INSAID’s Spotlight Series: In conversation with Japjeet Kaur


INSAID’s spotlight story on Japjeet Kaur showcases her journey from academics to machine learning and her successful transition into the field of data science. The blog highlights how Japjeet overcame her initial challenges and pursued her passion for data science with the help of INSAID‘s rigorous curriculum and experienced faculty. 

Question 1: Which program and batch are you part of at INSAID & tell us more about your current work profile.

Japjeet: I am enrolled in the Postgraduate Program in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence with fellowship at INSAID in the March 2022 Cohort. I have recently joined Amity Global Business School in the Internal Quality Assurance Cell as a Data Analyst. I would be leading the NAAC Accreditation work for Amity University, Jharkhand Campus.

The accreditation of a higher educational institution is assessed on the basis of seven criteria’s which have 87 metrics. 65% metrics are quantitative in nature, whereas 35% are qualitative.

So my work includes assessing the current grade of the university, designing the action plan, and the strategic implementation of that, followed by a continuous review and prediction of the NAAC grade for the next cycles.

Question 2: Walk us through your career journey & what got you interested in Data Science & Machine Learning?

Japjeet: I have been working in the education domain for the past eight years and more. My first assignment was as a teaching assistant for BTech graduate level as a part of my Master’s Degree program in process control at NSIT, Delhi. My responsibilities included theory and lab classes for six hours a week.

Later, in September 2013, I started working as a GATE coach in association with three institutes as a freelance subject expert for Control Systems, Analytical, Optical and Biomedical Instrumentation. By April 2014, I got the opportunity to work as an Assistant Professor in the Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering Department at Galgotias College of Engineering.

Along with teaching subjects, I mentored two to three groups each semester for their final year project. This helped me to remain innovative, upgrade and upskill with new technologies.

For the past two to three years, I have been working on assignments related to artificial intelligence and data science, which ignited an interest to know more about this field.

Question 3: What all tools and packages in Data Science & Machine Learning have you mastered in your Data Science & AI program at INSAID so far?

Japjeet: I have completed six terms under my PGP program so far, which have helped me master the basics of statistics, Python, data visualization techniques, and exploratory data analysis.

The projects that I have completed so far have provided me with hands-on practice and strengthened my understanding of packages like Pandas, NumPy, Matplotlib, Seaborn, Folium, etc. Currently, I am working on machine learning models and strengthening my knowledge of various classifiers and regression models.

Question 4: What are some of initial challenges when you got started on your Data Science journey and how did you overcome it?

Japjeet: Coming from a non-technical background, coding was initially a challenge for me. However, the well-organized introduction of concepts by the top faculty in the INSAID program helped me overcome this. Consistency and daily practice have helped me stay focused and up-to-date.

Question 5: Who is your favorite faculty at INSAID and what did you learn from him the most?

Japjeet: Mr. Deepesh Wadhwani is an exceptional faculty member at INSAID and I consider him to be one of my favorites. His teaching style is admirable, as he has a unique ability to introduce complex concepts in the simplest way possible while still maintaining their significance in the field of data science.

His teaching methods are effective, making it easier for students to grasp the concepts. 

Question 6: What is the goal of Data Science?

Japjeet: Data science aims to extract insights and knowledge from data sets using statistical and computational methods. This involves tasks like data cleaning, analysis, visualization, and modeling. The resulting insights can inform and support decision-making in various fields, including business, healthcare, science, and banking.

Question 7: In your view, how has Data Science evolved in last few years?

Japjeet: The data science field is rapidly growing and has many prevalent trends. The two major trends are the increasing availability of large data sets and the growing importance of deep learning. Data science is an interdisciplinary field that encompasses areas such as statistics, machine learning, computer science, and domain expertise.

Japjeet: Exciting trends in the field include the increased use of machine learning models, advancements in tools and frameworks, and the development of deep learning and neural network models. Additionally, the controversial yet useful implementation of ChatGPT has gained attention. I’m eager to learn more about these topics.

Question 9: Which are some of the blogs that you follow?

Japjeet: I follow Medium, Towards Data Science, Data Science Society, and Data Camp.

Question 10: What is your advice to anyone wanting to start a career in Data Science?

Japjeet: My suggestion is to maintain focus and consistency through daily practice. It’s important to learn the fundamentals, including statistics, algebra, and programming languages like Python. Building a portfolio is also crucial.

Showcase your projects, experiments, and achievements on LinkedIn and GitHub, and participate in professional groups, conferences, and meetups to stay updated on new trends through blogs.

We hope you enjoyed reading this interview. Check out the INSAID Spotlight for more interesting student stories like this.

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