Farewell Summer Interns
Good luck Matt, Eddie, Alec, and John!
Aug 26, 2020
It’s time to say farewell to our first cohort of virtual interns! We wish Matt, Eddie, Alec, and John the best as they start the school year.
Even though this summer’s internship program was remote, we tried to maintain the spirit as much as possible. The most significant thing about Asymmetrik internships is that they are highly technical – no coffee runs or busy work here! From Day 1, interns are placed into project teams and often work on software already in production and in use by end users. This way, they can see exactly how the software life cycle works, and gain valuable real world experience.
We recently caught up with our interns to see what they had to say about their virtual internships:
Matt Wong, UMD, College Park
Matt is a New York native who loves biking, running, hiking, playing violin and piano, and video games (League of Legends, Warzone, Overwatch and Apex). A grad student in Computer Science, Matt wanted to learn how to develop a full stack web application with cutting edge frameworks and libraries. He says that he definitely got what he was looking for and was excited that he was able to work with modern technologies like Angular and MongoDB.
“I found that working on a large scale project and learning new technologies and techniques in web development was challenging, but rewarding. There are so many components in building an application and just being able to understand all the components and design choices involved took a bit of time.
I was surprised by how helpful and nice everyone on the team was. No matter what questions I had (basic or complex), they were able to give really clear and concise answers and feedback which helped me to grow to be a better software engineer.”
Eddie Nieberding, UMBC
Eddie is a junior at University of Maryland, Baltimore County majoring in Computer Science. When he’s not coding, Eddie enjoys cooking, playing board games (Catan is one of his favs), and running. On his project, he was excited to work with Typescript, MongoDB, and Git – technologies that were brand new to him.
“I learned SO much! Almost everything I interacted with, I had to learn. I also wanted to learn how software engineers developed. It was cool to see how tickets work and creating pull requests.I was surprised at how much goes into making a website. There were so many different working parts with different languages and libraries.
I found that Git was hard to grasp at first but was easy once I understood it. It was difficult to understand asynchronous programming and using observables. The most difficult concept was unit tests. They are completely different from what I am used to programming.”
Alec West, UMD, College Park
Alec is a talented musician (electric bass and string bass) who is entering his senior year at University of Maryland, College Park. This was his second summer interning with Asymmetrik. Of this year’s virtual experience, he says, “I was most surprised by how well working from home went. It’s important to be able to get help and talk with your team, especially as an intern.
I found it challenging to ask for help sometimes…thankfully, setting up Google Meets was very helpful. At prior internships, I worked on some meaningless ‘intern projects’, but here, getting to work with a real team gave me the experience I wanted.
This summer a lot of tasks involved increasing security and modifying deployment procedures, as we ported the project to ECS. Technologies new to me that I got to work with include Docker, Privoxy, and Terraform. I had heard of some of these technologies before, and it was nice to finally get to learn and use them.”
John Wilbur, UNC
John is a freshman at University of North Carolina majoring in Mechanical Engineering who swims and builds robots in his spare time. He says he was genuinely surprised at how much software work he was doing this summer. “I figured an intern out of high school with no knowledge of software would have been stuck running coffee and bringing food to people but I was able to actually work on projects.”
As a recent high school graduate, John found that he had to learn a lot of new software technologies on the job. Though it was intense, he enjoyed the challenge, and especially liked breaking things while testing and looking for bugs.
“I worked in the UI to check for bugs and such. In all of these projects, the technology I used was the web app. A lot of times I would just try to break things in the web app, try to find the error code and see if that was supposed to happen, for my first 2 projects I also wrote test plans and web app walkthroughs to help customers.”