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This fearless female is breaking down gender stereotypes in the digital space

Photo Caption: While studying at Republic Polytechnic, Ms Tay co-founded Repave Tech LLP, a tech service company that provides robotic process automation services.

By Goh Hwee Koon

The technology industry may be male-dominated, but that is not stopping one tech-savvy lady with an entrepreneurial streak to aim for success in the digital world. 

Says Ms Tay Yi Lin, 20, an undergraduate at Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT): “My goal is to start a tech-related company that drives digital transformation and inspires more women to come aboard this industry.” 

Already, one of her crowning achievements is marrying her twin passions in technology and entrepreneurship. While studying at Republic Polytechnic, she co-founded Repave Tech LLP, a tech service company that provides robotic process automation services.

Currently, Ms Tay is pursuing a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Computing Science on a SIT Scholarship. The three-year direct honours degree programme is jointly offered by SIT and the University of Glasgow in Scotland.

Besides subsidised tuition fees, the bond-free scholarship also offers benefits such as access to the SIT Scholar Engagement programme which offers curated activities that present valuable development and networking opportunities. 


Building up her forte 

Ms Tay applied to enrol in SIT after seeing how relevant its curriculum’s modules are to society. 

“I have a keen interest in cutting-edge technology such as the Internet of Things (IoT) in Smart Nations and Machine Learning (ML), and SIT is the only university in Singapore that offers a specialisation in IoT,” she says.

She also appreciates SIT’s student-centred approach to applied learning. Through its Integrated Work Study Programme, she has had the opportunity to tackle real industry problems and create applicable solutions while gaining practical skills. 

“SIT’s curriculum provides opportunities to deepen our skills using in-trend technologies,” says Ms Tay. “For instance, I learnt about ML Algorithms and even built a Classifier (an algorithm that automatically categorises data into one or more of a set of ‘classes’).”

ML is the fusion of computer science and statistics in computer algorithms. It enables intelligent solutions – such as shopper recommender systems and self-driving cars – that go beyond the capabilities of traditional technological implementations. Classifiers help to improve the accuracy of ML Algorithms. 

“The future of ML is exceptionally exciting and I can see how having such a relevant skill set will be beneficial in my future,” she adds.


Staying resilient in pandemic times

Being self-reliant and with online resources aplenty, Ms Tay had no problems doing her research during the pandemic and easily made the transition from attending classes in person to online learning.

However, as a full-time student with an entrepreneurial background, she feels a level of uncertainty as the constant changes from the government and the groundworks affect work processes and do not offer a promising business outlook.

Nevertheless, she is undeterred from her goal of dispelling the notion that “the tech ground is a male-dominated industry, and that technical skills are hard to pick up and apply in the working world”.

She hopes to attend more networking sessions and workshops to help develop soft skills so that she can improve her leadership and communication capabilities.


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