Internships aren't just for learning skills, but also for creating memories
“Internships are the finest way to get your foot in the door and obtain some first-hand experience while you’re still at university. Startups are wonderful places to intern since you get a lot of hands-on experience and get a lot of instruction.” It has been said to us so many times during our university years, and one of our interns, Sherene, was struck by this statement when she applied for an internship at MatcHub. While we spoke with her, she shared some anecdotes about her experiences as an intern, as well as her motivation for joining MatcHub.
Photo Credit: Sherene
Why did you join MatcHub?
I applied for this job because I wanted to see what it’s like to work for a startup and how I would fit in with its culture. Additionally, it was a way to keep me busy on my vacation by getting more hands-on experience with front-end development. MattHub uses a different tech stack than what I’m used to, so I had a great chance to learn something new.
What did you achieve?
I spent most of my time working on the MatcHub beta launch adjustments during my two-month internship. Fortunately, the previous software already had most of the features we needed, so we just had to tweak and add a few things to make sure they were working. My proudest achievement was working on the mobile responsiveness of the corporate displays.
Testing mobile responsiveness (Gif Credit: Sherene)
Nowadays, mobile responsiveness is becoming increasingly important in website development, especially since most people surf websites on their phones, so websites need to be mobile-friendly and their info displayed correctly. However, I’ve only ever designed sites for desktops. Consequently, this work was fascinating to me since I learned new skills. When I created a mobile view for each screen I was working on, I was ecstatic. Seeing how well the material displayed across multiple breakpoints and that the current screen looked great on both desktop and mobile was incredibly exciting.
Testing mobile responsiveness (Gif Credit: Sherene)
What did you overcome?
Understanding and changing the code would be the most difficult task. I always had to develop the codebase from scratch in my previous project and internship experiences, thus I never had to worry about the code being illegible and I had complete control over the code that was produced. However, this is the first project where I had to read from an existing codebase to understand what was done and how things were done, in addition to understanding what needed to be added and what needed to be changed to meet the new goals.
What did you enjoy about your work?
I collaborated with three other interns. This was my first time working with a large group of interns, so it was an intriguing experience. In my previous experiences, I had only had to work with myself and at most one other intern, so working in a larger team was a little intimidating. I prefer to work alone, especially since I am fairly fussy when it comes to coding, and discrepancies amongst coders tend to clutter the codebase. The experience also taught me how to collaborate with other programmers and how to learn from the coding practices of other programmers. It was also extremely lovely that the other interns were eager to contribute what they knew – for example, there may be spontaneous conversations at different times of the day when they explain and run through coding practices with me.
I’m more attracted to front-end work because it’s so visible. Front-end is mainly about how the user interface looks to them, and it involves a lot of content styling. You usually see the results of what you’re writing fairly immediately, so it’s less monotonous and mundane than back-end work. Plus, because you’re continuously creating displays from different designs, any new job I take on presents a new challenge.
Since I want to undertake front-end programming in the future, having a deeper grasp of what I already know helps to consolidate my expertise, and exposure to new frameworks and technologies helps to widen my knowledge of what’s available. Furthermore, this is my first experience working in a cross-functional team. My primary team consists of software engineering interns, however we had to collaborate closely with the UI/UX team when working on the web screens. This is something I didn’t have to do on past projects because the core team I was part of was frequently the sole team on the project. As a result, this is a fantastic opportunity for me to get a sense of what it might be like in my future profession, where a single modification may elicit responses from a large number of individuals. It’s also more realistic to how work will be in the future, where you’re not only accountable to your team for the job you perform, but your work is also intertwined with the work of other teams.
What did you enjoy during your time with MatcHub?
I was lucky enough to join MatcHub during the winter season, which allowed me to attend two corporate meetings in December. One of the things I appreciate about MatcHub is how nice everyone is. The flat structure, which values interns equally to full-timers and ensures that interns’ opinions are heard, makes it much easier for quieter individuals like myself to speak out. It was quite simple to make a proposal, which creates an environment that encourages anyone to speak their views – after all, everyone is simply trying to improve things in whichever way they can.
A big part of company culture is built from the people that you work with so having opportunities to get to know people better also helped to make things a lot easier when working together. I also liked how the idea of ‘work hard, play hard’ is very strong in MatcHub – when it’s time to be serious, everyone works hard together to get things done but when it’s time to play, everyone also has a lot of fun together.
Sherene, sitting closest to the camera – “playing hard” with the team (Credit: Sherene)
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