My relevant contributions to my assigned tasks ended up being essentially the entire tasks. The pages that I build for the site were built on my own, not in a group environment with any other developers. My supervisor would give me a mock up of what he wanted the page to visually look like, and then he would let me get to work. We would bounce ideas off of each other for minor tweaks of things that either didn’t work the way he intended, or didn’t look the way he envisioned them to look, but the actual building and coding of the sites was all my work. The work environment was similar to what I expected. In the modern world, especially in the tech industry, office environments are becoming a lot more casual and relaxed compared to the old suit and tie norms. While I’m sure those types of environments still exist, I did not experience one during my internship. Moving forward, I am going to update my resume/LinkedIn profile with some information from my work during my internship, and depending on how long the world stays in this current COVID-19 state, try to go back to doing some freelance work at the company as well as start applying for long-term jobs this summer after I graduate.
Yesterday I found out some disappointing news. Amid these unprecedented times, the company I was interning/working for has run into some trouble with their manufacturers, which has led to some budget issues, and in turn budget cuts. My supervisor reached out to me yesterday and told me that they have to cut all contract and freelance work and that they will no longer be able to keep me working with them at the current time. In the end, I had a great experience that I am very thankful for, and would do it again in a heartbeat, but all good things must come to an end. I thanked my supervisor and mentioned that when the world stabilizes again, if they have anything available for full-time, part-time, or freelance work to reach out to me and I would love to come back if I am available. Hopefully, that day comes, and comes sometime soon.
Last week I finished my full 300 hours for my internship requirement. Overall, I loved it. I feel like I was getting more and more comfortable with the people that I was working with each and every day that I was there, and I was expanding my knowledge and ability to obtain more knowledge through research as well. With Coronavirus shutting down the in-person activity of offices, I had to finish my last 8 hours remotely, but it wasn’t a major inconvenience. As I have previously mentioned, I was offered a freelance position, and I was already going to be converting my work to a remote environment and this simply sped up the process. When transitioning to a remote work environment, I ran into some technical difficulties because the way the admin system is set up for the websites, you need to be connected to the office wi-fi to normally have access. After hours of back and forth with the IT department in California I was able to get VPN access to remotely connect to the website and continue on with my work, and everything has been smooth sailing with the rest of the transition.
I’m so excited. I’m nearing the end of my 300 hour requirement for the internship, and today I got some good news. My supervisor asked me what I was going to be doing after my internship ended and he offered me a freelance web development position to continue working for the company until I graduate and am able to find a long-term full-time job somewhere. At first I was a little hesitant to accept the position for a few reasons, but my supervisor was able to put my concerns at ease. Although I have been very content with making only $12 an hour for the duration of my internship, I felt this was a little low for me to continue passed the required hours, but then he mentioned that he had spoken with HR and they were willing to bump my pay up to $18 an hour for the freelance work. My other, more pressing concern, was that continuing the work on top of the other part-time job that I was working would interfere with my finishing my final semester strong. When I mentioned that I wanted to focus on school, my supervisor gave me a few other options, like waiting until the semester ended to start the freelance work, but the path we decided on would be for me to work only two days a week, and to do that work from home.
So this is my third reflection post, and I just realized that while I’ve been talking about the internship, I haven’t gone into specifics of any of the things I’ve actually done. For anyone who is reading this that doesn’t already know, I work with web development. This is exactly what I want to do with my career, and it feels good to spend hours writing code in an office environment compared to a school environment. So far I’ve restyled some pages that are currently on the website, as well as completely coded some brand new time sensitive pages. The reason I say time sensitive is because they have been related to specific events, for example, I’ve build a page that reveals a different sale for each day of cyber week, a page that fully displays which type of shipping is needed and when the latest date a customer can order that will have the package arrive before Christmas, and a page where the user can enter their email address and select the team they think is going to win the Super Bowl, and get an email with a discount if they are right (and even if they’re wrong, but don’t tell anyone).
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been starting to get very comfortable working at my internship. Everyone is friendly, there are a couple of people that have a desk close enough to me, in a sort of open area, where we can speak to each other at any moment without leaving our desks and I’m starting to get to know people. Overall, I’m not a super social or outgoing person and tend to be more introverted, so a majority of the conversations we have are not initiated by me, but everyone has been welcoming and are continuing to be friendly with me, even though I tend to be pretty quiet. In addition to the people that have desks near me, my supervisor consistently comes out of his office to check on my status with the projects I am working on, as well as just coming out to chit chat with either myself or other people around. There are a few other people in different sections of the office that walk around fairly often to socialize, and it has been a wonderful work environment.
For my internship, I have been working at a company called Transfor Digital Media Marketing, Inc. on their two websites, theCuteKid and CanvasPeople. Even though it’s still a new experience for me, I am loving every minute of it. So far, I haven’t had to work on anything that is too difficult or out of the realm of things that I already know how to do, but I know that day is coming soon. My supervisor has already mentioned a couple of projects to me that he wants me to take a look at sometime soon that are going to involve some code that I have never worked with before, but I am looking forward to doing the research needed to complete whatever projects he puts in front of me. Outside of the actual work that I am doing, I am very satisfied with the entire situation that I am in. The office is a very relaxed environment, only about a 20 minute drive from my house (with a parking lot, I’m so happy to not have to look for parking every day), has a kitchen that is usually stocked with little snacks and water available to anyone and has a table and chairs for people to relax and have lunch together. And for my favorite part, which may seem extremely minuscule, I have my own desk. I’m 25 years old, and I’ve been working essentially for the last 12 years, and I’ve never had my own desk or a specific place that was mine. I love it here.