Machine learning & Data Science is a very interesting technology in itself. These days, Machine learning is being applied in every field as it makes work & job easier and increases accuracy.

I have been very lucky that I have always been encouraged and supported by my parents, teachers, peers and everyone around me to pursue my career in technology. Also, being in a girl’s college, changes my perspectives., I received a good level of encouragement. So, I was living in a perfect world where girls were given equal importance, freedom and encouragement, unaware of the problems faced by other women.

When I met Ms. Sucheta Dhere and when she shared the stories of women around, I realized, even though we live in an advance and so-called equal world, women do face a challenges in the technical world. Sometimes due to some prejudices and stereotypes and sometimes due to being a minority.

Yes, even today most corporate offices do not have a decent male, female ratio and hence women still are in minority and do not have a voice. Ma’am pointed out very well the challenges for the women who had to take a break in their career due to motherhood and are wanting to come back!, They find it difficult to cope up with the growing needs of the industry and they find themselves lost. Also, sometimes they are not given equal opportunity due to the gap they had in their career.

So, to solve some of these problems Sucheta ma’am started the community “Women in Machine Learning and Data Science” (WiMLDS) Pune Chapter. WiMLDS is a worldwide organization that aims to support women in Machine Learning.

The Pune chapter was started in July 2018 and it has already reached 850+ members in just 6 months. They have been following a very methodological approach to empower people with Machine Learning skills. They first started with a survey of their audience. The result of the survey indicated that the audience was of a beginner’s level. So, they started with a very structured approach and organised meetups to learn machine learning step by step.

Their aim is to reach out to women who want to re-skill and up-skill themselves, and empower them by knowledge sharing and giving them a platform to network, connect with industry, provide internship opportunities, job opportunities, buddies, support system and like-minded people to help & motivate each other.

In December, they organized a workshop with IBM on model optimization. This was a great opportunity for women to learn as well as network.

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In November, they also collaborated with Women in Data Science (WiDS), which is a Stanford University Initiative. Sucheta ma’am is the WiDS Pune Ambassador. She is taking great efforts and doing excellent planning for an amazing conference on 23rd March 2019.

Website Link to the conference:

https://sites.google.com/view/widspune2019/about

Stay tuned for my next blogs, where I am going to write in detail about the conference and each preconference event and its objectives and how it fits in the larger frame of things.