Archive for Erin Rutan

Pizza My Mind Presented by Verisign

On March 4, Verisign joined the Physics, Computer Science and Engineering department to present Pizza My Mind. Verisign is a global provider of domain name registry services and internet infrastructure. With the mission to “enable the world to connect online with reliability and confidence, anytime, anywhere,” Verisign enables internet navigation for many of the world’s most recognized domain names. Verisign’s main office is in Reston, Virginia, and they have data centers across the country as well as server spaces around the world. Presenter’s Sean Mountcastle (Vice President Engineering, Technology Services Group), Hari Sola (Sr. Engineer — Software Engineering), Dave Carney (Human Resources Specialist), and Kelly Donnelly (Senior Recruiter) shared more about the culture at Verisign as well as opportunities they have available.

Verisign’s core values include passion for the pursuit of continuous improvement, respect for others, integrity, taking responsibility for actions, and holding themselves to a higher standard. With many technologies worked on within the company, there are a variety of diverse rolls available. Verisign engineers strive to develop solutions, ensure reliability of key infrastructure, and drive innovation. These tasks are accomplished in an agile working environment. Interns can hope to accomplish the same goals. 

Interns are expected to be passionate about technology, willing to learn quickly, and have good programming skills. Verisign offers a lot of support for their interns and full time employees. Interns receive mentors and are given tasks that have a real impact on the company. To stand out, applicants can highlight personal projects and hackathon participation, demonstrate interest in the subject, and show curiosity and willingness to learn as well as attention to detail. US Citizenship is a requirement. 

Verisign is engaged in community outreach to promote diversity, and they are looking for diversity in applicants for both internships and full time positions. Once hired at Verisign, there is a focus on promoting from within as well as internal mobility. Benefits to working for Verising include tuition reimbursement, education reimbursement, and support for employees. Verisign reacted quickly to concerns for COVID-19 by switching to work from home, increasing mental health benefits and PTO accrual, giving employees more holidays, encouraging time off, and supporting their employees in a multitude of other ways. 

To learn more about Verisign’s opportunities, please visit verisign.com/en_US/company-information/verisign-careers/index.xhtml

Thank you, Sean Mountcastle, Hari Sola, Dave Carney, and Kelly Donnelly for joining us at Pizza My Mind for the first time. We hope to see you again!

Pizza My Mind Presented by IBM

The Department of Physics, Computer Science and Engineering had the pleasure of hosting IBM for Pizza My Mind on March 11. IBM is headquartered in New York, and has offices across the United States. Their work includes artificial intelligence, quantum computing, blockchain, hybrid cloud, and other services. As a large company, IBM strives to make an even larger impact by combining people and technology to help out communities in need. They work to aid those impacted by natural disasters, as well as help to provide education, food, and health services. Presenter Tom McCreary, Client Technical Manager at the IBM Federal Office in McLean, Christopher Newport University Alum, and Chairman of the PCSE Industry Advisory Board, joined us to talk about the opportunities available at IBM.

A career at IBM allows you to experiment with technologies, industries, roles, and locations all without having to leave the company. IBM prioritizes diversity and inclusion. There are early career opportunities available for developers, designers, data scientists, and more. 

The IBM internship is a 10-week program in Washington DC with 50 positions available. Applications open in the fall, and applicants are expected to express interest in learning new things. The Internship program for Summer 2021 is full at this time, but they will begin taking applications for the Summer 2022 internship program in September. Interviews begin in January and include a trip to DC to meet other potential interns and give a presentation. 

To learn more about IBM, please visit www.ibm.com

Thank you, Tom McCreary for taking the time to talk about IBM with us.  We hope to see you again next year!

Pizza My Mind Presented by Collier Research Corporation

On February 25, Collier Research Corporation presented Pizza My Mind. Collier Research Corporation is an aerospace engineering software company based in Newport News. Their flagship product is the HyperSizer software that is used for structural design in the aerospace industry. Additionally, they contract for companies like Blue Origin, Boeing, Bell Helicopter, and more. Presenter Charli Black (aerospace engineer) was joined by current Christopher Newport University Students and HyperSizer interns Emery Weist and Peter Glenn.

