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A few years ago, mentioning the term big data, even within industry circles, was more than likely to elicit some quizzical stares. In 2018, it’s hard to find a business that isn’t already deeply immersed in the technology. That’s emblematic of a field that has exploded in popularity worldwide, and that continues to grow exponentially with each passing day. It has been good news for industries of every kind, and a boon to qualified big data professionals, too.

Although there’s been a huge surge in demand for big data skills in the job market, there hasn’t yet been a corresponding surge in training to meet that demand. That has led to a much-discussed “skills gap” in the big data field that has caused no small amount of hand-wringing by industry analysts. The disparity in the number of available positions compared to the number of qualified applicants has even spurred a massive surge in demand for contractors that have the skills to serve as a stopgap for talent-starved companies.

The news on the hiring side isn’t all bad, though. There’s been some recent data to suggest that the skills gap is beginning to narrow, and it appears that the educational industry has finally …

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