Ishita Gupta, COE, Batch of 2015, received internship offers from two software giants, Microsoft and Google, in her third year. She chose to intern in Google and has received a pre-placement offer for her commendable work from the same.
Q1. How did the internship at Google happen? What was the selection procedure you had to go through?
Google doesn’t hire interns on campus, so I had to apply off-campus. Firstly, there was a résumé-based short listing. There was no percentage cut-off stated formally, however Google, usually rejects résumés with a percentage lower than 70. Though low percentage can be covered up with really good projects though.
After my résumé had been reviewed, I had two telephonic interviews with a gap of about 5 days between them. Interviews were purely technical, with some time to see team fit. There was a very brief discussion on projects.
Q2. How was your experience of interning in Google? Also, what kind of work did it entail?
The two months spent at Google were enjoyable and extremely enriching. The experience was first of its kind and offered deep insights into working on real world projects in a corporate environment. I was an intern in the Google Docs team and it was back-end work. There are a lot of internal tools and technologies used at Google, which were totally new to me. With the help of my mentor and tutorials, learning was quite smooth. In a nutshell, interning at Google was a great learning experience and I believe it is one of the best internship programs in the country.
Q3. What was your preparation strategy? What resources did you refer?
I had been coding extensively for over a year before the interviews. I believe regular programming practice is extremely important as it improves your thinking ability, speed as well as problem solving proficiency through code. It takes a long time to develop these skills. So, preparation actually begins several months before.
As the interview dates get closer, one can go through books like Cracking the Coding Interview and Programming Interviews Exposed. GeeksforGeeks is a must, but it requires a lot of effort and time and must be done extremely thoroughly. Just going through each post once is not enough and I had to do it multiple times before I felt confident with all the content therein. Also, 1-2 days before the interview should be left for revision.
Everything that was a part of Data Structures and Algorithms course in college, various sorting and searching algorithms, complexity analysis and GeeksforGeeks is the minimum that one should do before a programming interview.
Q4. What all college activities/societies were you involved in?
In my first year, I was a part of Rotaract and CSI. I attended some workshops organized by CSI and volunteered for some initiatives that Rotaract undertook. I was also a part of the organizing committee of NSIT MUN ’12. In my second year, I attended a few meetings of the Finance and Economics society. I enjoyed all the time that I spent being a part of various societies. However, it didn’t align with my interests for a long term, as I increasingly got involved with programming contests.
Q5. What would be your advice for students, interested in taking up a tech job?
I have a long way to go myself; I don’t feel I’ve achieved anything exceptional to advise anyone.