A virtual internship focused around software engineering
I enjoyed the virtual experience quite a lot. It was something very different to what I'm normally used to so it was really fun. It was focused on software engineering which really appealed to me as it is something quite different and while I was learning more about it, I really started to love it as I started to draw connections between software engineering, daily life and the world of economics, which is the field I aspire to enter.
I did not feel very valued by the company but I really did not expect to be valued as the internship was quite short and it was mainly focused on gaining skills pertaining to software engineering, rather than being a useful asset to the team. As I was learning skills, it would be ludicrous of them to suggest working alongside the team as these were new skills to me and to most of the people taking this opportunity.
I did receive quite a bit of guidance. After tasks, feedback was given and I found this quite useful. However, it was general feedback that was given so it was essentially like looking at a mark scheme. I found that this felt quite impersonal and I was unable to get full feedback on how to improve. I would have benefitted more from someone seeing my work and giving specific feedback on certain areas rather than the approach that they took but this of course may not be feasible due to the large volume of interns.
I think that the skills I developed will definitely be useful. There are many ways in which software engineering can be used to enhance the field of economics and a thorough understanding of software engineering will thus help to improve my understanding of economics. For example, I'll have a greater understanding of how models are created on computers so when refinements need to be made to the models, I will be more capable of doing it than I was before.
I think that the virtual experience was extremely well structured. They started from a very basic level and built it up such that even those that had no prior knowledge of software engineering were able to develop a greater understanding by the end of the experience. Furthermore, the tasks set in place really helped me to understand the content and I feel like the content was delivered in a very effective manner, which helped when dealing with more complex topics.
I cannot really answer this question because it was a virtual experience.
I think that the company did invest a lot in me. This was mainly through the great amount of knowledge that they passed on to me and in the way that they trained me to understand the world of software engineering a lot more. This is of course so important in today's society, where computers and programs are all around us and all different fields depend on such. Furthermore, the software engineering tasks also taught me a great deal of resilience and never giving up, even when it seems impossible.
I do not think that the experience was that great in helping to understand what it would be like to have a full time role with the company for many reasons. The first is that the experience was more for gaining skills than immersing yourself in a work place. Secondly, the tasks that I was made to do were much simpler than that which actual employees would be asked to do. Furthermore, it was a virtual experience and I did not really get to be in the office and finally, this department is only a small part of what the company actually does.
I think that the experience did help me to understand company culture. This was through two main ways. The first was during the presentation of the first task, they talked about their company values and the culture they wish to uphold. These values really set the tone for the rest of the internship. The second way was more implicit and it was through the tasks. Often, when scenarios were given, they made reference to the company values that they follow, which helped solidify my understanding of the company culture.
The content was somewhat valuable in helping me decide on my career path. I always knew I wanted to go into economics but I think that this made me realise that there are many different aspects within economics and I could be doing software engineering alongside economics if I look in the right places. Therefore, it has made me look into more specific jobs and what exact roles I would be doing so I guess it is currently indirectly helping me to decide on my future career path.
I did not expect to be paid or reimbursed expenses because it was more of a learning experience.
There were not such opportunities, as would be expected from a virtual internship.
There were no networking opportunities.
I actually did find out about activities that employees could get involved in outside work. This was at the end of the internship and I actually emailed in an inquiry asking this alongside other questions I had. It was nice to hear that they encouraged other activities to lighten the burden on employees' mental health. Depending on the certain office you go to, there will be a different range of activities you could do but there will mostly be something for everyone.
I would definitely recommend this virtual experience to anyone, even those who are not interested in software engineering. Through this experience, I developed skills that I did not have before and have found ways to link such with the field I aspire to go into. The world is becoming increasingly involved in technology and software such that it is important to know about it, no matter what industry you go in to. The internship was not too difficult either as the harder tasks were slowly eased into.