In which Clay introduces himself.
April 9, 2019
[ Editor's Note! Clay has been with us as an intern since December, but we're just getting him to write an introduction now. He's great! Also, we swear he picked out this photo.]
I am a junior at KU studying Computer Science and current software intern at Brand New Box. I was connected to Nate and Brand New Box through a mutual friend (Networking is key!!). A few days after swapping emails and discussing future opportunities, I was accepted as an intern.
Working at Brand New Box has been riveting to say the least. I knew coming in that I would be expected to learn a language and framework previously unfamiliar to me. The onboarding process gave me more than enough time to adequately understand how powerful of a framework Ruby on Rails really is.
An integral part of the learning journey was the chance to develop an entire web application from scratch… all on my own. While intimidating at first, insight from co-workers (notably Will, Josh and Brock) and the easy-to-follow project outline (nods to Nate) allowed me to sharpen my Rails knowledge.
MovieCannon is a cataloging site for film enthusiasts interested in uniquely categorizing and writing reviews for films. Among other things, this project challenged my capacity for long-term discipline. While my vision shifted during development, staying focused on the core features of MovieCannon forced me to face new challenges daily.
Let me illustrate. It’s nearly a due east route from Lawrence to St. Louis by I-70. That’s a journey one can take without looking at a map once. Imagine that being an application even a beginner developer can tackle easy (sounds appealing to lazy Clay). If one wants to push themselves though, they need to take a different path. Maybe take I-435 to KC, I-49 to Joplin and then I-44 to St. Louis. Imagine that as an application requiring features the hired developer hasn’t encountered before. The journey is longer, the work is more challenging, but the destination is more rewarding. A developer obtains much more valuable experience and knowledge by taking the longer path.
I am thankful for the opportunity Brand New Box provided through the self-guided project as I was able to take a more demanding route in order to obtain a well-rounded understanding of the Rails framework.
On top of studying a dynamic web framework, this experience continually teaches me the value of being comfortable with knowing what you don’t know. Asking for help can be a scary thing especially when your eager to impress your co-workers. Having people around to assist your learning process with grace and dedication is integral to your personal growth. Here at Brand New Box, everyone understands the trials and tribulations provided with learning a new framework. Knowing this, I’ve been comfortable acknowledging where my knowledge is lacking in order to seek insight from my fellow co-workers (Specifically Will!).
Thanks to everyone here, I have a greater respect for web development and hope to continue working with it in the future. I am certain Brand New Box creates the best web applications while also shaping the best people. I am excited to see what the future has in store here and beyond!