Barely a year since graduating from Dublin College University and taking up a graduate position, Shauna Moran has learnt more about computer science than she thought possible.
When Moran began her role as a graduate computer software engineer at Datalex last July, proudly holding a first-class degree in software engineering, she knew she had a lot left to learn but she was more than ready for the challenge.
“At college, you’re used to knowing everything about your own project – but at work, you have to join a project that’s been going on for years. It's much more about being part of a team, learning from the people around you and contributing to the overall team effort,” explains Moran.
Culture of learning
Barely six months into her new role, Moran found herself presenting at the company’s annual hackathon. While she admits it was a nerve-wracking experience – it also demonstrated to her the company’s commitment to innovation and development.
It also showed the company's willingness to put its faith and confidence in the young talent at its disposal.
Hands on experience
The pace of development within the industry is just one of the many reasons this is such an exciting field to be working in. It’s also why every company, whatever its size, needs to commit to the development of its team.
The myth that larger companies provide the best opportunities, is one Moran is quick to dismiss.
“In a lot of bigger companies, you’ll start by working in a defined role,” she explains. “In smaller to mid-sized companies, it’s more hands on. At Datalex, I’ve moved around different projects and tried new things plus enhanced my skills. It's all part of the learning process. In this industry, learning never ends.”
One example is a data analytics project Moran was asked to contribute to. By immersing herself in the project, Moran developed an interest in an area she’d had little experience of before. Datalex is now helping her to pursue that interest with additional training.
“By moving around projects, I’m picking up so much more than I thought I would,” she says.
She’s been able to apply that knowledge in different scenarios and develop a long list of contacts throughout the organisation that she can call on for support.
It’s fair to say that Moran is only just beginning to discover the full extent of job opportunities within the field of computer science.
Her advice to new graduates who feel paralysed by the options available, is simple: “Think about the tech you like and look for companies that you get a good feel for.”
The supportive culture at Datalex is certainly enabling Moran to play to her strengths. As she now considers the full range of options available to her, she can see that all the hard graft she put in as a graduate is paying off.
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