How Real-World AI Projects Helped Me to Become a Data Science Instructor

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Aug 31, 2022
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How Real-World AI Projects Helped Me to Become a Data Science Instructor

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Read the story of Sambit Das, who leveraged his HR and consulting career to become a data science lecturer through his hard work, pursuing a Data Science Master’s degree at the age of 42 with two young kids, and how the Omdena experience led him to create a popular course on NLP released on Udemy.

Sambit, can you describe your journey into data science?

I have a master’s degree in data science and graduated from Northwestern University, United States, with specializations in Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing, and Deep Learning. 

I am also an award-winning HR Consultant with over 16 years of HR transformation and systems consulting experience globally. Currently, I am working as a lecturer at Kaplan Business School in Australia alongside my consulting roles.

My passion is to conduct research work and experiments that help improve the workplace by finding answers to workforce problems in areas such as employee productivity, well-being, employee attrition, diversity and inclusion, recruitment, engagement surveys and outcomes, organizational network analysis, and many more. 

I have published several case studies on people analytics in the areas of diversity and inclusion, recruitment, and learning. My case studies are published in the prestigious TowardsDatascience publication, which taps into the brains of the world’s most insightful writers, thinkers, and storytellers to bring you the smartest take on topics that matter.

My dedication to academics started with my journey as a conference speaker and data science blogger. I have been privileged to present my work in leading Asia pacific conferences and to be accepted as an author by TowardsDatascience. 

In 2020, my capstone project @Northwestern was focused on building a COVID question and Answering system using NLP. Post my graduation, I have always wanted to create a course that can break down the concepts in a structured manner for a beginner to build and deploy such state-of-the-art AI applications. 

It’s a beautiful feeling to be able to give back to the community in any way I can. I am currently teaching at Business School – the Master of Business Analytics, Kaplan,  Australia.

Here are some of my work references: 

What is your current job? 

I am a freelancer, and I am involved with the following projects :

  • Data Analyst (Contracting) at Engineering and Construction company Acciona.
  • Udemy Instructor – How to develop and deploy a real-world state-of-the-art COVID-19 Question and Answering System that searches and extracts answers to any question from users in over 200K research papers in real-time.
  • Data Science Lecturer at Kaplan Business School.
  • AI Technical Mentor at Omdena (part-time).

Can you share a point in your career where things got a bit difficult? And how did you overcome roadblocks? 

At the age of 42, with two young kids, I never imagined I could complete a Master’s degree in Data Science program. But I did finish the course in 2020 after 2 years of part-time online study and many late nights and weekend work. The Omdena experience for me was really an extension of my student life. Thanks to the experience, I was able to connect back to the Academic world as a data science lecturer towards the end of 2021.

How did the Omdena experience help you? What tips would you give to current Omdena collaborators? How can they make the best out of this experience? 

Since Jan 2020, I have been involved in several NLP projects in Omdena. These projects have given me a lot of depth in technical knowledge in entity extraction modeling, question, answering, and label box annotation. We have extensively used Microsoft Azure for deployment purposes. One of the most important benefits of working in Omdena was building my network of colleagues and friends with whom I often connect to either work on projects or chat in general about NLP.

In 2021 I collaborated with some of my colleagues whom I met in Omdena to work on a full-fledged course on How to Build and Deploy a COVID question and answering system that can fetch real-time answers from over 200,000 research papers. In this course, we discussed everything (including live coding) from downloading the dataset to building the elastic search database, Q&A engine, dockerizing, and deploying it.

I am pleased to share the exciting news that our course went live @Udemy on 1st Jan 2022.

Any closing words?

I strongly recommend Omdena to anyone who wants to learn and grow in the field of AI. Thanks to Omdena, I got the opportunity to work on projects such as RebootRx, Equilo, Juicy Data, and Redactable. Each has given me a tremendous opportunity to learn and grow in the AI field.

If you want to improve your skills, get job offers, and solve meaningful problems, click here to apply to our real-world AI projects.

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