Celebrating Extreme's Outstanding Women in Engineering

I have such respect for people who enter a field knowing they will be in the minority, but who understand that in that role they will pave the way for future generations and their achievements. That is the ongoing accomplishment of every woman who is an engineer, whether they work at Extreme or at any other company. It is an effort we can and should all respect as an accomplishment on its own.

Within any successful company, diverse opinions, ideas and thoughts are celebrated and encouraged. Thoughts are not just spoken, they need to be heard as well. We can do that today and every day. In honor of International Women in Engineering Day, we are taking the opportunity to recognize three of our most outstanding engineers at Extreme.

Shilpa Swamy – Director of Product Marketing

Shilpa Swamy – Director of Product Marketing

What's been the greatest achievement in your career so far?

I would not want to call any one thing in my career my greatest achievement. I have taken many small steps and done a few good things that have led me to where I am today. A few achievements I am proud of are constantly pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I have had several transitions over the course of my career that I am proud of. I moved from engineering to product marketing, reset my career a bit by moving to a new country and even found new work during the early days of the pandemic after getting laid off from a job I loved.

What's the best piece of advice you were given from a female mentor in engineering?

Believe in yourself and trust your instincts. Learn to advocate for yourself like you would for someone you love dearly.

What's something you'd like to share with the next generation of women engineers?

Never be afraid of taking up space, of standing up for yourself and making difficult choices. Don’t pay attention to stereotypes -- they are designed to hold you back. And most importantly, support and elevate other women because that’s the only way we can all find ourselves in a world where we will be judged for our skills and not based on our gender.

Sweta Santuka – QA Engineer

Sweta Santuka – QA Engineer

What's been the greatest achievement in your career so far?

Getting back into the workforce after almost a decade is a scary thing for every stay-at-home mom. The willingness to accept the challenge of fitting back into the fast-paced, ever-changing corporate dynamics is a huge achievement. I had my fair share of rejections and in all honesty, every rejection was a blow to my self-confidence, but I didn’t give up. Instead of accepting those rejections as the outcome of my endeavors, I chose to evolve! If I must pick my greatest achievements in my career so far, it would be my perseverance to teach myself an entirely new skillset and the determination to prove to every non-believer that learning is not tied to any age or generation. In fact, the opposite is true. Learning helps bridge the gap between generations.

What's the best piece of advice you were given from a female mentor in engineering?

The best piece of advice came from a recruiter during my job search almost two years ago. She told me to “not limit myself to other people’s expectations.” I have tried to live by that advice not just in my professional but also personal life.

What's something you'd like to share with the next generation of women engineers?

Learn, learn, and learn!! Don’t stop adding to your skillsets. Keep evolving. Knowledge is indispensable. Become indispensable.

Xiaorong Feng – Staff SW Applications Engineer

Xiaorong Feng – Staff SW Applications Engineer

What's been the greatest achievement in your career so far?

I was part of the Aerohive acquisition by Extreme, so I’ve been working in tech for a long time. I helped develop ExtremeCloud IQ from the very beginning and now I’m the local expert in ExtremeCloud IQ license development. It’s been an amazing journey, and I’m so proud to have helped develop such an awesome product.

What's the best piece of advice you were given from a female mentor in engineering?

Always be self-confident. We have the same power and capabilities as men. Focus on your strengths and show the world how great you can be.

What's something you'd like to share with the next generation of women engineers?

Code can change the world! I love this work, and I love to put all our boundless enthusiasm and potential into it. No matter how big or small things are, day by day, you can become an expert in anything, like my colleagues and I have with code. I would also say that it’s important to believe in the power of confidence. If you do you will overcome one challenge after another, and you will change your world.

Thank you to these incredible women who took the time to share their stories with me and the world. Your experiences, work ethic, and commitment to excellence can help us cultivate curiosity in the next generation of female engineering talent and encourage them to follow in your footsteps.

About the Author
Nabil-Bukhari Headshot.jpg
Nabil Bukhari
Chief Technology Officer & Chief Product Officer

Nabil serves as the Chief Technology Officer and Chief Product Officer. In his role, Nabil leads the vision, strategy, execution and delivery of Extreme’s suite of differentiated products and technologies, driving an ever-improving experience for customers and end users to further the success of Extreme’s portfolio and accelerate innovation in the entire networking sector.

Full Bio