Intern Postak Shrestha
The key to a successful internship, is “getting access to the right talent and setting them up for success,” said Dan Ward, Vice President of Product and Engineering at MHC Software.
For a couple of years now, MHC has turned to the SciTech Internship Program to access the talent they need. Putting the interns hired front and center, Ward and his team give them the industry training necessary to help their careers flourish and grow.
“Interns are looking for experience and exposure. That’s why we really push to have them working on the production code that goes into our applications that our customers use,” Ward said. “They’re doing the job that they would be doing after they graduate and they’re helping us move those products forward. That’s what makes it successful for everyone.”
This fall, MHC offered this real-world opportunity to two students, Conor Hogan and Postak Shrestha.
Shrestha was first exposed to software development and testing while he was working in the travel and tourism industry. Looking for a career change, Shrestha enrolled at the Dakota County Technical College where he’s currently pursuing a degree in web programming.
Before starting his MHC internship, he said, “everything I learned was theoretical. We did some mock exercises, but that was it. Here, everyday I attend meetings where I get to talk with the developers and my leads. It’s different. We get real, practical experiences and real issues that we need to solve.”
Shrestha started his internship by studying MHC’s quality control processes. He then moved on to ramp-up testing and by collaborating with his colleagues and team leads, he’s now designing, updating, and executing test cases as well performing regression testing.
“I want to stay active, and I have that environment at MHC,” Shrestha said. “It’s an opportunity to grow and that’s what I expect from an internship.”
Hogan, a computer science major from the University of Minnesota, was as a software engineering intern and primarily worked on MHC’s Document Self Service project. During his internship, he fixed bugs, handled security issues and helped reformat front-end code.
Never stop learning
Given all that he’s been exposed to, Hogan said, “My biggest takeaway is how great it is to have a good group of coworkers around me to help me develop my skills as a programmer and learn new valuable skills.”
“I’ve gained a lot of practical experience,” Shrestha agreed. “I’m learning in a real work environment and working with my peers. I’m very grateful to MHC and that I got this opportunity. I’ve been treated very well by all my colleagues, team leads, and managers. They’ve been very helpful and they want me to learn and grow so I can become a qualified quality assurance professional.”
As this year’s interns prepare to move forward with their careers, MHC’s Executive Director of Software Engineering Ardaman Grewal sent them off with this advice, “Technology changes every six months, so don’t get too comfortable with one. If you know C# today, pick up Golang tomorrow. It’s going to change, so it’s important to keep up with it.”
Ward agreed, “For the team members we look for, whether they’re interns, architects, whatever level, that’s the key aspect. You have to be willing to embrace whatever the newest technology is that’s coming out. The ability to adapt is what will serve you best going forward.”
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