The Rise of the Scurry of Chipmunks

Ready to Roll

First things first, a group of Chipmunks are called ‘Scurry’.

(This is an informative blog and that was your first sip of information, and yes, ofcourse — you are welcome :D)

This is my first blog for the ChiPy Mentorship Program and I am ..a MENTEE!

My name is Smitha, I work in quant role at ARB Trading Group — have a background in Finance and I program everyday in Python.

How did I get here?

My sole reason to attend ChiPy, intially, was to “Network” as I was actively looking for opportunities fresh out of graduate school. I started to regularly attend the ChiPy events from July 2016 thanks to my friend Joshua, who is a regular!

I had attempted programming in Python 1.5 years ago but got serious with it only in August 2016 and it is all through ChiPy. I met one of my friends’ friend at the ChiPy Polyglot event and he introduced me to ‘Learn Python the HARD way’ by Zed A. Shaw. He told me his 10 years old son codes Python easily and I shouldn’t find it tough! He was right!! My confidence with programming boosted and I wanted to explore more, which is around the time when the ChiPy Mentorship Summer Finals event happened and I came out extremely inspired and determined to participate in the next season of it.

I had been conceptualizing a project named ‘Risk Flip’ since late last year for a company called Metrixx LLC where I briefly interned. I had the calculation done in Excel and GUI prototype done in C#(with the limited knowledge I had in it), I was looking to make it into a website. The ChiPy Mentorship program seemed the perfect gateway for me to make this project come alive and upgrade my skills.

Now at the onset of the Mentorship program, I know what my project outcome has to look like. I know a fair amount of ‘Python for data science’ as I have been working with Numpy, Pandas and some scikit learn. AND most importantly I know my mentor, Michael J. Ward! I met him at the Finance SIG ChiPy hackathon where we happened to be in the same team and I had no knowledge of Python. He had been a mentor to me that day and continues to be, he is a great source of knowledge and extremely helpful!

As I have been working on the project, StackOverflow has been helping me A LOT! Other than that Python for Data Analysis by Wes McKinney(my first part of the project is Data Analysis and Data Modelling). I start the Web Dev part of the project in a later stage.

I am basically trying to build a website for amateur investors/traders, to help them hedge their risk with an extremely simple Beta Hedging — I plan to add more to it, but first, lemme take a selfie!!

Haha that was lame! However, I feel pretty upbeat and excited about life. I am finally getting to give life to my close-to-death project and in an extremely encouraging environment! Thank you to the Chipy Mentorship team and Raymond Berg for giving me this opportunity.

Happy python-ing, until next time!