INSTRUCTOR SPOTLIGHT: NOVEMBER 2021
INSTRUCTOR SPOTLIGHT: FEBRUARY 2022
November 2021 Instructor Excellence Award:
Digital Training Manager
As the Digital Training Manager at PwC’s Academy Middle East, Semih Kumluk designs, develops, and delivers custom-designed upskilling programs in Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Cloud, and Blockchain. Semih combines real-world business and digital experiences in FMCG, Telecommunications and Consulting with formal education that includes several university degrees and professional certifications. As a practitioner and consultant, Semih utilizes his data skills to interpret business data of nearly any shape and leverages emerging technologies to extract practical, strategic insights.
Semih believes in the power of the emerging technologies and is recognized for instructional excellence around the world in Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Emerging Technologies, and Design Thinking. With a personal mission of easing the lives of human beings both in terms of business and daily lives, his purpose is to increase usage of technology by increasing the awareness of it and developing skills in people who will create solutions from these technologies. “This is what drives me to continue upskilling more people every day," says Semih.
As Artificial Intelligence continues to grow and evolve rapidly, Semih has advice for professionals entering the field. “The first step in having a career in AI is mindset: being very aware about what AI is, how it works, and most importantly, what use cases you can relate to.” According to Semih, this will help you define opportunities and create an AI strategy. The next step is improving your knowledge, “What needs to be done to execute your AI strategy, how algorithms work, which algorithm is the best for your use case, and how to implement them,” says Semih. The final step is developing your skills. “At this level you master the algorithms, you gain hands-on experience and you become certified to showcase your skills to employers.”
Although many have had to make the big adjustment of teaching virtually in response to the impact of COVID-19, Semih already had experience conducting workshops virtually with participants from all around the world. “When all of our training programs moved online, I went back to remember and utilize my previous experiences.” Semih believes that one of the biggest challenges of online teaching is student engagement, so he explored many alternative ways of interacting with participants such as polls, quizzes, games, breakout rooms, etc. “We had to move quickly to convert our programs for online delivery. I played a pivotal role in sharing my experience and how to use the online tools with our trainers. I am enjoying it a lot --- mainly because it removes boundaries.” Since the beginning of COVID-19, Semih has delivered classes to participants based in the US, Jamaica, Europe, Sri Lanka, Singapore, New Zealand, and other locations around the world.
Semih is excited for what’s to come. “I am constantly upskilling myself and exploring new topics to teach and this excites me. I am on my way to delivering emerging technology topics such as Cloud, RPA and Data Privacy courses in the coming year.”
In his free time, Semih’s favorite activity is traveling to new countries.
November 2021 Instructor Excellence Award:
Hamid Aougab is an Agilist, system engineer, technology strategist and educator with 25 + years of experience. His teaching expertise includes Project Management, Agile, Scrum, and Systems Engineering. Over his career, Hamid has worked and consulted with government agencies, privately owned companies, and large multinational corporations.
Hamid’s formal education gave him a start in software and systems engineering. He moved into project management when he realized that good or bad project management practices were the biggest contributor to the success or failure of a project. He expanded his project management capability by moving into Scrum and Agile to help address the constant, rapid changes that impact most projects. “I am always looking to learn new things," says Hamid, adding, “I just recently got certified as a ScrumAlliance Educator, which means I can teach ScrumAlliance Certified Scrum Developers. I am very excited to help developers not make some of the mistakes I used to make. I am also planning to instruct SecDevOps to bring the entire process together."
Agilist, System Engineer,
A student of Hamid’s recently said, “I wanted to let you know that I am so grateful for having you as my PMP bootcamp instructor. Your class and the extra time you spent with us certainly paid off for me. I took the PMP Exam yesterday and passed with marks over target on all 3 domains. I couldn’t have done it without you. So, thank you, thank you, thank you! I appreciate you being so patient in helping me from reviewing my sample application, to answering questions via email, to conducting office hours late on Friday afternoons. You are simply the best! Sending you virtual chocolates, cigars, and a ton of praise!”
Hamid invests the time necessary both in and out of the classroom to ensure his students find success, however they define it — whether it's passing a PMP exam, delivering value on the job through critical project and program management skills, or fueling organizational transformation as a coach and advocate for the best practices that lead to repeated success. Hamid has touched countless students’ lives in his pursuit of excellence. More than an instructor – Hamid is an educator, a coach, and a mentor who is dedicated to guiding tomorrow’s workforce toward Project Management and Agile excellence.
When Hamid isn’t working or teaching, he enjoys spending time with friends and family, anywhere and anytime.