I had been part of the Corporate Work Study Program at my high school for four years. Four years at the same company, I learned how to interact with adults, complete tasks, and exhibit the idealistic attributes of a coveted student intern. Although I had been jaded from the corporate lifestyle and environment by the end of my senior year, there was something that excited me about spending my last summer before college at another company.
The ScriptEd program coordinates the instruction of computer programming high school students with the explicit intent of equipping them with the proficiency to be employed in the industry. This expectation attracted me to dedicate my summer to work at a tech firm: my involvement. I wasn’t disappointed.
We spent the first couple of days setting up our “machines”. Something that Will felt the need to apologize for. At the end of Wednesday, he expressed the same regret when he told us about the hour long tech team meeting in the afternoon. I, however, was very excited.
A couple dozen or so people filed into the meeting room. Among them were the “newbies”, including me and and my co-intern Shanice. With an agenda projected on the screen, the meeting commenced with the interns and new-hires introducing themselves in the front. When it came time for me to present myself, I was met with much welcome and excitement. As we returned to your seats, I had a realization. I was not only grateful for the experience of being mentored by professional web developers but also for the opportunity to witness and participate in the Technology department’s congregation.
As the meeting continued, Will, seated to my right, continued to work from his laptop. I was able to recognize the interfaces and platforms he was working on that I had been introduced to the days before. In that moment, I realized how much I was expected to engage in the company’s activity. We had spent the previous two and a half days setting up my laptop to host the resources and capabilities and perform the same jobs his did.
I realized that I had been right in thinking that this internship would be different. I was no longer someone who just followed assignments and reported to a single person. I was now part of a team as someone who was expected to contribute to the team.