Perspective

The Power of Mentorship

February 10, 2021

LMI Staff

Employee Spotlight: Dr. Jennifer Blum

As a principal data scientist and machine learning engineer at LMI, Dr. Jennifer Blum supports the U.S. Army, Assistant Secretary of the Army (ASA) for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology. She has over 10 years of experience in satellite and radar systems data analysis, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence, supporting the Department of Defense and multiple intelligence agencies.

In this spotlight, Jennifer discusses the power of mentorship and how it propelled her career.

What are you responsible for as a principal data scientist at LMI?

I manage machine learning and data infrastructure needs for the U.S. Army, ASA. I write code for extract, transform, and load services.

You have accomplished a lot in your professional career. What is one thing that has helped you in doing so?

Finding the right mentor helped propel my career. Through mentorship, I expanded my network and discovered new opportunities in my field.

Who is your mentor?

My mentor is Mr. Ernest Smiley, chief data scientist at Kingdom Capital and founder and CEO of Georgetown Analytics and Technology. I met him during an interim assignment at an intelligence agency, and I found his career path, experiences, and views on life to be inspiring. Mr. Smiley spends a great amount of time advocating for people of color in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields by helping them network and find opportunities.

How has the relationship affected you on a professional level?

The relationship helped me grow my network, introducing me to various data professionals and exposing opportunities like the Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) STEM Conference.

What is the BEYA STEM Conference? How will you participate?

The BEYA STEM Conference is a community with over 10,000 members offering attendees (including K–12 and college students; corporate, government, and military professionals; and business and industry employers) three days of networking, job opportunities, learning resources, and award events celebrating excellence.

I will moderate the seminar panel: Artificial Intelligence Simplified: How Does AI Work and How Can It Be Utilized in Everyday Business? As the moderator, I will facilitate the discussion and offer my own experience and knowledge on the topic.

I am honored to participate in the BEYA STEM Conference. Through these opportunities, I give back to the next generation of professionals.

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