When you ask Kevin Joseph what his life was like before becoming a Machine Learning Engineer, he will chuckle under his breath and tell you his tale as a bass guitarist who could cut bread really fast.
Kevin’s hometown of Marathon, Ontario, Canada, is a traditional gold, pulp and paper retirement community. While growing up there could have jumpstarted his career in mining, he said it was never something he considered. From the age of 16 to 26, he worked at a sandwich shop and spent his nights as a bass guitarist in cover bands and a jazz quartet.
Knowing he could apply his skills elsewhere, Kevin stepped out of his comfort zone and explored the world of data science and machine learning. He joined Kaggle, an online community for data scientists and machine learning practitioners, took a few courses and was hooked. After winning an online data science competition, he decided to go back to school and make a career out of it.
“I feel like there is something to say for getting a late start in schooling,” said Kevin. “Had I gone to college at 18 and had not experienced how hard getting by without an education was, I do not think I would have put nearly as much effort in. I achieved a perfect G.P.A. in my first semester and was fortunate enough to receive many grants and opportunities for research development throughout my college career.”
With hard work and determination, Kevin earned two degree double-majoring in statistics and computer science from York University and completed a thesis program on Illumination Modeling from Simon Fraser University. Upon finishing school, Kevin sought out opportunities for growth and development. He desired a strong sense of community, which he found in April of 2021 when he joined the Weir Motion Metrics (WMM) family.
At WMM, every day is a little different for Kevin and his team. He spends time in development meetings, supporting customer concerns and working on algorithm improvements. While he enjoys this about his role, he is most proud of the work he does that creates improved designs that not only help save energy, but help the company grow, all while working to create a more sustainable environment.
Having a positive impact on the environment through his work makes his efforts and accomplishments much more meaningful, he says.
A growth mindset and a willingness to admit your mistakes is something that Kevin shares with others just starting in the field.
“I feel supported to share my voice and grow when I admit my mistakes and learn,” said Kevin. “I am trusted to try new things and bring new ideas to the table. I have accomplished more here in one year [with WMM] than I think I would have at any other company.”
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