Hi! I'm Afreen Bhumgara.

I'm interested in the intersection of software engineering, analytics & product management.

I'm always trying
to make a change.

All about me!

I am pursuing a Master's degree in Computer Science at Northwestern University. Prior to that, I graduated top of my class with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Pune University. An ardent fan of all things technology, I can often be found involved in the world of software development, algorithms, artificial intelligence, data science, neural networks, and mathematics.

My interests have led me to work on research and projects in machine learning & its applications in software development - particularly, building models to detect network intrusions with the help of ML classifiers, designing novel algorithms to perform sentiment analysis of social media comments, creating deep neural networks for image recognition, performing text to image conversion using generative adversarial networks, leveraging techniques to effectively manage big data and studying how big-data can help climate change mitigation policies, as well as, understanding how big data policies can lead to improvements in the agro-climate industry in developing countries like India!

 

Over the past years, I have worked on numerous projects & have collaborated with several researchers & companies in hopes of bringing about a change. I have also presented my work at multiple international conferences such as IEEE and won awards at various platforms. I have served as a panel member at numerous international conferences & technical events and spoke at TEDx twice about issues I deeply believe in.

My aim is simple - use the power of technology to help organizations build reliable software systems, build and manage efficient & optimal products, make better decisions, & enhance user-experience. I also want to use technology to help local & not-for-profit organizations make a difference, especially in India.

My passions encompass a wide range of domains – & you will often find me involved in numerous things - from being President at various clubs, the founder of a startup that aims to help the unprivileged and less resourceful segments of society - specifically women & kids in India, the founder of an Animal Shelter in Pune, implementing my cloud computing algorithms in non-government organizations throughout India, serving as a peer reviewer for international journals such as IEEE, being the head & organizer of multiple technical fests, while also working as a Teacher & Activist at a local NGO.

 

I am also particularly interested in STEM Education & urge women to take up STEM-based courses, thereby organizing various events and conferences in Pune that help shed light on the same.

Raised in a male-dominated environment, I am a feminist, & am very passionate about women's issues. I am also a mental health advocate and believe strongly in self-love. Coming from a background where mental health is considered a stigma, and having suffered from depression, I now encourage talking about the same & turning to help whenever possible, instead of giving in to the stigma.

I believe that my words can shed light on various issues that our country faces while opening up new perspectives and changing the world one day at a time. And hey, I have a tattoo that says "wanderlust" - which obviously cannot quantify my love for travel! Besides all of this, I am currently authoring my first poetry book, and I am an avid blogger. 

I am timid & have social anxiety - but you won't notice that, because I make every effort to make new friends & talk aloud on issues close to my heart. Also, if you give me ice cream, I will instantly be friends with you.

 

Someday, I hope to make an impact with my actions!

If you've read everything till here, send me an email so I can thank you & we can hang out over coffee. I'll also treat you to donuts; you deserve it. Thanks.

Programming  Machine Learning
Software Development Computer Vision

 Product Management Mathematics

Computer Networks & Security  UI/ UX Design

 Travel Poetry 

Zen

"My goal is to use technology to help improve

people's lives!"

I want to
create intuitive software systems that
IMPROVE QUALITY & help organizations develop tools
to 
augment technical work & productivity.

Moreover, I want to use my knowledge to help organizations augment their technical growth while focusing on reliability and usability for the end-user and productivity for the programmer.

I am now trying to leverage the powers of machine learning algorithms and software engineering to
bridge this gap.

Other things about me -

I want to help the unprivileged and those who do not have easy access to resources.

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I am a first-generation college student with limited access to resources and education. My parents grew up in small towns of rural India but worked very hard to give me a bright future. When I was little, my mother taught herself English so I could learn the language & attend school. I was always a bright kid at school - achieving rank one, working hard, and participating in every event that I could!

 

I now realize that I had the privilege to accomplish these things - supportive parents, a conducive work environment, and financial resources (little, but enough) to buy books. I want to use this privilege to change the world - a bit, every day.

 

I recognize the barriers faced by women, especially women in South-East Asian societies and those from India, and hence have been committed to diversity for several years. When I graduated from high school, I joined a local NGO, and during my service there, I realized the challenges faced by women in Indian society. Our group consisted of women from different walks of life - acid-attack survivors, divorced women, and women who were physically abused, who were eager to learn.

 

Despite the stark and compelling differences in each one's personality, all these women shared some common factors - grief, years of fighting with stigma and patriarchy, and the feeling that they weren't competent enough to survive in a male-dominated society.

 

My days in this NGO pushed me to start my little organization wherein I teach women life-skills such as working on the computer, talking in English, negotiating, and some skills of real-estate industry that I picked up from my father who has his own firm.

 

When I started my organization, I was only helping one woman, but eventually, I had the privilege of impacting the lives of eighteen women. For most, this may not be a lot - but I worked with women who were physically abused, and some who had been thrown out from their houses, left alone to fend for themselves and their children; I am incredibly grateful to have interacted with these women. Now, they work in shopping complexes after picking up on English - some as receptionists and other desk jobs, and one woman even started her own real estate firm.

 

I also have a keen interest in promoting STEM Education to young children, especially girls in India and have taken an active role during college to participate in outreach programs, thereby increasing female enrollment at my college by 11 percent.

I now look forward to taking active initiative and be an advocate for the underprivileged as well as female involvement in STEM programs. I also want to use my knowledge and harness the power of machine learning and software development in simple things - developing ML algorithms to predict weather conditions for farmers and creating software that can help women sell accessories online.

My aims are simple yet sophisticated- and I am now working on achieving them!

Keynotes

& Talks

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Newspaper Articles

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