Hyderabad man triumphs over career hurdles with data science upskilling

Rakesh had some tough times exploring the corporate world, all while earning somewhere between Rs 10-15,000. In 2022, when things finally started working out, a series of unfortunate events took place.
Rakesh
RakeshExpress.

HYDERABAD: Rakesh, a 30-year-old data administrator in a private company, has a story similar to many early career professionals in India. He stumbled upon an upskilling opportunity that helped him take a significant leap in his career. Born in Hyderabad, Rakesh was raised by a single mother, who funded the education of her two children by selling vegetables. Rakesh went to a private school and finished his degree in BTech from Narsimha Reddy Engineering College, with a government scholarship.

“Despite nurturing an interest in the chemical field, I had to go for an EEE(Electrical and Electronics Engineering) degree after clearing EAMCET. After my degree, I had difficulties finding a job as I did not have any references from within the companies that were hiring,” Rakesh said.

Having no one to guide him on his career path, he started supporting his mother and younger sister by taking tuition and doing other part-time jobs. He tried to crack a few government jobs as well but in vain. In 2015, he got his first corporate job in a tech company but the salary was barely enough to sustain him. After many job switches and honing his skills, he landed a job with a major IT service provider. Rakesh had some tough times exploring the corporate world, all while earning somewhere between Rs 10-15,000. In 2022, when things finally started working out, a series of unfortunate events took place.

“It was a company working in the education sector. They were developing a one-stop-solution kind of applicat i o n f o r school children. They offered to pay me Rs 35,000, three times more than my previous salary. I was so blinded by the idea of getting a better-paying job that I failed to see that it was all just an experiment. They were not sure what they would do o n c e t h e y launched the app. Having worked there for six months, I received salaries for only three. They also did not provide me with a relieving letter due to which these six months reflected as a gap in my resume.

”After this, Rakesh managed to get a job in Cognizant and stayed there for four years. While working in product quality management, he came to know about data analysis. While the field was large and his skills limited, he still had a keen interest in the subject. He was just beginning to get hold of his work when his dream project got ported to another IT service giant and after failing background verification, he was denied the offer letter just four days ahead of joining. With EMIs piling up and no active income, Rakesh decided not to give up and continued to support his family with parttime tuition and earnings as an Uber driver.

In 2023, he decided to upskill himself and enrolled for a course in data science with Newton School in February 2023. Exactly a year later, he was appointed as a data analyst in AATPL with a 30% increase in his last withdrawn salary.

“I explored other schools as well but Newton was ready to listen to me and they understood my struggles. They even let me pay my fees through an EMI of Rs 5,762. I did a year-long course in data science, learning SQL, PowerBI and Python. So far I have only managed to learn the basics of Python but if I pay attention to it, I can even do advanced,” he said.

When asked whether he feels threatened by the youngsters who learn these concepts right at the college level, Rakesh told CE, “40% yes and 60% no, because I also have a six-plusyear experience working and coordinating with a team in a corporate setting. I have the advantage of the know-how to sustain myself in the corporate world.”

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