APC Student Joins AWS DeepRacer Women’s League-ASEAN 2020

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APC Student races in The AWS DeepRacer Women’s League-ASEAN 2020.

By: Alexus Sabanal

Patricia Dorothy Manalang is a student of Asia Pacific College who was chosen to compete for The AWS DeepRacer Women’s League – ASEAN 2020, which is an all-women’s competition open for students of 17 years old and above with five participating countries, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, and Singapore at which the top three (3) competitors from each country are chosen to compete in the ASEAN level competition itself.

Her journey began in July 2020 when she received an email invitation from AWS Educate about two (2) competitions, BuildOn ASEAN and the AWS Deep Racer – Women’s League ASEAN. However, due to there being classes at the time. A team was unable to be formed for the former.

A few days were spent thinking before accepting the invitation or not due to her initial lack of knowledge in Machine Learning and mediocre programming skills. But eventually she chose to join either way, as she realized that the competition does not require any prior experience but would serve as an excellent opportunity to improve her skills even further as she has an upcoming subject in her upcoming term in the form of Artificial Intelligence.

Throughout the course of the competition, she spent her time reading on multiple articles as well as understanding different concepts that will help hone her skills even further, not just for the event but for her future as well.

Though she may have encountered some difficulties such as falling behind schedule, she continued to push on with the encouragement and assistance of a friend by her side.

“Honestly, I panicked as I realized that it was so close to the point that I even thought of not doing it anymore because I felt that I couldn’t perform well and would just put myself into shame. But after a few realizations and with the help of a friend – I was able to pick myself up and try again.”

In the end even though she did not triumph, what matters the most are the lessons she learned from it along the way.