Shubhi Asthana — An Unstoppable Mum and Achiever

Hello Lovelies, it’s Sunday again.

Ready to meet this week’s wonder woman?

A dreamer, achiever, and a strong mother: Shubhi Asthana.

Her achievements have blown our minds. So, without further ado, let’s get to know her.

Shubhi: Currently, I am a researcher and development lead at IBM Research, Almaden, San Jose, California.

IBM Research Almaden is one of the eight IBM research centers across the globe. It’s one of the most beautiful places to work in Silicon Valley, nestled in the hills in San Jose. I work with an incredible set of geniuses on cutting-edge research for AI, Cloud, and information technology as well as exploratory research in varied areas.

IBM Research Almaden

I am grateful that my research work has appeared in several top-tier services and machine learning conferences including NeurIPS, IEEE SCC, IEEE AI & MS, IEEE SOLI, IEEE BigData & INFORMS among others with over 50+ citations.

Apart from this, I have given both invited and submitted talks at several conferences and workshops, like the Women in Services Computing workshop, as well as helped co-organize some workshops. In addition, my innovative work led to filling 12+ patent disclosures within IBM.

Recently I also received recognition from the Watermark Conference for Women in February 2020.

Check out my work here!

Let’s take a trip down her journey.

Shubhi: It all started in Pune — Oxford of the East, where I was studying engineering at Pune Institute of Computer technology (PICT). I was fascinated with systems and building prototypes that I wanted to pursue my studies in engineering after graduation.

With the support of my parents, elder brother, and professors, I applied for a Masters and came to the US. Coming to the US all on my own changed my life 360 degrees. From being a pampered child, I learned how to balance tough studies, projects along with taking care of myself.

Getting my first job, first promotion over the years and seeing my hard work being recognized, gave me a sense of accomplishment. I climbed the career ladder gradually over the years and love my work in research. Innovating my ideas into patents and publications, winning Machine Learning hackathons, mentoring interns, everything has culminated in my tech life and given me immense joy.

Last year, I gave birth to a wonderful daughter. Barely two months into maternity leave, I started longing for work and started doing some side projects in my free time. I even wrote publications during my maternity leave and a blog.

Her inspiration:

Shubhi: My diary! I maintain a diary with my aspirations, goals whether short term or long term. I keep a log of what I achieve every month. My diary ensures that I stay productive every day and balance my career goals and family time. Also, my husband who ensures that my goals are realistic and keeps me grounded, and motivates me to move forward in my work.

*Fishes out a diary to start keeping a tab of goals and achievements*🤭

Her vision:

Shubhi: I envision a future where I lead my team into the development of integrated predictive analytics solutions with a high impact on services. Since I am well known in the field of services and machine learning, I want to use my knowledge in delivering projects that have a direct impact on revenue.

Additionally, I have a passion for helping women in software engineering fields, by mentoring them at different stages of a career in the tech industry.

Margaret Fuller said, “If you have the knowledge, let others light their candles in it”.

I founded and pioneered a new weekly technical column called “Tech Jargon” in the city newspaper named The Campbell Express, to share my passion for learning tech. This column intends to introduce non-engineering people to complex technical terms and jargons like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Cloud Computing, etc.

Many people have benefited from reading this technical column, and I have received positive feedback from people varied all ages especially between the 60s-90s.

I also took my passion for inspiring women in tech one step further by actively blogging on multiple platforms. Many of my posts on how women can thrive in tech have been highlighted and read by more than 50,000 people around the world and published by Medium publishers such as freeCodeCamp and Code Like a Girl.

Additionally, I volunteer with the IEEE Women in Engineering, Silicon Valley organization to bring technology to young women professionals by blogging on important topics and events happening in the Bay Area.

I would like to add here, she is thriving and helping people around her understand the technology better and also works for equality :)

Her support system:

Shubhi: My parents are my first source of inspiration. They motivated me to achieve my dreams and my brother mentored me all the way. Additionally, my husband has been the backbone of my success in the past few years.

Simple pleasures she enjoys:

Shubhi: Playing with my 10-month daughter, crafting, and writing for my weekly column ‘Tech Jargon’. ‘Tech Jargon’ is a column I started in November 2017 and is aimed at introducing non-engineering women to tech, through the city newspapers Almaden Times and Evergreen Times.

Lastly, your message for young girls:

Shubhi: Have short and long-term goals for yourself. Find women who have achieved those goals, and see what lessons you can learn from their career. Keep Dreaming and work to fulfill them!

Our key takeaway:

Consistency, hard work, focus, and most importantly, having a vision and goals will get you anywhere you want to go. Also, keep a journal or a note of your achievements as well as your goals to keep you more focused and updated as to where you are, where you want to go, and how to get there.

Keep sharing the knowledge you have to help as many people as you can. It is one of the most underrated career boosters out there.

Writer’s note: This story is written in collaboration with Hiral Thaker.

That’s a wrap for this week! We will be back next week with another inspirational woman and her journey.

Till then let us know your key takeaways from Shubhi’s journey in the comment section or tweet us at @romaamarnani and @hiralthaker12

If you want to share your story with the world, reach out to us at inspireuswomenwho@gmail.com! We would love to learn and share your story and help you inspire others.

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram where we talk about more than empowerment and have a little fun as well!

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Roma

Roma

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Tech Writer, Content Marketer, Product Enthusiast, Management Student — IMT — I geek out about UI/UX, books, music, physics, cosmos, sci-fi!