Meet Alum Michael Pettinati ’13, Data Scientist, Biofourmis

Name: Michael Pettinati

Class Year: 2013

Title: Data Scientist

Organization: Biofourmis


1. In one sentence, what does your job entail? 

I develop algorithms using large datasets to improve upon and support patient health.


2. What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decided it was a good fit for you?    

I went to graduate school for a PhD following holy cross. I attended Ga Tech. I spoke at length with my academic and research advisors (professors Royden and king) about this decision. I had the opportunity to visit these schools upon acceptance and interview with the professors I would be working with. It was these visits that cemented that I wanted to be at ga tech.


3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?  

I was involved in the recruitment office my freshman year, and. I worked in food services my first year on campus. I provided tutoring through the computer science department when I was at holy cross. I was a TA and RA for the computer science department as well. I participated in research over the summers with Professor Royden. I was also a member of the honors college and did a senior thesis with professor Royden.


4. What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?  

I was a double major in mathematics and computer science. My work at holy cross was the foundation for my graduate school work, which lead my first job in industry.


5. What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work? 

Holy cross gave me a solid foundation as a programmer, and I write scripts everyday at my job. Also, Holy Cross gave me my first experience doing research. I learned to approach problems from different angles. I understood how to ask questions that have value, learn what has been done to answer those questions and do the work to help answer those questions.


6. What advice do you have for students today?

Although it’s very cliche, I think it’s important to know that failures are only the end if you let them be. There is no single assignment, test, denial, etc. that prevents you from continuing to study and work on things that interest and excite you.