The 2020 Summer Interns share what they loved most about their SEP experience.

Name : Julia Gibson

Title : Business Intern

"I remember emphasizing during my interviews that I wanted to learn how to solve a problem without step by step instruction or a definitive answer. My education has revolved around maintaining an impressive GPA by providing correct answers on assessments. I can confidently say that, through my time with SEP this summer, I have learned how to efficiently work through open-ended projects where I determine what the best answer or solution is. This freedom is intimidating at first, but once I finally accepted that there is no specific answer, I was able to discover different avenues to solving problems. I have loved my time here at SEP and have gained many valuable skill sets. I am thankful for the BizOps team for pushing me out of my comfort zone while providing a helping hand when I needed it."

Name : Jaala Naylor

Title : Business Intern

"This summer, I learned how to fail. It might seem odd to say “Failure is what I loved most about this summer”- and the perfectionist part of me will always shy away from any form of “accepting” failure. By redefining what failure meant to me, I learned how to accept trial & error as a natural process for problem solving. Through failure, I learned and grew- much more than I would have if I had completed a series of “perfect success projects” (which ultimately would have left me feeling unchallenged and unsatisfied). Above all, I couldn’t have learned this crucial concept without the awesome people I worked with this summer – they all pushed me to do my best. They gave me the support I needed in order to try, fail, and try again."

Name : Courtney Masters

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"This summer, I did not only gain coding experience, but I learned what it’s like to work in a professional setting with people who love what they do. I so appreciated how my team members were willing to take the time to walk me through solving a problem, teach me a new way of doing something, or gently correct mistakes I had made. I felt as if I had freedom to both fail and learn, while still being a contributing member of the team. I also enjoyed learning about our client and getting to closely observe the decision-making process that many team leaders go through regularly. Overall, I had a great experience with SEP and I’m grateful for all I’ve been able to learn this summer."

Name : Mark Roebbelen

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"I loved getting a more holistic understanding of software engineering that couldn't be found in school alone. Whether it was spending countless hours pairing with me (and having saintly patience for my endless newbie questions), sending readings my way, or coming to my house to hand-deliver a book, my team acted with true care for my personal development that fills me with gratitude and a desire to pay their example forward. I went from zero knowledge of Angular and other technologies in our project tech stack to being able to deliver real features for a prestigious client that will be used by thousands of people, and that's entirely because of the awesome mentorship of the "Mogwai After Midnight" team. Thank you for giving me my first taste of working in software and for making this an awesome summer!"

Name : Michael Lee

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"My new favorite phrase is "drinking from a firehose." If I had to sum up my experience at SEP as succinctly as possible, it would be with that phrase — and I mean that in the best way possible. Everything about this internship has been invaluable to me, and I felt like I was absorbing information non-stop for 3 months. From dropping into a massive codebase, familiarizing myself with a professional workflow, actually seeing what proper testing looks like, to simply meeting each member of a large team — there was always something to be wrapping my brain around. The combination of the work I was doing and the way my team treated me didn't make me feel like an intern — it made me feel like a real engineer. I can't express my gratitude enough for this opportunity to work at SEP and meet so many wonderful people."

Name : Lisa Lo

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"I’ve learned about process, business, programming, AI, writing and so much more; however, what I’m most grateful for is how supportive everyone is. As someone who was initially scared of everything and everyone, my time here has returned my curiosity, my fascination with programming, and my love for learning. My team members were always happy to share their experiences and knowledge (both technical and random) with me, but also showed it's okay not to know things; it's meant to be a learning process.They trusted me to do meaningful tasks which I didn’t even trust myself to do, supporting me all the way through. Finally, they reminded me to be bold and that my opinions mattered. Thank you everyone at SEP!"

Name : Kendall Miyakawa

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"Stepping into the middle of a massive project with a giant codebase was difficult, but my team did a great job of attempting to get me up to speed - a task that is a nearly impossible when no one team member has all the answers. I loved reaching a point of understanding on the project where I was able to contribute valid and valuable input toward design decisions here and there.  It was a great experience to be virtually surrounded by a stack of senior engineers who had each come from different combination projects and therefore brought a variety of solutions to the table.  At the same time, I heard nearly everyone on the team at one point say "oh, I don't know" - a humble reminder to me that you never stop learning.  I'm thankful to have caught a glimpse into the world of SEP, it's monumental progress, and the lives of my team members."

Name : Clayton Detke

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"I learned so much this summer, most of it being programming knowledge and skills, but the one thing that I truly appreciate learning the most is the importance of working with great people. I've worked on a lot of different software teams in the past, and it's always been perfectly fine, but in hindsight, I've really been missing out, as it makes such a major difference in a way that I honestly can't put into words.  Put simply, being able to work alongside folks that are such honest, good people has been fantastic.  This summer I was almost always finding out reasons why the members of my team are such great people, and the entire experience has been both humbling and eye-opening, making me strive to become a better person, programmer, and teammate.  To everyone from my team this summer, thank you all so very much for quite literally being the best software team I've ever been apart of."

