My Internship at the Office of IT for SUNY Administration Systems

          

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   I was hired as an intern by the Office of Information Technology for SUNY Administration Systems in downtown Albany in mid-February 2013.  I worked part-time (20 hrs) per week while attending school.  My duties as an intern were to implement business requests and designs for web pages for human resources forms.   Since I started, I have become familiar with the process of how web clients interact with servers.  I have become well versed in how web applications, such as the “person” human resources application which I have been working on, implement the model-view-controller separation principle.  When applied, it utilizes control flow code to separate the view code from the business code.  I have come to learn that if you are planning on being a Java programmer, then it will be more than helpful to learn design patterns, as they are used extensively in large scale applications.  I was able to make more sense of the structure and flow of the code once a gained a good understanding of some of the main design patterns, which is useful when there are thousands of Java classes to untangle in your mind.  Some core tools I use include JSP, Struts, JavaBeans and Hibernate.

                  When I first started working (more like learning), they started me out by having me add a few new fields to a web form which forced me to learn the path the input (from the user) takes before it reaches the database.  This process familiarized me with the structure of their applications.  After that, they had me implement various business edits, such as verifying input (no blanks etc) and also resetting values and displaying messages depending on the content of the input provided by the user.  So far, my largest project was to add a table containing audit information to several forms across the application.  The same audit table is inserted into each JSP pages which should display the information.  Although this is a medium-sized assignment, there is still lots of coding involved.  I learned never to underestimate the amount of coding it takes to implement some of the simpler sounding tasks. 

                As far as practical experience is concerned, I have certainly gained knowledge about what it is like to work in a professional office setting from day to day.  Much of what I learned came from asking co-workers questions (without bugging them too much), and also LOTS of Google searches.  I also learned that as an intern, you cannot expect to be productive right out of the gate, especially if most of the knowledge required for the job is learned on the job.  It takes a little while to get familiar with the tools and frameworks.  It can seem intimidating at first, but you just have to work hard, keep pushing, and stick with it until you finally start to feel comfortable.  It’s a bit of a relief once you finally get something working.

Stephen DeRubertis, BS Computer Science, Graduating Spring 2013

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