Internship profile: Yingxin Jiang
2 July 2012, by Jiang Yingxin
I applied for an internship at Softwire because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do after my maths degree at Cambridge. My only previous experience of programming was writing basic console applications for my maths coursework. I had fun with this, so I wanted to get a better idea of what programming was like.
I enjoyed the workplace environment right away: I went to the pub with my new colleagues, signed up for drum lessons in the office, and learned to play Postman Pat on the guitar at lunchtime. But I wasn’t initially convinced that software development was for me. It wasn’t as interesting as I had hoped, and in the first few weeks I often found it quite frustrating.
Since then however, Softwire has managed to change my mind completely, though I can’t pinpoint exactly how. It’s not just that my latest project is more interesting and consists of more substantial tasks; I’ve become genuinely excited about learning and improving, and eager to do more. I think it’s because the whole atmosphere of caring about programming has gradually rubbed off on me. There’s a strong focus on personal development at Softwire: every developer in the office is constantly trying out new technologies and sharing their discoveries over blog posts and emails. There’s a drive to pursue technical excellence for its own sake, and I’m inspired by that. I wouldn’t want to leave software development now – not while there is so much left to learn!
There’s no doubt that Softwire is an amazing company to work for, and the management continuously puts a lot of thought and effort into making it even better. Other people have written about this more eloquently than I can, and their descriptions of the enviable social life here are no exaggeration. But in reality, I don’t need much extra motivation to socialise. Softwire has motivated me to work at becoming a better developer, and that has been much more valuable.