A personal timeline of errors and achievements

Hi I’m Shirish and this timeline charts the experiences, both grand and tiny, that have shaped who I am today.

2008: Big Interviews, Big Troubles: As student reporter, I interviewed two of Nepal’s most prominent figures: the Prime Minister and the President. I was horrified to discover that my compliment to the Prime Minister on writing an autobiography “nobody’s as big as you” was very likely misinterpreted, as he was famously tall. Ahh youthful naivete.

2010-2011: Sparking Innovation at TEDx: My friend and I co-organized TEDxKathmandu events two years in a row, to much public interest. Two sold-out large halls every year.

2011: Taking the Stage (and the Reviews) in Stride: I played a key role in Edward Albee’s “Ballard of the Sad Cafe.” While the reviews weren’t stellar (“Best part? When the power went out”), the experience remains an interesting chapter in my story. I’m not gonna give up on my Hollywood Dreams, UNIVERSE!

The same year (2011) I gave a 30-minute Barcamp presentation on a Nepali film posters, I’d been collecting them for half-decade at that point. [(https://prezi.com/xtigclcjiuc5/nepali-film-posters/)] just need to figure out a way to download my data from the website without paying them…

2009-2011: A Near-Miss with Educational Tech: Innovation beckoned! My friend and I campagined strongly for the OLPC project, a well-intentioned (and thankfully) rejected attempt to revolutionize education system, in Kathmandu. Read more here Link

2012: A Scorching Summer of Learning in India: The scorching Indian summer provided a backdrop for research with a consultant group working for MIT Mobility lab. Exploring five Indian cities alongside the Jaipur Foot project offered invaluable experience. A weeklong residency with a prominent Indian venture capital firm leader fueled my interest in ‘comparative’ entrepreneurship across regions.

2013: Study Abroad in Ghana: Spent seven eye-opening months in Ghana as a study-abroad student. Was able to use my technical know-how to setup custom-written social-media monitoring tool during my internship at the University of Ghana Accra’s Ethno-musicology department.

2014: Sky-high Internship: A Boston-based tech private equity firm internship led to being interviewed and hired by the firm’s current MD. He also mentored me career-wise in my early career.

2016-2017: Masters in Warp Speed: A two-year Master’s program in Computer Science completed at UMass-Amherst in a mere 14 months! All of that, without a drop of caffeine!

2017 (and Beyond): The Art of Fermentation: Started my fermentation hobby and a passion for experimentation, which continues to this day. I’ve documented my journey and lessons (here)[https://www.shirish.me/fermentland].

2018: Interviewing for the Unexpected: The interview circuit took some unexpected turns. Two separate interviews led to bosses one of who became a close associate of the British Prime Minister, and another who soon became a U.S. Congressman. Small world!

2020: A Pivotal Year: A trip to Nepal and Singapore just before the world changed. In the uncertainties and confusion of early-covid times, I decided to shift towards writing more professional essays, some of which you can find here.

2022 and Beyond: Perpetual Learning: The pursuit of knowledge never ends! Currently enrolled in the Certificate in Engineering Leadership program at UW-Seattle. Additionally, exploring creative pursuits with various art, dance, and crafts courses at Seattle Central College, making it my sixth university/college experience!

Shirish Pokharel, Innovation Engineer, Mentor

This is where all my quirky comments will go.