I loved how much independence I was given while knowing that I had resources and support should I need them. This level of independence and ownership over the features I wrote let me make an impact and that was really fulfilling for me. – Param Thakkar, Software Developer Intern, zipBoard.
Param Thakkar is a 2nd year Computer Science student at the University of Waterloo. His 4-month internship as a Software Developer at zipBoard ended on Friday, August 18, 2023.
It’s worth noting that Param had prior experience as a software developer. But his internship with zipBoard…
…was the first time working professionally for 4 months straight.
As a software developer intern, Param led and contributed to product feature redesigns. He also worked on new and upcoming features for the zipBoard extension and web app.
Meet Param Thakkar:
I learned how to use Meteor.js and how it scales in a large production environment. I was also able to solidify my understanding of React during my time here.
I really loved working on the auto-tags feature. Oftentimes clients have hundreds of tasks and comments and they’re looking for a better way to sort through them. zipBoard allows these tasks and comments to be tagged, but many companies don’t have the time or resources to go through hundreds of tasks at a time and tag them all accordingly. That’s where I started exploring different ways of using AI to automatically add tags.
A group of students from BCIT had earlier proposed solutions and ideas as part of a university partnership program, but it was my job to weigh the pros and cons of different solutions and ultimately start work on implementing them. I found it to be rewarding because I was able to learn so much, everything from training a custom classification model to integrating with existing solutions like GPT or LLaMa 2. Although there wasn’t enough time to get this feature live before I left, I was able to get a dev demo up and running.
This project also got me thinking about different ways that AI can be utilized to enhance features and products, which was really cool.
I had many opportunities to learn from the senior developers on the team. Pair programming, debugging sessions, and weekly Q&A sessions all contributed to my learning and I found these meetings to be invaluable.
When I got stuck on a problem, my first instinct was to scour the web. There are so many resources and so much information, that most of the time I usually find my answer. I realized that Googling (and now prompting ChatGPT) is an indispensable skill to have for any job.
If I couldn’t make progress on my own or by using the web, I asked my mentor who was really helpful at pointing me in the right direction. If they weren’t online, there were many others on the dev team who were. The great thing about having a remote team from all around the world is that there’s usually always someone online!
I loved how much independence I was given while knowing that I had resources and support should I need them. This level of independence and ownership over the features I wrote let me make an impact and that was really fulfilling for me.
Of course! I would run into bugs and roadblocks all the time. But I had a great support system to help me overcome those.
I’ve definitely grown a lot as a software developer. The biggest thing I developed was my ability to communicate. I learned that communication is important, both within the developer team and with other non-technical stakeholders.
I’m only just getting started in my career! I do see myself continuing in the tech field. I like being a software developer, but in the long term, I want to be an entrepreneur and pursue my own venture.
I would highly recommend zipBoard’s internship program! I think zipBoard’s approach to treating interns like any other dev is fantastic for learning and gives interns a great opportunity to make a real impact.
Dorcas is a Content Marketing Specialist at zipBoard. She began her content marketing journey alongside her BA in Political Science and Spanish degree at the University of Ghana. If she’s not tapping away at her keyboard or spending time on Twitter and LinkedIn, she spends her day reading articles, newsletters and books.
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