Overcoming Challenges to Achieve her Dreams
Asha Padmashetti, a Staff Software Engineer at IBM, embarked on an incredible journey that led her to pursue a Masters in Information Systems at Northeastern University. Throughout her path, Asha encountered numerous challenges, yet her unwavering determination and passion for her career remained steadfast.
From the start, Padmashetti had always aspired to pursue a master’s degree. However, her plans took an unexpected turn when she was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer during her second year of her bachelor’s program. This unforeseen news shook her career aspirations and turned her life upside down. Nonetheless, with the unwavering support of her family and the dedicated efforts of her doctors, Padmashetti successfully triumphed over cancer.
The road to recovery proved to be a daunting journey for Padmashetti. She faced physical weakness and mental exhaustion. Nevertheless, she refused to allow her career to take a backseat. Balancing her treatments and studies, Padmashetti continued to excel academically and completed her bachelor’s degree without skipping a semester. Following her graduation, she secured a position at Verizon where she worked for four yea rs before venturing to Germany to join Dresslife, a fashion e-commerce optimization startup.
While in Germany, the world was struck by the COVID-19 pandemic. Considering her pre-existing conditions, Asha made the difficult decision to return to her home cuntry of India. It was during this period, in the comfort of her home, that Asha decided to pursue her dream of earning a master’s degree. She applied to Northeastern University’s Information Systems program, enticed by the university’s experiential learning approach and its alignment with her career goals.
However, just prior to her journey to the United States, Asha encountered another setback when her cancer resurfaced, necessitating another surgery. Despite this additional hurdle, Asha refused to be deterred. She underwent the surgery while simultaneously continuing with her applications and preparations. “Looking back, I consider my decision to study at Northeastern as one of the best I have ever made, as it allowed me to excel both professionally and personally,” says Padmashetti.
Padmashetti holds the faculty, advisors, and staff at Northeastern in high regard, reflecting on her excellent experience with them. The professors fostered an engaging learning environment that encouraged classroom interactions.
“They were always available to assist with any professional or personal challenges I faced, making a significant difference in my journey,” Padmashetti says .
Enrolling at Northeastern played a vital role in Padmashetti’s ability to secure a co-op opportunity. She strategically selected coursework aligned with her interests and career goals right from her first semester. Through engaging projects and invaluable co-op advice, Asha secured an 8-month co-op position as a Senior Front-end Engineer at IBM.
In her current role at IBM, Padmashetti is responsible for delivering an exceptional experience to IBM Watson Health Assistant customers. Leveraging her expertise in design, software engineering, and front-end technologies; she translates customer feedback into valuable technological products. Her job necessitates independent workload management and timely delivery of results.
Presently, Padmashetti is engaged in various projects at IBM. She spearheaded the development of an end-to-end testing framework for Watson Assistant’s chatbot configuration tool, incorporating features directly requested by customers to enhance their customization experience. Additionally, as a co-op, she contributed to improving her team’s service efficiency by addressing tasks from the bug backlog.
At Northeastern, Padmashetti is pursuing a Master’s in Information Systems, a field that aligns seamlessly with her passion for problem-solving and creating meaningful solutions. Upon graduation, she envisions herself as a proficient engineer consistently advancing in her field. Her expertise in crafting outstanding user experiences, combined with the skills she acquired at Northeastern and in her professional environment, will empower her to tackle technological challenges and create remarkable customer experiences.
Padmashetti’s ultimate goal is to make a positive impact in her field of study, as she believes that software has the power to transcend borders and bring about positive change!