Name : David Nguyen

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"Working with the Emojineers team at SEP has provided me a lot of insight into software consulting as well as the overall software industry. A few new things that I really liked learning a lot about was the development process in an Agile Sprint environment as well as the multitude of utilities built into Spring Boot! In addition to that, I was able to get a great perspective on some collaborative approaches such as paired programming and mobbing! One particular moment that I absolutely love from this past Summer was being able to meet most of my team in person during a special bratwurst cookout! I got to try a variety of brats including my two new personal favorites: mac & cheese and teriyaki! I really appreciate every single person on my team for showing me the ropes around our project's massive code base and want to thank them from the bottom of my heart for providing me such a great experience despite the unusual circumstances! They all know who they are! I would like to thank them for making my internship what it was! They all helped me ascertain what I want in a software career!!"

Name : Will Graham

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"I have a bad habit of moving too fast when working on a project. I move on from things that seem finished but have several glaring problems that would be apparent if I took the time to look for them. I've been working on slowing down when I work and SEP has given me an amazing opportunity to try and match someone else's pace. I've worked with git before, but never in a capacity that actually required me to go through a peer review or pipeline testing. At the beginning of the summer, I would consistently forget to run tests before committing new changes, especially if I thought they were too small to have caused problems. Now I make sure to run the tests even if I've only changed a single line. I love that SEP not only gave me the chance to improve myself, but created an environment where I had no other choice but to improve myself."

Name : Dane Acena

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"During this unprecedented summer, I am fortunate to work with an amazing team of interns tasked to dive deep and draw up ways to enhance Bluetooth pairing process and user experience on mobile applications. It is quite a unique experience compared to other internships. This internship was also unique in the way that I was place in the team at its inception and not in an already existing one. The problem was open-ended enough that we were provided a blank canvas to ideate and discover solution. I had the chance to learn and apply various skills such as design thinking, software development, prototyping, and mob programming. I was also able to hear and learn from other SEPeers and teams about the what, how, and why of their projects. Overall, I had a truly wonderful internship and very grateful for this opportunity."

Name : Lakshmi Galla

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"This summer I worked with a team of interns to come up with a better Bluetooth pairing experience for a mobile app. Although I was initially intimidated by how open-ended the project was, I am glad I got this experience because it enabled me to problem solve with minimal directions on what to do. I liked how we as interns were allowed to self-organize and have an equal say in the project. This was also my first time working remotely with a team and I am pleased with how well we were able to work together despite some initial challenges. Throughout this summer, I got to learn software development practices such as mob programming, app wireframing, and concept mapping. I am very grateful for everything I got to experience through this internship."

Name : Nicole Selig

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"Unique situations lead to unique opportunities. Unlike other interns who stepped into pre-existing projects, I had the pleasure to enter a project at its inception as a member of a self-organizing team. Throughout my time at SEP, I learned how to collaborate and communicate effectively while working remote. I learned that not only is 'Remote Mobbing' a thing, but a very powerful thing with the right mindset. In 10 short weeks, we went from not knowing anything about Bluetooth technologies or iOS development (or each other), to actively developing a full-fledged prototype and presenting our findings to a real client. I learned how to embrace uncertainty, roll with the punches, and suck at something new. I had personal moments of triumph where I solved a tough coding problem, kicking my imposter syndrome to the curb. I learned so much from my teammates, and I hope they learned something from me too! I also very much appreciate the mentorship that SEP leadership provided to me. I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to experience SEP, it's wonderful culture, and inspiring professionals."

Name : Jesse Gallardo

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"This summer was certainly interesting as I was going in without any internship opportunities so I was very excited to learn that SEP was willing to provide me one. My main goal for this internship is to get a better understanding of the software engineering field and that was certainly fulfilled. I was able to work on a project with a team and through my co-workers at SEP, I was given a better understanding of what a software engineer career path looks like as well. Overall, I enjoyed working with my team and meeting people at SEP."

Name : Blake Steel

Title : Software Engineer Intern

"This Summer I was given the opportunity to join SEP's Xtern team after mine fell through, and I'll be eternally grateful. I learned a lot from the people surrounding me. My teammates created a welcoming environment that anyone would be happy to be involved in; the SEP leadership gave many opportunities to exert the skills I have and to grow the skills I don't; and the other SEP individuals I interacted with were always so helpful, from the intern lunches to the other project demos, I never felt left behind. A great experience, and one that I would suggest to other aspiring software engineers, even if you didn't lose your first internship."