A 'Moneyball' moment for business analytics grad
Editor's note: This story is part of a series of profiles of notable fall 2020 graduates.
When most people think about analytics in sports, they consider stats like free throw percentages, fourth down conversions, or home run exit velocity. But W. P. Carey Outstanding Graduate Student Jeff Luczak (MS, business analytics) saw a whole other side to analytics in sports.
“I was working in sales for the Phoenix Suns when I started having conversations with individuals in analytics at both the Phoenix Suns and Indiana Pacers," he said. "The ability to tackle complex problems and drive decisions that impact the bottom line was very exciting to me.”
Luczak knew he wanted the next step in his career to focus on using analytics to drive business decisions, so he decided to return to school for his master’s degree in business analytics. While maintaining a 4.0 GPA throughout his program, he additionally completed analytics internships at Nexant and Women in Technology International. While his curiosity and aptitude pushed him through his studies, Luczak's true passion lies in building community with his ASU peers. He has been extremely focused on improving the relationships with his colleagues, and planned events spanning across graduate programs prior to the pandemic. Luczak truly understands success comes not just from crunching numbers, but also creating relationships and sustaining connections.
We caught up with the soon-to-be grad to learn more about his experience.
Question: What’s something you learned while at ASU — in the classroom or otherwise — that surprised you or changed your perspective?
Answer: I wouldn’t attribute one thing to changing my perspective, but countless. The reason I enjoyed the MSBA program was due to being able to work in cohorts on countless projects. This opened my eyes to different viewpoints from my classmates and continued to challenge how I tackle problems.
Q: Why did you choose ASU?
A: I chose ASU after hearing about the reputation of W. P. Carey and seeing their rankings. I knew a W. P. Carey degree would help me take the next step.
Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’d give to those still in school?
A: Expose yourself to as many people and opportunities as possible. By building up your skills and network you set yourself up for success in the short and long term.
Q: What was your favorite spot on campus, whether for studying, meeting friends or just thinking about life?
A: Most of the time I was in school, I was working at ASU for the School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences. With this, I had access to some of our conference rooms and would utilize these rooms at night to study.
Q: What are your plans after graduation?
A: I will be working in data analytics for a health care or technology company. I currently have a few offers I am considering and am excited to apply my skills to real-world problems.
Q: If someone gave you $40 million to solve one problem on our planet, what would you tackle?
A: I don’t believe $40 million dollars would be enough, but I would like to tackle climate change. If we don’t take care of our planet, there will not be much left for those that come after us.