Sonya Berg, Ph.D., Mathematics, '12
When Sonya Berg (Ph.D., mathematics, ’12) came to UC Davis to study quantum computing, she didn’t know her training would lead her to Stitch Fix, an online retailer that delivers a personalized shopping experience. “I assumed that I would become a professor,” she said. But Berg soon realized her interests were more suited to helping companies deliver a great customer experience. The combination of creative and analytical work at Stitch Fix appeals to Berg, who was a client before she starting working at the company. “I really relate to our target market,” she said.
Stitch Fix’s business model relies on data science experts like Berg to develop custom algorithms to match customers with clothes they will love. Currently, Berg is exploring what site experience would best resonate with a visitor who is seeing stitchfix.com for the first time.
“This is a huge open research question: what data do we even have for these visitors, and how does it relate to what they want to see on the site? This is where my math background really shines because it trained me to solve very nebulous open problems by chunking them into manageable pieces and solving each of them one at a time,” Berg said.
— Becky Oskin, content strategist for the College of Letters and Science.