International Women’s Day with Hélène Armaos

Hélène Armaos

Senior Data Scientist, CognitionX

What do you do?
My name is Hélène Armaos, I am a French native, senior Data Scientist working in London at CognitionX. I am working on various data-science projects, such as NLP and recommender systems.

What is something about yourself that many people are surprised to learn?
I am currently in my third year of my bachelor’s degree in Psychology. I am passionate about the subject and decided to start as a hobby on the side.

Describe yourself in three words
Perseverance, Well-Being, and Passionate

What advice would you give to a young woman getting into tech?
I would tell her to stand up for herself. It’s important to set up your limits and communicate if you feel that someone has overpassed them. It can be difficult to be assertive and be confident in a male-dominated environment, but at the end of the day, you have to if you want to work in tech.

Have you experienced discrimination as a woman in tech? Tell us about it.
I have experienced discrimination regarding my abilities and also in terms of bonding with co-workers in one of my previous jobs. For example, I was installing Linux and one of my male co-workers said, “She will play with it for a day or two, and then she will go back to Windows”. Or I was put aside of the conversation because the subject was not right for a woman to hear. I also went to a conference with my team and was going to a women’s panel, and one of the guys said, “They will talk about their menstruations”.

I regretted not communicating about it and feeling ashamed or different in silence. I think it’s important to express your feelings so that your co-workers learn what they are doing wrong.

What do you do in your workplace to challenge gender norms?
I always try to communicate if I feel like I have experienced gender discrimination or someone else had. It does not matter if it’s a man or a woman; anyone can experience it in the tech field. Luckily, we have a good gender parity in my job, and I don’t have to do that!

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