Meet our 2019 interns: Bolade, Uzoma, Carolina, and Sanjit share their networking advice for future interns

2019 Intern Class Photo

As finding employment in the tech industry becomes more competitive, one thing gives college graduates a big upper hand: an internship at a top company. Dropbox’s 12-week summer internship program offers students from a variety of disciplines the opportunity to gain some hands-on experience. Engineering intern Carolina Ortega, product analytics intern Bolade Fatade, software engineering intern Uzoma Nwakuche, and programming languages intern Sanjit Kalapatapu have found their experiences beneficial in helping them figure out their future.

Left: Carolina; Right: Carolina at the Tuck Shop

Carolina, a computer science student at MIT, has always been eager to learn in immersive environments. Originally from Colombia, she loves exploring the city and going to the theatre (she dabbles in acting herself) but is still figuring out exactly what she wants to do after college. Her experience at Dropbox has helped her to learn more about the industry and find her place in it.

“This is my first internship, so I was excited to see how things go outside of classes, and to see how a company works in the real world. I’ve spent a lot of time talking to people with different backgrounds and experiences and advice about life. I’ve met people who studied neuroscience and are now doing analytics — I had lunch the other day with someone who was a microbiologist and is now an engineer! It’s great to hear different points of view while I figure out what to do with my future.”

Left: Bolade; Right: Bolade white water rafting

Bolade, a student at Carnegie Melon, is an avid reader and hungry learner like Carolina. While his education has taught him many important skills, witnessing the growth of a company first-hand has been a totally different experience. Not only has he gained valuable insights about the way a company works, but he has been able to rub shoulders with and learn from the people who have made our company what it is today. These connections could prove indispensable in Bolade’s future after graduation.

“Those 12 weeks in an internship are very different than 12 weeks in school. You’re at the front lines of a company that is moving very quickly. You’re coming to a product that has unthinkable reach with over hundreds of millions of users, and you’re in the space where those decisions you read about are actually being made. Being able to immerse yourself in that, to learn from it, and to contribute to it in any way you can is a unique opportunity.”

We aim to facilitate career explorations and networking experiences for our interns. We sponsor dozens of activities every summer to help them connect with each other as well as Dropbox employees. These activities include everything from panels with Dropbox executives to visiting employees’ homes for dinner to taking a sunset cruise on the bay. More often than not, the opportunity to talk with full-timers is a benefit that many interns cite as their favorite.

Left: Sanjit; Right: Sajnjit with his Dropbox mentor

Sanjit, a musician and CS major from the University of Pennsylvania, said, “The first quarter of my internship, I was very focused on my project and didn’t reach out to people. But when I started scheduling coffee chats, it became so beneficial. I’ve been able to interact with a lot of really smart people. My mentor in particular works in the same discipline I want to someday, so I’ve been able to ask him for career advice all the time.”

Uzoma

Uzoma, an electrical engineering and CS major from UC Berkeley, echoed this sentiment. As a Bay Area native, he’s been living among the booming tech scene for a long time. When he’s not watching the Golden State Warriors play basketball, he’s also been diligent about meeting the people that have built the industry. He’s passionate about advising future interns to do the same.

“My biggest piece of advice would be to talk to people! When you’re working at a company like Dropbox, you’re working with some of the best talent in the world. So talk to them about what they’re doing and how they got here. What obstacles did they face? What can you learn from them?”

Stay tuned for more intern features to come, and keep an eye out for recruitment opportunities popping up in the fall. For information on other job openings, visit dropbox.com/jobs.

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