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Fresh on the Boat― A Perspective from a New Intern

I put down the phone in shock. TAG-Ed, a Georgia program matching internship applicants to potential companies, informed me they had successfully found a start-up interested me. QASymphony wanted me as an intern, and I had essentially no prior work experience and no background in software development, QA, or coding. Under the strange combination of emotions in which excitement and anxiety prevailed, I accepted the offer with high hopes.

And I’m not disappointed. Fast forward nearly a week. Here I am, sitting at my makeshift desk, still floundering through some technical jargon (Scrum? Agile?? Kanban????). Despite the pesky terminology that still threatens to go over my head at crucial times, I’ve grown exponentially fond of this company and what we do. From day one, Jeff, Reed, and Elizabeth made sure I felt at home. While I was drowning under the JIRA and Java SDK and LDAP the first day, I had multiple people come up to me and make sure their poor intern had something to eat for lunch. I’ve received so many high-fives for my high school alma mater status and for my future prospects at Georgia Tech, and I’m always greeted with a friendly hello by everyone. The company morale is higher than I could have possibly dreamed. Everywhere I look, I see our cute logo stamped on a T-shirt across everyone’s chests. Talk about company spirit. When I require assistance, my team gives me their full attention. They also come by my corner with a quick check-ins. I have clear guidelines laid out for me, so I know how to work toward my well-defined end goal, and with the hands-off approach, I am free to do my own exploring and grow in the direction I want to get things done.

I have already learned so much about agile testing, and I expect to learn so much more in my following weeks. I’ve already been invited to sit in on different meetings, and I’ve gained insight on how our small, tight-knit groups work professionally to get the job done― high school dream teams on steroids. We embody the agile process. We have light-hearted jokes, and we have serious discussions. We indiscriminately lend a helping hand to each other. Everyone is in sync with finishing the next project. I only just got on board, patiently waiting for the next shipment of T-shirts to come in so I too can have “QASymphony” emblazoned proudly across my front. It’s a challenge being thrown headfirst into the technics, but not unsurmountable―and I embrace it.

Rachel Zhu currently interns at QASymphony and she is so excited to join the team! When she’s not helping with the company’s next big project, she enjoys playing flute, hanging with friends, and playing tennis. Contact her at rachelzhu@qasymphony.com

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