What I Do
Hi! My name is Stephanie Bertrand. I’m a rising senior at UNC Chapel Hill studying computer science. I’m spending my summer interning for the Developer Experience Team here at Bandwidth. Let me start by providing a description of what my team does:
We make it easy and fun for people to add voice, messaging, and phone number capabilities into their applications using Bandwidth’s API platform.
As an intern, I am tasked with helping make this mission become a reality. Some of my day-to-day work includes the following:
- Making sure that Bandwidth’s API documentation is easy to read and navigate
- Creating example applications using Bandwidth’s API to help prospects and customers use our platform
- Teaching Bandwidth team members more about our API platform technology so they can better understand our customers and their goals
Anything having to do with the attraction and enjoyment aspects of Bandwidth’s API Platform is our game. I find this work satisfying because I can build things that our customers use every day using my creativity and knowledge. I enjoy thinking of new ways to improve systems and positively impact those using them, so it’s wonderful to be applying my values to our work.
Doin’ it On the Daily
So now that you have some background about my role at Bandwidth, let me share with you what we do on a daily basis.
When I come into work around 8am, I usually start the day by checking email, my calendar, Slack, and Trello. This gives me a good idea of what time we have left in the day to manage our projects and other small assignments.
In the mornings, I often continue projects we were working on the day before, like the sample app I’m creating. I appreciate the fact that we were given the opportunity to choose some of the new skills we would acquire during the internship. I picked learning to code in NodeJS. Another developer experience intern, Jillian, chose to learn more about Python.
The first thing our boss did was tell us to create an app in NodeJS using Bandwidth’s Voice and Messaging API Platform. Dan, the main developer experience “teacher” within our team, gave us all the necessary software and tools to get us started. To help us understand what our customers want to accomplish, we were both told to brainstorm what new apps could be created using the APIs. We had demos running in a few hours. Now, about a month and a half in, our apps are basically production-ready.
I chose to make an app to assist survivors of sexual assault in preserving information immediately following an assault. Jillian created a ‘smarter alarm clock,’ which calls you until you pick up, then gives a rundown of the day’s schedule, weather, and relevant news.
When lunchtime comes around, at 12:00pm, Jill and I often will go to NC State’s gym, since Bandwidth is located on the university’s campus and has access to its facilities. We’ll sometimes play intramural sports like kickball, four square, and flag football with other employees. It’s a ridiculously fun way to take a break and meet colleagues. I usually can’t stop laughing as we play games designed for kids.
After lunchtime, we get started on some other work related to Bandwidth’s developer experience. Aside from these apps, we’ve started updating the Voice and Messaging API documentation. We will soon start updating documentation for the Phone Numbers API. One of Bandwidth’s goals is creating excellent customer experiences that align with Bandwidth’s values. The work we’re doing here will directly contribute to that goal.
A couple of weeks ago, my day-to-day became even more exciting thanks to Bandwidth’s Spirit Week. Remember back in high school when there was a Spirit Week with different themed days? Same thing except this time it’s full grown adults competing in ridiculous games to make money for charity and win PTO (vacation days)—it’s a ton of fun, and so competitive!
Spirit Week was also part of the latest Bandwidth Challenge. Every challenge at Bandwidth focuses on three elements: mind, body and spirit. As the “mind” part of the same challenge, our team led a company-wide hackathon where we taught most of Bandwidth’s employees how to solve problems with APIs. It’s given me a great opportunity to work on my public speaking and presentation skills. We also assume the role of ‘teacher’ to other seasoned Bandwidth employees, even though we’re interns.
The end of the day comes around 5pm, or later if we wish to stay and get more work done. Crazy? Nah, we just like it here. I think we – my team in particular and Bandwidth in general – do an exceptional job at balancing work with friendliness and upbeat progression. I am always happy to come to work and be with my team. We get things done and we get things done happily. There is always a sense of self-progression, of feeling like we have an abundance of resources available to us to help achieve our goals, and it’s met with appreciation.
This is part of our blog series written by our awesome Summer 2017 Interns.