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Debugging Diversity

Mar/02/2024 / by Team Seema

How one engineer is on a mission to get more South Asian women in tech, especially those from less affluent backgrounds

Despite campaigns to get more women into technology in recent years, women’s representation still lags woefully behind. In fact, according to research by Hired.com, 18% of technology roles are filled by women and only a third of those are Asian.

That stat doesn’t surprise Angelina Aziz, a British software engineer and tech founder. She notes that still many traditional South Asian parents advocate instead for daughters to pursue biology, medicine or other traditional fields. “Engineering is seen as a viable career choice for men,” she recently told the BBC. “More traditional south Asian parents don’t advocate for their daughters to go into it.”

As a South Asian woman, Aziz felt fortunate to have encouragement from her family to pursue a career in STEM. She has found that the technology sector offers a better work-life balance compared to fields like healthcare and big pharma. So she’s been on a mission to use her own skills to help advocate for students like her. 

In 2023, Aziz co-founded the AI platform Auralyze AI, which helps disadvantaged students prepare for university interviews using real admission questions and AI feedback. Aziz met her co-founder at a Muslims in Tech event in early 2023. Just two weeks after starting to work together, they created the first prototype of Auralyze AI to help level the playing field for less affluent students with university admissions. 

Lacking the resources and coaching wealthier applicants have, students from poorer backgrounds are less likely to get offers from top universities. But her technology aims to give these students a leg up. By using her software, students can record themselves answering questions from typical admission interviews and the AI will offer feedback on how to improve their communication skills. 

By encouraging more South Asian women to consider technology careers, Aziz hopes to inspire a new generation of diverse leaders in the field. With more role models and family support, Aziz believes South Asian women can truly transform technology for the better.

Seema

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