Hi, could you introduce yourself?
Hi, my name is Melissa and I am a 21-year-old Computer Science student. I am originally from Bulgaria but I have been living, working and studying in the UK for the past 4 years. I am exceedingly fascinated by the social, economic, environmental and political impact potential of Technology and Data Analytics. The values that guide me are excellence, integrity and sustainable development. My mission is to contribute to economic empowerment and to push for diversity in STEM.
How did you get into your current field?
I am currently working on my Data Science dissertation with a Belgian startup. I did a summer internship in Data Science with the same company and they offered to take me on as a research intern after that. My first internship after my second year of university was in Investment Banking in London - I started out as an IT project manager and then moved on to a software development role which involved building tools for one of the trading desks (I worked with Python and Java Script). I ended up as a Data Science intern after finding the company I currently work for on LinkedIn and reaching out to them because I really liked what they do. I think that what helped me the most was my background in Computer Science and my work ethic. I will be graduating with a Computer Science degree this year and all of my experience in the industry helped me land my dream job as a Commodities & Energy Analyst at Bloomberg’s Global Data Department.
What are your goals?
My main goal is to be a positive female role model in STEM and to be able to work on impactful projects in the financial industry. I am passionate about both Technology and Finance and I hope that my data solutions can help shape the future of the world economy.
Do you have a mentor?
I have a mentor who I met during my first internship in investment banking. There are a lot of misconceptions about the mentor-mentee relationship and I am convinced that you might not find the right mentor if you're actively looking for one. A mentor is someone you really connect with and it is really important to remember that it is a 2-way relationship and you need to be able to give something back so that your mentor is learning from you as well. Something to look out for when you are trying to find a mentor is intellectual challenge.
Do you mentor anyone?
I do not mentor anyone particular at the moment but I do provide guidance to people who are at an earlier stage of their career.
What tips would you give to someone wanting to break into tech?
Technology is a very vast field and there is room for everyone who wants to be a part of it. Find what you're passionate about, stay curious, keep learning and I am sure you will make it! If you feel like you're not good enough at times, or you're finding it very difficult to learn something, remember that everyone else who works in Technology feels the same way - we call it the impostor syndrome. Additionally, if you have other hobbies and interests, do not abandon them - based on my experience in the industry, I can say that most successful people in Tech are well-rounded, creative and have a lot of hobbies outside of work.
Who do you follow? What blogs do you read?
My biggest inspiration comes from reading biographies and autobiographies of people I look up to, such as Michael Bloomberg, Karlie Kloss, Bill Gates and Sheryl Sandberg. In terms of instagram blogs that have influenced me in my journey - there are quite a few - but I would say that my favourite ones are @herhelloworld, @thecodeness and @codergirl_ because their content offers a great balance between lifestyle, career, women empowerment and industry topics. And in order to stay up-to-date with the industry I read Wired, Bloomberg and Financial Times.
Any book recommendations?
My Data Science bible for beginners - "Data Science for Business" by Provost and Fawcett. This is a light read that provides the foundations of Machine Learning without going too deep in the Maths, and all the concepts are explained in a very fun way.
What’s the best way to keep up to date with what you’re doing?
Follow me on instagram at @algorithmicspace and on LinkedIn - Melissa Kadirova.
TechTwoX is here to celebrate women in Tech.
We aim to tell the stories of remarkable female talent.
Want to get involved?
Contact me firstname.lastname@example.org