Should you Tell Your Kids to be Data Scientists – Not Doctors?

This was the subject of a popular article recently posted by Linda Burtch. The highlights of her article is 

“According to Burtch Works’ 2014 study of salaries for data scientists… those responsible for a team of 1-3 earn [a median salary of] $140,000 and those responsible for a team of 10 or more earn $232,500.
By contrast, the mean average annual income for a lawyer in America was $131,990 in 2013, while doctors earned $183,940, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.”
I have a better question though: Should you Tell Your Kids to be both Data Scientists and Doctors at the same time? As in doctor in data science, computer science, computational statistics, machine learning, business analytics or a related field? Does a doctorate in these fields help? It does, depending on who you worked with during your doctorate years, and your ambitions - it can either hurt or help you tremendously. Here's a story showing that you can make more money and be happier acquiring a doctorate degree in data science. Yet, very few programs are currently available, and data science research labs are a new thing.
Interestingly - as a data science entrepreneur - you can succeed with no diploma (not even primary school) as nobody will ever ask you to provide papers. It's all about domain expertize, business acumen including sales, and modern data science knowledge to beat your competitors. You can acquire all of this in little time without attending any school, not even high school, not even primary school, not even kinden garden. The technical stuff is available for free on the Internet for self-learners, and most of what creates career success is not taught in any school anyway.

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Indeed you could be both data scientist and medical doctor, as medical science is becoming increasingly statistical and analytical in nature.

That is exactly what I am doing after practicing Emergency Medicine for 20 years, and as a Chief Medical Information Officer for the last year, I have become extremely interested in predictive analytics, and specifically developing smarter bedside monitors that incorporate these predictive algorithms. I will be starting a masters degree program this fall. I wish I would have done this at the beginning of my career, but then wouldn't have the domain knowledge that I have now.


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