C. L. Melissa Diaz is an all-round BSc (Hons) Computer Science graduate specialized in Web and Mobile Computing, from IIT who has achieved much success following graduation. Melissa is currently employed as a Business Analyst at Digital Mobility Solutions Lanka Pvt Ltd (PickMe Engineering). She completed her internship at Flatorb Xeitiex Pvt Ltd as an Intern Web and Mobile Developer in the third year of the degree. Following are excerpts of the interview with Melissa, who shared his thoughts on her journey at IIT.
1. Can you give a brief introduction to yourself?
I am Melissa Diaz, the youngest in a family of three girls and was born in Bahrain. I am a Computer Science graduate from the University of Westminster and Informatics Institute of Technology Sri Lanka. I am currently working as a Business Analyst at Digital Mobility Solutions Lanka Pvt Ltd. I also specialize in WordPress, Google SEO Analytics, C#.Net, Android, Digital Marketing and Social Media Management.
2. Let us know a bit of your school education.
I studied at Good Shepherd Convent Kotahena and in English Medium. I obtained 9As for my GCE O/L examination and gained entry into the Mathematics Stream for my A/Ls. However I did not proceed doing A/Ls, instead I started my Foundation in Computing at IIT. During school I was a part of the debate team as well.
3. What made you decide to follow your higher education at IIT?
I chose IIT to do my Foundations as well as my Degree as it came highly recommended by my friends in the industry and by several alumni, who are working at companies, such as 99x Technologies, JKCS, and Google. It was definitely one of the wisest decisions I have made.
IIT provides a 4 year degree, in which we have to follow 1 year internship. It added more value and experience to the degree and it was such an amazing advantage.
4. How was your student life and experiences like at IIT?
Students’ life at IIT is not focused only on academics. IIT ensures that a student has a balance of both academic and non-academic exposure with various events such as stagecraft (a talent show), cutting edge (an exhibition) and many cultural events.
Facilities such as the library, computer labs gravely helped me during my years at IIT. The annual career fair with many leading companies where students are given the opportunity to sit for interviews and even get recruited for both permanent positions and internships is also very helpful.
I received the Dr.Gamini Wickramasinghe Gold medal in my foundation year and also had the opportunity of winning the same in my degree final year too.
5. What are your notable achievements at IIT?
I was awarded the Dr.Gamini Wickramasinghe Gold Medal in the passing out batch of the Foundation programme which I completed in 2014. Later on, I was able to bag the second gold medal from IIT in 2019, when I received Dr.Gamini Wickramasinghe Gold Medal as I graduated in BSc (Hons) Computer Science.
6. Has IIT shaped you for corporate success? If so, how?
Lecturers at IIT have constantly advised and motivated me to be where I am today in the corporate environment. The experience gained through the internship have benefited me a lot. The content in the degree covered the basics of what we need to know about and the current trends of the industry.
7. Can you describe the support you received from the staff and the faculty of IIT?
The staff and faculty at IIT have always been a constant source of support and motivation whether it was related to course content, project and coursework, facing interviews, and even when looking for an internship position and after.
8. What are your fondest moments at IIT?
My fondest moments at IIT have been spending time with friends and meeting friends who are an important part of my life and also working together with them before exams, coursework, and during various events at IIT.
9. What are your reasons to recommend IIT to students?
The main reason to recommend IIT to someone else would be that the degree programmes offered by IIT are well recognized around the globe. The internship opportunity along with the degree adds a lot of value when looking for a job as well as when continuing higher education.