Mississippi continues to harness the power of big data to help its residence. According to MedCity News Mississippi’s Division of Medicaid partnered with the healthcare analytics company, MedeAnalytics, to generate a cost-efficient platform to improve health outcomes statewide by using big data technology. As Mississippi becomes more reliant on big data to enhance the quality of life for its residents, data science professionals can expect to see new opportunities and better salary offers.
Mississippi already has a proven track record for hiring data science professionals. In fact, the United States Department of Labor identified Mississippi as an employment frontrunner for several data science occupations in 2014:
- The Southwest Mississippi nonmetropolitan area held the third highest employment level for computer and information research scientists among all nonmetropolitan areas in the country. That year, there were 90 computer and information research scientists working here.
- The Northeast Mississippi nonmetropolitan area held the fourth highest employment level for data scientists in operations research nationwide, with 70 working here at that time.
- Mississippi held the fifth highest concentration of data scientists in public health epidemiological research. The state was responsible for employing 70 such data scientists that year.
Starting Salary Ranges for Data Scientist in Mississippi’s Major Cities
According to the Mississippi Development Authority, the state boasts over 340,000 miles of fiber optics and offers exceptionally low industrial and commercial power, establishing it as an ideal environment to advance data-driven and informational technology industries. As more tech companies realize Mississippi’s accommodating technology infrastructure, data scientists are likely to profit from more competitive salary offers.
The federal government also recognizes Mississippi as a great protector of the nation’s sensitive data networks. In fact, 15 out of 22 data suppliers used by the Department of Homeland Security can be found at the National Center for Critical Information & Storage Center on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The Department of Defense also entrusts one of its most treasured supercomputers in the hands of U.S. Navy personnel positioned at the Stennis Space Center in Hancock County.
In 2016, President Obama announced his TechHire initiative was expanding to include Jackson, Mississippi. TechHire directly benefits data scientists by helping them receive the superior training needed to qualify for high-paying jobs.
Furthermore, the Obama administration reports TechHire is orchestrating collaborative efforts by the Greater Jackson Partnership of Mississippi, Jackson State University, and Hinds Community College to train 1,000 job candidates between 2016 and 2020. Once properly trained, the Greater Jackson Partnership of Mississippi will connect tech workers like data scientists to open jobs in local communities.
Mississippi State University’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is another asset for data scientists in the state. The E-Center helps staff, faculty, and college students to develop new startup companies that could potentially lead to more jobs and better salaries for data scientists carving out a career here. In July 2015, the E-Center sponsored 69 emerging startups.
In 2016, Robert Half Technology reported the following salary ranges across major cities in Mississippi. The IT staffing firm arrived at these figures by canvassing thousands of job placements made in recent years. Bonuses and other incentives are not factored into these salary ranges:
- Jackson: $88,000-$104,000
- Hattiesburg: $75,000-$106,000
- Gulfport: $89,000-$105,000
- Southaven: $104,000-$146,000
- Columbus: $86,000-$121,000
- Biloxi: $89,000-$105,000
- Pascagoula: $89,000-$105,000
- Meridian: $75,000-$106,000
- Tupelo: $86,000-$121,000
- Greenville: $88,000-$124,000
- Oxford: $104,000-$146,000
Salary Variations for Data Scientists in Mississippi Based on Industry and Role
Within the field of data science, each occupational pathway and employment industry lends itself to a unique set of salary ranges. To illustrate these distinctions, the United States Department of Labor released the following salary data for several key industries and data science job classifications in Mississippi (2014):
Computer and Information Research
Regional Salary Data for Computer and Information Research Scientists in Mississippi
In 2014, the United States Department of Labor confirmed that the Southwest Mississippi nonmetropolitan area was the fourth highest paying nonmetropolitan area for data scientists working in the area of computer and information research in the country. Those working in this region earned an average annual salary of $126,960.
Regional Salary Data for Data Scientists in Operations Research in Mississippi
In 2014, the United States Department of Labor found the Northeast Mississippi nonmetropolitan area was the fourth highest paying nonmetropolitan area nationwide for data scientists involved in operations research:
- Jackson – $121,790
- Northeast Mississippi nonmetropolitan area – $131,620
The US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics information shown here reflects salary data for broad occupational classifications that include data scientists. These estimates are expressed as 90th percentile salaries to reflect the fact that data scientists are recognized as the top earners within each classification.