Sharjeel MustafaComputer science co-op student Sharjeel Mustafa found practical application of his classroom learning during a work term with a tech start-up.

Academic foundation helps student thrive in co-op position

Sharjeel Mustafa’s journey through the practical application of his studies helped unveil a clearer direction for his future: exploring the realm of machine learning.

A computer science student, Mustafa completed his co-op term at Swift Medical, a start-up tech company specializing in wound care management technology for health-care enterprises. Given the dynamic nature of start-ups, he took on a variety of projects and large-scale tasks.

“During my co-op term at Swift Medical, I was exposed to working in industry research and machine learning and had opportunity to work on projects that encompassed the data pipeline. Given the fast-paced and tight-knit nature of start-ups, I was treated as a full-time employee and given freedom and responsibility over my projects,” says Mustafa.

“Thanks to the support of my supervisor, I was able to take on large-scale tasks and make significant contributions in the form of two research papers and a prototype for a multi-million-dollar initiative.”

Rishabh Gupta, Mustafa’s supervisor at Swift Medical, says his work reflected a rare combination of technical expertise and analytical acumen: “He demonstrated a deep understanding of complex data science concepts and applied innovative methodologies to derive insights that significantly enriched our understanding of wound care.”

Mustafa credits the technical knowledge he gained in the classroom with helping him excel in his co-op work term.

“My academic training in SLQ, Python, data structures, and statistics gave me the necessary background to work on these projects,” he says. “This, coupled with the mentorship I received, greatly supplemented my abilities and motivated me to continue my focus on machine learning.”

Mustafa says the influence of his work-term at Swift Medical cannot be overstated, inspiring him to continue exploring the world of machine learning.

“My co-op experience significantly altered my post-academic goals and motivated me to further pursue studies related to machine learning,” he says. “At the conclusion of my work term, I immediately decided to join a machine learning project for my fourth-year research project and have taken up another information extraction project at school to continue working in the field.”

Mustafa received a Co-op Rising Star Award for his time at Swift Medical.

“He embodied the qualities of a dedicated and innovative professional,” Gupta says. “He leaves an indelible mark on our team, and we are confident that his future endeavours will continue to reflect the same level of excellence.”
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