate of 27% yearly, more than double the national growth average. Data analysis is applicable to every occupational field: from the fashion industry, to the 2016 Summer Olympics, to the medical field. As data analytics are continuously expanding and creating more jobs, it is crucial that we educate students with these skills. Learn about data analytics now and join Data Jam!

If you have questions or would like advice with your Data Jam project, email your Pitt Mentors at

Manuals and Project Materials Available for Download

*Please note that you DO NOT need a dropbox account to access these files-just close out of the window that prompts you to log in and then click the download button in the top right-hand corner of the page!

Data Jam 2016 Rules and Requirements

Rulebook for Data Jam 2015

Proposal Guidelines for Data Jam Projects


Data Analysis and Presentation Resources

Tableau Public User Manual

Tableau Public Flow Chart

Presentation Manual

Requirements for Data Jam Poster



Rubric for Presentation Assessment

Example Poster

Using Excel to Analyze Data

Finding R2 Values

Document Containing Links for Available Data Sets

- PowerPoint Presentations from Teacher Workshop

2016 Data Jam Workshop

2016 Teacher Workshop Presentation

Pittsburgh DataWorks - Data Jam Program

Pittsburgh DataWorks

Meet the Student Mentors:

Hi! My name is Jenny and I'm a junior here at Pitt. I'm from Rochester, NY, and for those of you about to ask "How far is that from NYC?": the answer is probably farther than you. Think of Rochester as almost in Canada. I'm majoring in industrial engineering, which deals a lot with statistics, data analysis and data manipulation. If you need help with excel or programming, I'm your girl! If you need help with making presentations and/or choosing color schemes and layouts, I am also your girl! I look forward to working with Data Jam again this year, so don't hesitate to ask any questions or ask for any advice you may need!

Hi! My name is Margaret Farrell. I'm a junior majoring in Ecology & Evolution and History of Philosophy of Science, and I'm doing a minor in Neuroscience. I'm from Easton, Pennsylvania, which is just about equidistant from Philly and NYC. At Pitt, I just started working in a research lab that studies evolutionary development. I also write for The Pitt Pulse science magazine, and I've been a dancer since pretty much forever, so I try to keep up by dancing with Pitt Ballet Club. Outside of school, I love to read, play music, eat cereal, and make lists.

Feel free to ask anything about Data Jam, science, presentations, or whatever else you might need help with. I worked with the DataJam Mentor Team last year and I'm really excited to bring that experience into helping with your projects this year!

Hola amigos! My name is Jackie Choffo and I am a junior at Pitt. I am a Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics major with a certificate in Global Health and Latin American studies. I am from Chadds Ford, PA on the eastern side of the state, a stone's throw away from Delaware. Since I was four I have been competitively swimming and avoiding running at all costs, which led me to joining the Panther Swim Club. Summer is my favorite time of the year, so by default I have worked as a lifeguard for three summers and as a swim coach for two. These past few summers I was also able to work in a modern farmhouse restaurant focused on sustainable and local food. Food, exercise, volunteering, Netflix, rescue dogs, outdoor concerts, and exploring Pittsburgh with friends are a few of my passions. 

I am so excited to be able to work with you guys throughout this project! This is my third year working with Data Jam, so feel free to ask me about research questions, data visualizations, presentations, or anything else that comes up during the data analytic process. I can't wait to see the great ideas you guys will be coming up with!   


Hi! My name is Laura Marshall and I’m a sophomore at The University of Pittsburgh where I intend to study Athletic Training on the Pre-Physical Therapy track. I’m from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania where I was previously involved in softball, field hockey, lacrosse, skiing, playing the drums, and volunteering with Thon and Special Olympics. I absolutely love chocolate chip banana pancakes, being Pittsburgh’s number one sports fan, watching 22 Jump Street and How I Met Your Mother, listening to The Killers and drinking mass amounts of coffee. Good luck on your Data Jam projects and always feel free to message us if you have any questions!

Hi guys, my name is Kyle Wyche and I am a sophomore studying at The University of Pittsburgh. I intend on majoring in Environmental Science and Physics & Astronomy. Previously, I was a sprinter on my track team, running races from 100m to 400m, I was involved in student government, and a large contributor to community service. A little bit more about me: I have two siblings, I love nature, gardening, drawing, and getting to know new people. If you guys ever have any questions, feel free to ask me and good luck this year!

My name is Chris Davis. I am originally from Pittsburgh, and am now a sophomore studying neuroscience here at Pitt. I have always loved science and hope one day to make a career out of it. I played sports all throughout high school, everything from football to swimming, and am also an avid Pittsburgh sports fan! I am excited to work on the Pittsburgh Data Jam and help in whatever way I can!