Somit’s Story: Learning and Growing with Pratham

Somit Gupta has lived in Seattle for seven years and has been volunteering his time with Pratham for most of them. A data scientist working on Microsoft’s Analysis and Experimentation team, Somit grew up in Shimla, a hill town in the north of India. Here is his Pratham story, in his own words.

From Somit Gupta:

“First, it’s important to say that I was fortunate enough to get a good education as a child. As my life has progressed, I’ve become passionate about doing my part to make sure that others have a similar opportunity. Education is more than just schooling and everything that comes with it – it’s crucial to the wellbeing of every individual.

‘Every child in school and learning well’ is Pratham’s motto, and the organization lives up to it. While school enrollment in India is very high, the quality of education is poor, and Pratham does a great job measuring that year-over-year. Pratham has not stopped at just showing the problem – it has also undertaken massive interventions to improve the quality of education by working in partnership with the public school system and influencing it to work towards having a larger impact in improving the quality of education.

What I really appreciate about Pratham is that it works on scale, and does it efficiently. And the fact that it is data-driven. Being involved with an organization with a large impact and scientific methods is very exciting.

I had read about the ASER reports in newspapers for a long time, and I was very impressed by Pratham’s ability to present an annual report card on the state of education in India. It made headlines in newspapers and influenced public opinion and policy towards better education outcomes. I looked up Pratham while I was in Seattle and was glad to find the Pratham Seattle chapter – so, I took the opportunity to volunteer.

Over time, I have learned more about Pratham from various talks and a site visit in Kabir Nagar, Delhi. I was even further impressed by the scale and efficiency at which Pratham works, and how well it is able to use data to make decisions. That, and the vision of every child in school and learning well, keeps me involved.”

If you’re interested in participating in Pratham Seattle’s Young Professionals group, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

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