Meet Pete – a Kurtosys intern in the engineering department. Learn what it was like for him to go from a relaxed university schedule to a dynamic and challenging professional environment.
When I first decided to do an industrial placement year, I took a massive leap of faith. Would I enjoy the working life? Are my skills adequate to do the job? Will I be stuck doing admin work? Having not even completed my degree at University before starting my internship in the Engineering department of Kurtosys, I had no clue what to expect from the world of work or how well I could adapt.
The transition from being a university student attending two or three lectures per day to working a 9-6 job was definitely not easy, especially waking up early. University sure didn’t prepare me for that!
Throughout my time at Kurtosys, I have learned a lot about work etiquette and procedures such as following standard coding conventions. I’ve also learned agile and test driven development methods as well as documentation and version control processes. These were mostly overlooked during my time during university, but now after working as part of a big team with a large code base, I understand the importance of all the ‘mundane’ processes.
The biggest learning curve for me was the fact that most of the code base was developed in a different language than I had studied at University. Despite my doubts and lack of knowledge, excellent training sessions provided by the Kurtosys Engineering team allowed me to quickly grasp new concepts. I gained a deeper understanding of the architecture of Kurtosys’ systems and software, which has equipped me with the skills needed to excel at my role.
As an intern, most of my time is spent working on enhancements and bug fixes for our fund factsheet product. But every change is completely different from the last, so I have learned how to adapt to new problems and find innovative solutions.
One change that has stuck with me the most was an enhancement to implement exploded pie charts — just one of the data-centric components of our automated fund factsheet solution. Chart objects are positioned based on coordinates, so I had to revisit old trigonometry and Pythagoras maths skills to create a formula that moves each section of the pie chart outwards at a variable angle. How wrong I was to think I would never have to use trigonometry again post high school!
Becoming part of a team
Gradually, I have grown in confidence. I was constantly given more responsibilities as I became better at my tasks and formed a deeper understanding of how the systems work. Despite just being an intern, I feel as if I am an integral member of the team that has advanced our products. Seeing my work used by real clients gives me a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that makes working in Dev such a joy.
Over the course of my internship, I rose from being the sleepy kid from University to becoming an integral part of the Kurtosys staff. Kurtosys has given me a wonderful opportunity to develop my skills and abilities and get a taste of the ‘real world’. I’ve gone from working with the infrastructure team on installing new servers at our datacentre to attending sales meetings. This has given me the opportunity to fully grasp all aspects of the business.
As my time at Kurtosys comes to a close, I can truly say that this professional experience is a memorable and invaluable one!