Meet Khumari

Khumari was born and raised in Afghanistan, a country where 85 percent of Afghan females have no formal education. After moving to Florida, she enrolled at Hillsborough Community College and earned her Associate’s Degree with high marks. She later enrolled at the University of South Florida where she is a Computer Science & Engineering major and will graduate in 2020.

Khumari Barakzai Pega software architect

Khumari Barakzai

Pega Software Engineer

Tampa, FL


  • Dream Vacation

    A yoga retreat in India

  • Alma Mater

    University of South Florida

  • Career Objectives

    Continue to develop my Pega expertise by becoming a CSSA and PCBA

Let’s start off by learning a bit more about your life prior to Pega. Where are you from originally and what is your educational background?

I was born and raised in Afghanistan, a country where 85 percent of the female population has no formal education. Working as a software engineer was hard for me to even dream of! Growing up in Afghanistan, I had to seek out education since girls were not permitted to attend school in most provinces. From an early age, I understood that education was a weapon of freedom and independence so I did everything I could to learn, no matter how difficult. Then, I took it upon myself to teach others in my community.

Fortunately for me, I did graduate from high school in Afghanistan and then moved to Florida six years ago. I enrolled at Hillsborough Community College and earned high marks which put me on track to receive my Associates Degree and enroll at the University of South Florida. At USF, I majored in Computer Science & Engineering.

What motivated you to learn how to use Pega?

I was actually first introduced to Pega through LEGERITY. They reached out to me about the opportunity to go through training to become a Pega Certified Systems Architect. I went through training and then was hired and placed by LEGERITY at a health insurance company.

I have loved working on the Pega platform since my first day of my training. As a developer, I found this tool very powerful for managing business processes. Changes can be implemented quickly because there is no need to write code from scratch. This produces amazing results for businesses!

"From an early age, I understood that education was a weapon of freedom and independence so I did everything I could to learn, no matter how difficult."

How has Pega shaped or impacted your career?

In Afghanistan, I was teaching different subjects for children and adults in my community and enjoyed teaching Math the most.  When I moved here, I tutored Math at HCC College Academic Success Center. It was challenging to tutor college students, but that's what I wanted. I wanted the pressure to improve my skills quickly. 

The same goes for my career working on the Pega Platform. There is so much to learn that  challenges me and takes me out of my comfort zone to use my logic. Pega opened the door for me into the world of technology; now it's my turn to work hard and enjoy the challenges of keeping up-to-date on the platform so that I can take my career to the next level.

What message or advice would you give to anyone who is considering a career as a Pega Developer?

Don’t hesitate to go for your Pega certification, it really is a life challenging experience. The Pega Platform makes it easier for developers and business people to work together so there will  always be opportunities to build a great career for yourself.

How is Pega changing the organization where you work?

I haven’t been in my current role for that long but I can tell you that the impact of Pega on the organization is huge. The changes that we are making in the processes and workflows are both efficient and rapid. The code is already there to implement the requirements needed and that gives more time to employees so that they can focus on what the customer wants rather than being bogged down on the technical side.

"Don’t hesitate to go for your Pega certification, it really is a life challenging experience."