“Challenge yourself.” SmartBear interns share great advice for us all.

  September 27, 2022

SmartBear has a fantastic summer internship program. Each year, college students gain invaluable experience in their educational focuses, and work within other areas of the tech industry they may not have explored. This summer, we had the pleasure of hosting some extremely talented students in our Somerville, MA headquarters and in our fast-growing office in Wrocław, Poland.

We asked our interns to share what they learned over the summer and offer advice to future interns.

What did you work on during your SmartBear internship that helped advance your career goals?

I was surprised that I got to work on a large project that involved the entire company. This required me to gather information and feedback from a wide range of employees across several teams. It was challenging, but I got to know a lot of people.

This also gave me the chance to work on my assertiveness and decisiveness. It would’ve been impossible to implement all the suggestions I received from so many people, so it forced me to identify the most impactful ideas that would allow me to create something universal.

Weronika Czwojdrak UX, Wrocław, Poland

I worked on testing samples for Bitbar, SmartBear’s mobile app testing solution. Furthermore, I made a proof of concept for multi-finger gestures for an Android application. This allowed me to learn new programming languages and improve my skills with languages I had previous experience with. Throughout my internship, I worked with different technologies using Python, Ruby, C#, and Java, and I also got to learn about different mobile devices, which I’ve always found exceptionally interesting.

Maciej Lendzion Engineering, Wrocław, Poland

I was working with two other girls on the design system at SmartBear. This was a nice project, and I got to see which components make up such a system, and learn its basic structure. We were also given reading material around UX design that was informative and inspirational.

On this small team of three, I got the chance to be a leader. This was great because I realized that leadership was something I really liked, and it gave me the chance to develop some real skills in that area.

Katarzyna Kowalska UX, Wrocław. Poland

During your internship, did you learn anything that surprised you?

I wasn't tied down to a specific department. I jumped between the finance, marketing, and information systems (InfoSys) teams, which was a unique experience. This allowed me to pick up new skills, such as learning SQL from scratch in the second week of my internship, and then apply what I learned to different InfoSys projects.

It unexpectedly turned out to be quite fun and interesting, and the Infosys team was extremely supportive of a "newbie" like me. In short, I got to jump right into the thick of it all and work in an area that I had no prior knowledge of, but ended up finding the work fascinating.

Benjamin Zeng Finance, Somerville, Massachusetts

Throughout my internship at SmartBear, so much surprised me. I worked alongside several different teams within Marketing, like event management, copywriting, public relations, and design. I gained valuable insights into areas I had no prior knowledge of . While working closely with the Brand and Design team, I learned the importance of being adaptable. It surprised me how fast projects, ideas, and deadlines can change. You must always be ready for the unexpected and be flexible. With so many different opinions and ideas always coming at you, you have to be cooperative and prepared to create something new.

Ashley Pagliuca Marketing, Somerville, Massachusetts

Getting to build leadership skills was brand new for me. It’s not like I will become a leader in a job anytime soon, but it was nice to identify that interest, and to learn that my internal soft skills and thoughts around design are a great fit in a leadership role.

Katarzyna Kowalska UX, Wrocław. Poland

What advice would you give to other students to help them get the most out of their own internships?

Remember that being uncomfortable often means you're growing. The only way to gain new skills and expand your knowledge is to put yourself out there when you're starting something new. Working in a new setting with people you just met can be intimidating, but it's important to be open to new experiences. When you get projects and tasks that are brand new to you, it's important to keep a positive attitude and be ready to make mistakes. And don’t be afraid to ask questions!

Ashley Pagliuca Marketing, Somerville, Massachusetts

I would tell anyone starting their first internship to not to worry about starting this journey. There will be so many people willing to give a helping hand. Try not to become overwhelmed, and don’t let that feeling stop you from taking up a new challenge. It's the best way to learn new skills, build self-confidence, and derive satisfaction from your experience.

Maciej Lendzion Engineering, Wrocław, Poland

Don't be afraid of big challenges. Just because it's the beginning of your career doesn't mean you can't handle them. Also, spend a lot of time with other interns. It’s a great opportunity to inspire and energize each other.

Weronika Czwojdrak UX, Wrocław, Poland