My name is Austin Villanueva, and I am an upcoming Junior at Arizona State University. Having lived in the Silicon Valley all my life, I thought I knew what to expect from working at a tech company However after working at Quicken I was pleasantly surprised in all the best ways to discover how different it was.
Coming from a competitive college environment, it was not only a refreshing change to experience a team-based work culture, but it was a valuable learning opportunity. This is probably said by every Intern, but no amount of schooling can 100% prepare you for a real working environment. It is something you need to experience for yourself to really understand, and our mentors here have emphasized teaching us Interns everything they can.
The mentors don’t hold your hand the whole way, and they give us plenty of time to work on our own individual projects for the company. We are even allowed to work on projects that run outside the scope of our assigned department. I felt that there was a perfect balance between freedom and supervision, and was able to work with another intern, Mike Landolfi, on a ‘Quicken Dark Theme’ project. This allowed me to work with other areas within the company to explore an idea that I wanted to develop.
I originally thought I would only be interested in the coding part of the job, but I found myself enjoying the various ‘brown bag’ meetings where we were taught about different departments and their functions. I always love hearing about other people’s work, and it was fascinating to learn how the Marketing Team or Financial Team functioned.
In the end, I learned and experienced far more than I originally expected to. I didn’t feel like just another intern, I felt like I was a part of a greater team. I would highly recommend this opportunity to anyone who is considering working at Quicken.