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Microsoft: Full-Time! September 17, 2012

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I never really made the announcement here: I got an offer to come back to Microsoft as a full-time employee! I officially accepted and will be starting early next year. I’m so thrilled to have this wonderful opportunity!

Signature Event! July 25, 2012

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I’m currently sitting on a bus about to go to Microsoft’s yearly Intern Signature Event. So excited!

Week 10… wait, what?! July 18, 2012

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This is the 10th week of my internship – where’d the past 70 days go?!

As most people are in the same boat, it seems we’ve all kind of dedicated ourselves to finishing up our projects so this past week has had more casual events with people. I think this is also in part because a lot of us won’t be back until more than a year from now, so we want to spend as much time just relaxing with the friends we’ve made in our time here.

This past Thursday was intern day of caring. I’m guessing about 900 interns participated in the event across 6-8 different locations. My group decided to go to Mountains to Sound and clear up blackberry plants from the area. It turns out that the area we were clearing up used to be farmland – when it was given to the state it fell out of care and invasive blackberry plants started growing all over the land. The plants themselves aren’t so much a problem, but rather the fact that they prevent trees from growing close to the edges of the river. When trees grow near the edge of the river they provide shade which keeps the river at a much cooler temperature, which is suitable for salmon to swim in and thus promotes the preservation of wild salmon. It’s crazy to think of how the most seemingly far-removed things can be connected!

On Saturday a big group of interns headed to Golden Gardens beach for a bonfire. There were smores, guitars, volleyball, frisbee, awesome people, and an absolutely gorgeous backdrop surrounding us. I tried taking pictures, but they didn’t quite capture the gradient formed by the layers of mountains fading behind mist and the tinted flares of the sun reflected on the ocean.

That night I had to go to bed early, however, because the following day was the intern Mt. Rainier hike! Even though it’s July, there was still a lot of snow accumulated – the snow literally started at the beginning of the trail we followed.

I had never before in my life seen that much snow – considering the most northern place I’ve lived in during the winter is Atlanta! I also got to sled down hills for the first time in my life, which was ridiculously fun – almost makes me wish I’d grown up in a place with snowy winters until I remember that

  • I was wearing two sweaters during the hike and I was still cold
  • I spent half the hike trying to figure out how to walk in the snow; the other half was spent trying to figure out how to slide with my feet on the snow.

Pictures to come soon!

Midway! June 20, 2012

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I’ve barely been in Seattle a month, and I’m already in my sixth week of my internship. Aside from the expected frenzy of tasks and meetings and official and unofficial intern events, it also marks that I’m halfway through with it!

Aside from meeting with my manager to talk about my progress, this week I’ll be doing another presentation on my research. While it’s the same one I did last week, this time I’ll be presenting it to 15-20 people, almost all of which are PM (or related roles), so I expect the criticism and questions to be a bit different. I’m a bit nervous, but I’m also excited to see what they have to say.

And thus was week 1 May 22, 2012

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Monday started up early in time for New Employee Orientation (NEO)!

My roommates and I walked together with Paul and his roommates, Jeff and Curtis. The interns were let in to do logistics in batches, which left us with plenty of time to chat the rest of the interns starting that week.

One of many Microsoft signs around the main campus!

First mingling area at NEO

After the initial paperwork all interns were led to a big room in which we were gonna spend the rest of the day. We were seated in tables based on our divisions, it was fairly interesting to see the composition of our intern group.

I don’t know about the others, but I can definitely vouch for the easternmost STB table and its fascination with silly putty.

During lunch a decent group of around 11-12 of us sat in the commons and listened to Tom W. tell us a tale of transcendental cheese and sandwiches. After a couple of hours more of orientation we opted to not waste time and keep on socializing as we bought bikes!  Surprisingly, I was able to find an adult bike that is not only my favorite color, but is also my size (I have a 24.75 inch inseam, so riding a 26″ bike is more or less out of the question).

I actually managed to bike 1.5 miles home after not getting on a bicycle in about 4-5 years. Afterwards we decided to get happy hour sushi with some of the lunch crew and the bicycle shop group, it was quite excellent!

On Tuesday I got to meet my manager, my mentor, and part of my team. I’ll be working with the Visual Studio division this summer, and while I can’t say what my project is about I can say this: I’ve definitely hit the ground running! After four years at Tech, however, this is nothing out of the ordinary – definitely makes it fun 😉

The end of the week was marked by a Burrito Fiesta hosted by fellow Microsoft interns who live in our complex. The day after a group of us ventured to downtown Seattle for a cheese festival, Sushi, a visit to a thrift store in Capitol Hill where I found a leather jacket for $7(!!!), and a Hawaiian party put together by the same guys who had the potluck the week before.

Cheese festival – favorite cheese I tried was coconut milk cheese

Blue trees in downtown Seattle!

Old and new, all friends

In front of Molly Moon’s ice cream shop

My roommates and I in Hawaiian gear!

Sunday was spent mostly watching part of the first season of Game of Thrones and realizing that, if the first week was any indication, this is going to be a truly wonderful and lovely summer.

Hello, Seattle! May 13, 2012

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I’m safe and sound and settled in Seattle.

Whew, what a day!