By: Mike Kerins, Founder and CEO of RobustWealth
The unprecedented global pandemic has turned business as usual on its head. In turn, many companies struggled with how to move forward with their summer internship programs. We continued to look toward the future and welcomed a hardworking group of students to the team in late May. Even though the experience was completely virtual this year, productivity was higher than ever.
Following a stellar internship with us last summer, Sam Altier of Fordham University returned to support our trading and order management system (OMS) team. Max Cavallaro of Bates College also came back for round two, this time in our marketing and client success departments. Proving to be a resourceful addition to our ingestion team, Ryan Burns of Emory University rounded out our 2020 intern trio. Each intern truly hit the ground running and hopefully gained some invaluable experience along the way.
Recently, we all touched base to recap their time with us.
Mike: Each of you worked with various team members throughout the summer. I know that my team of wealth management professionals have plenty of wisdom to share. What was your favorite piece of advice?
Max: The best advice I’ve heard from several team members has been to always ask questions or reach out for further clarification. Everyone has been open and friendly with their feedback and guidance along the way. This advice has not only improved my communication skills but also allowed me to connect with many people across different teams, giving me an experience not possible in a college classroom.
Sam: During my second week, Senior Software Engineer, Jim Li, told me to take my time on my first ticket. It’s always good to be reminded to take it slow to minimize mistakes. That extra second, minute or hour spent on a project might be the difference between easy integration into our products and more time spent down the road trying to fix mistakes that could have been easily avoided.
Ryan: It’s easy to get frustrated over little mistakes, especially when small errors can create big blockages. My mentor, Neal Hill, Director of Data Architecture, told me that it’s alright to make these small mistakes because you’ll remember not to make them again. These experiences can prove to be great learning opportunities.
Mike: How has interning at RobustWealth, particularly during the pandemic, prepared you for your future?
Max: Being an internduring the pandemic has taught me flexibility. With today’s constantly changing atmosphere, this has become an essential skill. Becoming more adaptable has prepared me for the world which is inevitably always evolving – pandemic or not.
Sam: This internship hasbetter equipped me to work in unconventional environments and still contribute to the team in meaningful ways. I also got to witness the level of care and focus my mentors brought to tackling problems, in spite of the new (and occasionally distracting) online setting.
Ryan: It has helped me get a grasp on how companies have transitioned to working remotely and how technology has been used to keep teams and businesses connected. I’ve had to learn a lot about the infrastructure that keeps RobustWealth developers connected in the remote environment.
Mike: We are sad to see you go, but excited to see you continue to chase your goals. I have to ask, what’s next?
Max: I plan to complete my junior year at Bates College utilizing the skills I’ve learned from this internship, in the classroom and through my extracurricular activities. I will #ClimbOn by making the most of my final two years in college and creating opportunities based on what I’ve learned at RobustWealth.
Sam: I will either attend graduate school or make my way into the workforce. Either path will bring unique opportunities, benefits and challenges. So regardless of what I choose, I know that I have a world of excitement ahead of me.
Ryan: I plan to finish earning my applied mathematics and statistics degree at Emory University. I also have decided to continue learning code as I think it will be beneficial for my future. Next summer, I hope to find another internship to continue learning and growing in my field of study.
Sam, Max, and Ryan, you have all been great additions to our team. From all of us at RobustWealth, thank you! We are excited to see you #ClimbOn.