Spark451 Names JC Bonilla Chief Data Scientist and Head of Analytics

Posted Jan 16, 2018

Spark451 Names JC Bonilla Chief Data Scientist and Head of Analytics

JC Bonilla brings 15 years of blended experience in enrollment management and data science to Spark451’s higher education marketing and technology business units.

Westbury, NY—Spark451 today announced that Jean-Carlo (JC) Bonilla has been named its Chief Data Scientist and Head of Analytics. Based in New York City, Bonilla will lead strategic efforts in enhancing data analytics and visualization throughout the company’s services, as well as designing and implementing new artificial intelligence and machine learning features into Element451, the company’s flagship software platform for university admissions marketing and operations.

“We are thrilled to have an expert in both enrollment management and data science heading our efforts in building the next generation of intelligent admissions solutions,” says Ardis Kadiu, chief technology officer at Spark451. “JC lives and breathes data, and his knowledge of the application of machine learning and predictive modeling for admissions is outstanding. His work will help us design more intelligence and personalization into our already strong suite of services and products.”

As an enrollment management expert, Bonilla spent more than 10 years in recruitment, admissions, and academic services at New York University before joining DataKind, a not-for-profit company that specializes in cutting-edge analytics and advanced algorithms to maximize social impact. Having worked on both the enrollment management side and in a professional role in data science, he has a demonstrated domain expertise in higher education, coupled with disciplinary knowledge in advanced analytics and machine learning.

At NYU, Bonilla led multiple recruitment strategies for domestic and international markets as well as retention initiatives, academic affairs, and student services. His leadership at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering delivered increasingly larger classes for 10 consecutive years. Later, at the NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress, he was appointed to launch a new urban informatics practice and academic offering. Here, Bonilla successfully recruited ever-larger classes annually while introducing a data-driven approach to enrollment management operations.  

Bonilla earned his PhD in technology management from NYU. He also holds an MS and BS in electrical engineering from NYU and the University of Arkansas, respectively. His technical background and academic expertise provide him with a deep understanding of the interplay between data, technology, students, and enrollment management. He now teaches graduate-level courses in technology strategy, business analytics, and math for decision making as an adjunct professor of business analytics and applied data science at NYU.

"I grew up in and have spent my career working at the intersection of strategy, people, and data,” says Bonilla. “I couldn’t be happier to have found a position where I can apply all of my interests and expertise to helping institutions recruit larger, best-fit classes, as well as advance the maturity of data practices within higher education.”


About Spark451

Spark451 is a higher education enrollment strategy, marketing, and technology firm that achieves measurable results. We integrate a multitude of communication channels and digital platforms for effective recruitment, advertising, and media. Element451, our admissions marketing technology and CRM platform, empowers the personalization and automation of admissions communications and processes.


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