Women* in Tech Series

CMS aims to build a community of women* undergrads, grads, postdocs, and alums and provide them with both practical resources and inspiration in order to further their personal career advancement goals. We plan to facilitate community-building via an ongoing series of informational and interactive events aimed to support the women* of the Caltech community, made possible with generous support by Microsoft.

We will kick the series off with “Women* in Tech: Advice and Inspiration,” an afternoon/evening event on Saturday, May 13, 2017. Details in regard to this event are below.

Event Flier (PDF)

Women* in Tech: Advice and Inspiration
Saturday, May 13, 2017
4:00-8:00 p.m.
Avery Dining Hall

Seating is Limited! Click here to register ASAP!

4:00 pm Arrival and Check-in
4:20 pm Welcome
4:30 pm Advice and Inspiration: A Panel of Women in Tech
5:30 pm Introducing Ourselves as Scientists: A Workshop
6:00 pm Dinner Served
6:40 pm Stories Behind the Soundbites with Rukmini Iyer
7:45 pm Raffle of Microsoft Surface Pro


Rukmini Iyer - Stories Behind the Soundbites

Some of you may have heard of Chimamanda Adichie’s “The danger of a single story”, or in machine learning terms, biased overfitting to what you are exposed to. The objective of my talk is to increase your exposure to STEM careers by talking of my technical career, with lessons learnt (soundbites), accompanied by the technical projects (stories) that exemplify the lesson.

Speaker Bio

Rukmini earned a PhD in Electrical Engineering in statistical language modeling from Boston University, and worked in the speech recognition and natural language processing space for almost 10 years at BBN Technologies and Nuance. Moving to Yahoo in 2005, she was enlisted into machine learning for search advertising – to improve online revenue and user experience! She had the opportunity to work on the first Hadoop grid on Yahoo, and developed distributed machine learning for modeling user clicks. Rukmini joined Microsoft in 2010 to work on Conversational Understanding and built an early prototype of a personal assistant, she is excited to see parts of that project leaking into Cortana and other Microsoft efforts to bring conversational understanding to life on our devices! She moved back to search advertising in 2012 and runs a fast paced, innovative team committed to making the Bing advertising product better. The team manages algorithmic components of the search advertising stack, from core NLP efforts for query and ad understanding, to machine learning of signals to incorporate into an ad auction, and managing the game theoretic aspects of the auction itself.

* We use an inclusive definition of "woman," and we welcome trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people (language taken from the Center for Diversity).