GCHQ joined us for a few sessions of Outbox 2020. Here, Sam, a Data Scientist from GCHQ talks to us about finding your motivation.

Making a difference is important to me, and especially important in motivating me to go to work every day with a smile. This began with curiosity. As a child, I was always asking questions, and I felt compelled to find the answers. Growing up, I moved from asking “Why?” to asking “How can I help?”.  I think I’ve found an answer through working at GCHQ, and I feel incredibly proud that I can do my bit to help to keep the country safe.

I work as a Data Scientist, which sounds very snazzy, but really means I spend my time looking at data and using it to answer questions. Joining as a graduate with a humanities degree, I’d barely done any programming, and while I was excited to learn new skills, it felt a little daunting too. My team were incredibly supportive, and the knowledge that my work would have a real impact in the world pushed me to keep trying and keep learning. A year on, I’m more confident in my coding, and I care immensely about what I create.

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GCHQ has an impact everywhere – from NCSC cyber security advice to helping individuals create secure passwords to protect their data, all the way up to assisting the police catching international criminals and preventing terrorist attacks. It’s motivating and exciting to know I’ve contributed a little to something bigger. There are so many new challenges to work on, I know I’ll always be learning, and I hope I will always be able to help.

This piece was written by Sam, a Data Scientist from GCHQ.
To find out more about GCHQ, visit their webpage at gchq.gov.uk or follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

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