Pakistani women have been making their mark in the STEM field nationally and internationally. Moreover, they are bridging the gender gap in tech quite rapidly. Aqsa Kausar is a great example of such talented, smart, and hardworking women that have made immense contributions to the field of science. She is the first female Google Developer Expert in Machine Learning in Pakistan.
Aqsa has arranged various workshops in several events, like Google DevFest 2018 and Google Cloud Next Extended 2019; both conducted in Islamabad. Furthermore, she also participated in Google’s Machine Learning Train-The-Trainer session held in Singapore recently.
Aqsa has always believed that the right mentorship can lead people to immense success, and she was fortunate to get connected to mentors at GDE. Currently, as an employee of Red Buffer, a Machine Learning and AI software services company based out of Islamabad, she plans to lead the team and new talent in the right direction.
For those who believe that following up on tech-related careers will not earn them something big, they can now reflect on their thoughts. The life story of Aqsa Kausar may provide the missionary zeal that many youngsters are lacking to thrive in pursuit of their dreams. Groups like GDE serve as a link between the aspirations of tech-savvy women and their goals for success. Importantly, the Google Developer Programs allow anyone from any part of the country to participate and bring forward their skills.
Hailing from the capital of Pakistan, Aqsa, developed an interest in the machine learning sector during her school days. During their schooling period, Aqsa was inspired by the thought of replicating human attributes in machines.
At that moment, despite having an elder sister who’s a doctor, she decided to pursue engineering instead of medical science. After finishing A-levels in science (physics, chemistry, and mathematics), Aqsa joined the National University of Science and Technology for a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (BSEE). But the road to ML was not easy considering the limited opportunities in the country.
Aqsa went through numerous internships and even made it to the ‘must-hires’ list of a company. However, she could not secure a job. After remaining unemployed for over eight months, the tech fanatic got a job at a startup. But finding employment was not her ultimate goal. Aqsa wanted to acquire skills other than what her resume tells people. As an ML Engineer, she has hands-on experience with a diverse set of projects ranging from footfall forecasting to cataract detection following her work on projects related to augmented reality, object detection, and recommender systems.
Soon she heard about Google’s Developer Program (GDE) from where her journey to pursue her dream and career in ML began. She became one of the four women from Pakistan to be selected as a GDE in 2021.