Clark University seniors Teodor Nicola-Antoniu and Clement Nagourney spent their summer with the same company, but doing different jobs, 1,200 miles apart. Still, you might say their work was connected — in the cloud.
Both students interned at the Fortune 500 company NetApp. Nicola-Antoniu worked as a data analyst at the company’s Sunnyvale, California, headquarters, and Nagourney was with a networking team in Boulder, Colorado. NetApp simplifies the management of applications and data across cloud and on-premises environments so organizations can accelerate their digital presence.
“My responsibilities included automating a financial model and reducing the calculation time from a month to a day by writing a pipeline in SQL,” says Nicola-Antoniu (pictured above). SQL, or Structured Query Language, allows a user to access and manipulate databases. He also worked with departments “to help them organize, analyze, and display meaningful data for their business purposes.”
Nagourney interned with the Platform Networking team on NetApp HCI’s SolidFire product, a storage system that uses flash media rather than hard disk drives. He continues to work on the product remotely.
“My main project involved adding LLDP support into the SolidFire product,” says Nagourney. “My typical day involved the process of writing code and going to SAFe-related meetings.” SAFe (Scaled Agile Framework) is a set of organization and workflow patterns that allow enterprises to scale practices across more than one team. LLDP, or Link Layer Discovery Protocol, allows for the standardized linking of devices from different manufacturers within a network.
Both students secured their internships through a “ClarkCONNECTion” — Signe Kurian ’91, whose husband, George Kurian, is CEO of NetApp. Signe Kurian encouraged NetApp to recruit Clark students for summer internships through ClarkCONNECT, which provides networking and internship opportunities that help prepare students for a successful career launch.
“Clarkies have this great mindset of giving back to the community that they are a part of,” says Nicola-Antoniu. “I am very grateful to Signe’s contribution in this process, and I am determined to help when my turn comes.”
Before the internship started, Nicola-Antoniu received a welcome email from George Kurian. “It was a special experience to receive a personal message from the CEO of a major tech company in Silicon Valley,” he says.
Clark’s liberal arts education, with its focus on experiential learning, was helpful in preparing both Nicola-Antoniu and Nagourney for their NetApp internships. In addition, Li Han, professor and chair of the Mathematics and Computer Science Department, supported the students as they prepared for the intense application and interview process.
“The courses I’ve taken have contributed to my problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, and provided many opportunities for practical learning,” Nagourney says.
“In many of the classes required for my majors, I had to work on projects that provided me with hands-on experience, which proved to be very useful during my internships,” says Nicola-Antoniu, from Bucharest, Romania, who is a double-major in computer science and math with a minor in economics.
The seniors’ NetApp experiences have helped them refine their post-Clark plans.
“I had a great time working at NetApp, and have learned a lot about what it’s like working at a large tech company,” says Nagourney, a computer science and physics double-major. “This experience has solidified my plan to work as a software developer and pursue a master’s degree.”
Nicola-Antoniu aims to enter the workplace after graduation. “I am planning to find a job at a prestigious company in the United States, and after a couple years, go back to college and obtain my master’s degree or a Ph.D.,” he says. “The knowledge I gained, and the skills I acquired, while working for NetApp opened many new opportunities for me. I am confident that I will be able to find the type of job I am looking for after college.”
Watch a video about Teodor Nicola-Antoniu’s internship at NetApp.