Walking along the beach, I keep my eyes on the sand, hoping to catch a glimmer. Then, there it is—a kaleidoscope blanket of gems spread out before me. As I look closer, I see how each one is unique, yet no less dazzling than the others all around it.
This is how I feel each year when I receive resumes from candidates for our internship program with University College Cork in Ireland, a partnership that began in 2006 with just four applicants for two positions.
Since that first experimental year, the program has evolved and matured. Interns now have the opportunity to fully embed with our product team or various delivery teams, gaining exposure to as much real-world project experience as possible. We also throw them into the deep end of our corporate culture pool, recruiting them for such raucous activities as local league softball matches, intense Pictionary tournaments, and bone-crushing indoor soccer. And it seems the good word has traveled back to the other side of The Pond. We recently hired interns for the 2014 placement year and had to select just two from a pool of 25 well-qualified candidates—no easy task, I assure you. Everyone we speak with demonstrates technical savvy beyond his or her years, and is incredibly bright and charming. (Of course they are—this is the Irish we’re talking about after all.)
Part of the success of the Agencyport/UCC partnership stems from our work together to capitalize on the synergies of our respective goals. We meet regularly with students during their placement to ensure they are meeting their goals and are provided with opportunities to work on our cutting edge technology and innovative products. In return, we benefit from their talents and enthusiasm for five months. The result is a potential employee who can hit the ground running. Because of the emphasis we place on interns’ professional growth and the prospect of potential future employment—some of our most successful hires are alums of the program—Agencyport has become a top choice among program participants, competing against the likes of Fidelity, Microsoft, and Google.
With history as our guide, we now know that no matter which individuals we settle on each year, they will make great contributions to our organization: personally, culturally and intellectually. We have Irish interns to thank for some great technical solutions, including a seriously complex automated Jmeter test suite for one of our customers and a critically-acclaimed user conference mobile app.
Over the years, my colleagues and I have come to greatly admire and respect both our UCC interns and the program advisors, Ciaran Murphy and Patricia Lynch. These professional relationships have grown into lasting friendships, and I look forward to continuing to build both the program and the foundations of successful careers, whether it is software engineering or stardom in world-famous videos. Either way, we can say “we knew them when.”
Agencyport is always on the lookout for bright, hardworking, fun-loving team members: both interns and full-time players. (And you don’t even have to be from Ireland!) Interested in learning more? Check out our Careers Page.