Meet the Team


Dr. Shoukat Ali

CEO and Founder

Shoukat has a unique mix of practical and scholarly activities in machine learning, big data, and academia. He has taught at Purdue, Missouri S&T, and UC Davis. He also worked at some of the largest graph problems in industry at Intel and IBM Research before moving to Elastica in Silicon Valley where he led the data science team in various machine learning problems in the context of cloud security. After Elastica’s successful acquisition, he co-founded MiddleScholars with Anjum to solve some of the fundamental problems in higher education.


Dr. John Morrison

European Academic Adviser

John is a full professor at Department of Computer Science, University College Cork, Ireland.  He is also the founder and director of the Centre for Unified Computing, a co-founder and co-director of the Boole Centre for Research in Informatics, and a co-founder and co-director of Grid-Ireland. John is a Science Foundation of Ireland Investigator award holder and has published widely in the field of Parallel Distributed and Grid Computing. He has won and managed more than 25 Million euro in research funding.


Dr. Anjum Anwar

Director of Medical Education and Co-Founder

Anjum is a Fellow in the Department of Anesthesiology, Pain and Perioperative Medicine at Stanford doing advanced training in medical education in anesthesia. She received her anesthesia training at the university hospitals of the Trinity College Dublin, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Pakistan. Her teaching experience spans several hospitals spread over three continents and as many cultures, giving a certain depth and breadth to her perspective that she is finding very useful in her own startup where she directs the product development to ease the pain of busy doctors who have to balance didactics with patient-centered learning.


Dr. Rolf Riesen

Product Advisor

Dr. Rolf Riesen is the lead architect for the multi operating system (mOS) project at Intel. He has twenty-five years of experience in researching, developing, and deploying systems software for massively parallel systems. His career started at Sandia National Laboratories and the University of New Mexico (UNM) where Rolf worked on lightweight operating system kernels, the Portals message passing interface, system modeling and simulation, and fault tolerance for extreme-scale systems. He has taught at UNM and advised graduate and Ph.D. students. Rolf has over 50 peer-reviewed publications and is an active member of various program committees. He is also a subject area editor for the journal Parallel Computing.


Dr. Laura Mazer

Lead Advisor, Continuing Medical Education

Laura Mazer is a surgical resident at Stanford University. She has a longstanding interest in education, and has completed a two-year Surgical Education Fellowship during her residency training. She is also completing a Master’s degree in Health Professions Education and is the recipient of several local and national teaching awards. She enjoys creating novel simulation-based training programs, and is particularly interested in teaching and assessing non-technical skills. She is excited to be a part of the MiddleScholars team, working to leverage technology to decrease cognitive load and improve learning.


Aejaz Zahid

Director of Product Development

Aejaz hold degrees in engineering (McGill and Surrey) and Human-Computer Interaction (Trinity College, Dublin) and is a Sloan Fellow in Innovation & Global Leadership at MIT, from where he recently graduated with an MBA degree in Innovation & Technology Management. He has been involved in numerous international research and development projects in the fields of assistive technology, educational technology, and accessibility, among others. In his most recent position as head of research and innovation at Mada (Qatar Assistive Technology Center) he led teams that brought to market over 25 new or localised Assistive and Educational Technology products.


Ali Hashmi

Data Scientist

Ali Hashmi is a data scientist in love with machine learning, natural language processing and corpus linguistics. Ali graduated from MIT Media Lab with an MS degree. Prior to MIT, Ali was a McCormick Scholar at Medill and a Knight Fellow at the Globe Lab, Boston Globe. He also received an MSJ degree from Northwestern University and a BS degree in Computer Science from the University of Western Ontario. He worked as a software architect and development manager for Bell Canada for more than a decade, and still continues to consult for Bell.


Dr. Adam Hackett

Data Scientist

Dr. Adam Hackett is an expert in the application of mathematics to the study of complex systems and networks. His research is multidisciplinary and is generally concerned with the interplay between the structure of networks and the processes that occur on them. He has published several articles in leading physics journals and computer science conference proceedings. At MiddleScholars, he is currently investigating the application of graph theory to the development of personalized learning networks. He holds a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Limerick, Ireland.


Marium Kamal

Personalization Research Scientist

Marium is pursuing a Masters in Education at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. Some of the elements that are an integral part of her teaching pedagogy include assessment for learning, student metacognition, peer assessment, inclusion, differentiation, inquiry based learning and feedback. She is working with mixed ability students and cannot be any more excited to be an essential part of the personalization team at MiddleScholars.