“I don’t know anything!” – Me in Summer 2017
How did I get here? What does this do? What does that mean? How does this all work?
From time to time, I continued to wonder just how I managed to land this internship, and how in the world I could learn everything quickly and well enough to be independent by the end of the summer. As if it wasn’t difficult enough trying to familiarize myself with the team’s immense code base, various programming tools, and technical lingo, I struggled with feeling terribly unprepared.
In order to tackle my unease, I spoke with other interns about their progress and how they felt about their work, reminded myself that I wasn’t expected to know everything as an intern, and reassured myself that if I continued to do my best to learn, it would all fall into place naturally.
Over time, I learned to balance when to ask for help from my mentor or team, and when to struggle a bit more through intuition, which was something that I was able to pick up easily through experience.
While I still don’t feel as prepared and well informed as I think I should be (and probably never will), I have gained significant confidence in my potential and increasing improvement in my abilities by continuously asking questions, challenging ideas, and writing code.