When we experience, we learn. At Nuance, we give students the opportunity to put their knowledge into action, take on tasks they’ve never done before and take their skills to the next level. Read about three Nuance intern experiences and the value of learning on the job.
Meredith Mascolo joined Nuance in 2013 and is the Senior Manager, Communications. A perfect job for her, as she loves words, puns and idioms. She’s also the community manager for our company intranet. Meredith earned a B.M. in music education from Oberlin Conservatory and a M.S. in Administrative Studies, Innovation and Technology from Boston University. She is a classically trained violinist who enjoys playing her 5-string electric at yoga classes and other musical projects. She loves reading, cooking and yoga.
Albert Einstein said, “The only source of knowledge is experience.” It’s powerful to put what you learn to practice in actual scenarios, going beyond what you learn in a book. The daily feeling of slight discomfort and excitement in trying new things, the “doing” part, the practice. It’s the life of an intern! Interns put themselves in a new environment with unfamiliar people and take on tasks they’ve never done before. It’s brave, it’s bold and it’s impactful. It embodies the spirit of Nuance!
At Nuance, most of our intern programs run in the summer while students are on break from school. But in our Montreal office, the intern program is year-round, with 150 curious, hard-working students specializing in computer science, software engineering, linguistics and more. “The program provides real-life and paid work experiences for students, while also supporting Nuance’s future talent growth pipeline,” says Samuël Cassiau, the program manager. In 2018, the program had 115 interns and 18 converted to employees. Let’s get to know a few of them.
Carlos: Computer Science student at the School of Engineering and Computer Science at Concordia University
Carlos was looking for an internship. The more he learned about Nuance and our innovative work with speech recognition and AI, the more he was interested in finding an internship at Nuance. The Software Testing internship position was particularly attractive to him because of his QA background. “One of the first products that got my attention was the Dragon Medical Virtual Assistant which is an amazing virtual assistant for doctors,” he said. “Right away, I realized I had found an awesome opportunity to work and learn at an amazing company in downtown Montreal.”
As a Software QA intern, he’s responsible for helping the team with automatization of tests, writing tests in Java, writing scripts for internal tools, regression of defects and more. He was not only able to help teams and be productive, but he also learned a lot in the process. Carlos’ internship was extended this fall for a second internship!
Mystine: Graduated from Algonquin College with a Certificate in Design Studies and an Advance Diploma in Graphic Design
Mystine was a freelance graphic designer when she joined Nuance as the UI Design Intern – she wanted to get experience in Voice design. “It’s starting to get big in the tech world and will eventually be a key feature in all design one day,” she said. In her intern experience she was part of a great team who was always there to help, mentor and support her. She was able to work on various projects and tasks, from reviewing project requirements to using best practices when creating or editing feature in speech applications. She even presented ideas to the design team and eventually to clients! “I gained new skills during my internship and got to communicate with different customers, which was such a great experience,” she said. Mystine is now a full-time employee on the User Interface Design Montreal team at Nuance!
Jesse: Computer Science student at the School of Engineering and Computer Science at Concordia University
Jesse had been programming for more than six years when he joined Nuance as the Software Development Intern. As an intern, he worked on numerous projects that allowed him to apply concepts he learned in school. He was also fortunate enough to have a mentor who helped guide him in the right direction on projects. Daily scrum meetings coupled with daily meetings with his mentor meant he always had work to do and was never stuck for too long on an issue. “I must give a lot of credit to my mentor. His ability to help me work through problems was top notch,” he said. “He didn’t just tell me how to fix it but helped me figure it out on my own.”
One of the projects Jesse worked on was updating a SOAP API to help a client. “I enjoyed this project because I was able to work on a new type of API while also do meaningful work.” All the projects/tasks that he completed during internship were used by the team which was very exciting and rewarding. Jesse was intern at Nuance the last summer and is looking for an opportunity to join us again this Winter Term.