Prepping for a career in tech with a ‘winternship’ at Verizon
While many college students might prefer to relax during winter break, Daniel, a junior at New York Institute of Technology (NYIT), used the time off to get a head start on his future career. The electrical and computer engineering technology major completed an intensive two-week ‘winternship’ at Verizon’s operational headquarters in New Jersey, where he engaged with professionals from a variety of backgrounds and analyzed complex corporate data.
Daniel tapped into the opportunity through the Emerging Leaders Internship Program for College Students with Disabilities, funded by the UPS Foundation and coordinated by the National Business & Disability Council (NBDC) at The Viscardi Center. He hopes enrollment in the Emerging Leaders program can connect him to competitive internships and jobs. Several years ago, his older brother landed a summer internship through the program that led to a full-time accounting position at a national life insurance company.
“Visiting different Verizon offices and speaking with employees of all levels about their unique career paths was a valuable experience,” he said. “A highlight for me was learning how engineers test 5G speed and phone durability at the Verizon lab.”
Daniel and a fellow intern were tasked with harnessing a nuanced analytics platform called Tableau to transform complex data into meaningful, easy-to-digest insights. At the end of the internship, the duo demonstrated their knowledge of the software by mapping and graphing specific data sets and presenting their findings to senior analysts.
Using creative solutions to solve problems isn’t new territory for Daniel. As a driven and career-oriented student who has what he describes as a neurological processing disorder, patience and out-of-the-box thinking are key.
“I have a condition called dyspraxia, so sometimes when I learn something new, it might take a little while for me to pick it up. But eventually, once I give myself time to fully process a new idea, I’ll get it.”
Back at school this spring semester, Daniel is studying how to use versatile single-board computers to program sensors, LED lights, and other electronics. One of a select few high-performing students enrolled in NYIT’s accelerated M.S. program, Daniel is a member of the Golden Key International Honor Society and has never let his GPA dip below a 3.5. As he expands his fluency in programming languages, he envisions coding sophisticated software and hardware like security systems and robots in the not-so-distant future.
“My intentions are to succeed, and in the past, I have succeeded in everything that I have tried. When things get hard, I work harder.”