The HyperSizer software uses many technologies including Microsoft Access (Database), Fortran (Analysis Code), VB6 (Graphics), C++ (Plugins), and many other languages. Collier Research Corporation is currently in the process of porting the database to SQL as well as the analysis code to C# and C++. They are currently looking for software engineers proficient in C# or Java, WPF/Swing/other UI frameworks, 3D graphics development, Relational Database Management Systems, and/or C++. 

There are openings available for summer interns as well as full time candidates. Collier Research Corporation is a small company, so each employee has an important role and can see their impact. The atmosphere is relaxed, and everyone cares about their work. 

Emery and Peter have interned during their summers, and have both accepted full time positions with Collier Research Corporation. Emery shared that as an intern, his work had a big impact. He spoke of his experience sharing what he was working on with the CEO as he walked around the office. Peter shared a long list of things he appreciates about working at Collier Research Corporation including the small company size, the importance of his work, the atmosphere of collective success, and the supportive environment. Peter also gave advice to stand out as an applicant by linking your GitHub page or referencing personal projects you have worked on to show passion and initiative. 

For more information visit hypersizer.com.

Thank you to Charli Black, Emery Weist, and Peter Glenn for your excellent presentation!

Pizza My Mind Presented by Kimley-Horn

Kimley-Horn presented Pizza My Mind on February 18. Headquartered in North Carolina, this growing company now has more than 90 offices across the country. Kimley-Horn is a multidisciplinary consulting firm with a wide range of services including aviation, energy, environmental planning, forensics, parking, water, and many more. Presenters Ben Priddy (College Recruiter), Victoria Holmes (Environmental Analyst), and Jon Chambers (Electrical Engineer) joined us to talk about what Kimley-Horn has to offer.

At Kimley-Horn “teamwork is paramount to success.” There are numerous opportunities for employees to be challenged and grow. Kimley-Horn has a unique “shifting” program that allows employees to travel to other offices for short periods of time to help on projects where help is needed. New hires at Kimley horn are offered training and boot camps followed by professional development training opportunities for the next 6 years.

Kimley-Horn offers bonuses, paid time off, retirement contributions, health and wellness perks, ownership/stock opportunities, and many more perks. During COVID-19, Kimley-Horn has supported employees by shifting to work from home. Employees are offered flexible schedules to accommodate for things like kids participating in school from home as well. Each employee is supported to make sure they are comfortable and accommodated in these unprecedented times. 

Kimley-Horn is currently hiring for internships and full time opportunities. For more information please visit kimley-horn.com/join-our-team/working-at-kimley-horn/

Thank you for the fun, information filled presentation Ben Priddy, Victoria Holmes, and Jon Chambers.

Pizza My Mind Presented by General Dynamics Information Technology

General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT) presented Pizza My Mind on February 11. GDIT is a subsection of General Dynamics, a company with locations all across the globe. GDIT serves as a defense contractor working in many areas such as artificial intelligence and applied machine learning,  enterprise IT, cyber, cloud, application development, and more. Presenters Jay Powell (Chief Technology Officer) and Amira Nguyen (Early Career Recruiter) joined us to talk about what GDIT does and what opportunities they have available.

One of GDIT’s initiatives is equality, inclusion, and diversity. They are actively working to foster a diverse culture within the workplace. GDIT offers a ten week paid internship program that will be 100% virtual this summer due to COVID-19. GDIT hires all skill levels and features a supportive training program for new hires. 

GDIT responded to COVID-19 by immediately sending everyone that could to work from home. Employees were supplied with ample collaboration tools, laptops or remote desktop access to their work environment. Meetings of more than 4 people were prohibited, and those in the office are expected to wear masks and social distance to keep everyone safe. They have worked to continuously support their employees through uncertain times.

For those interested in cybersecurity, there are many opportunities available at GDIT including pen testing, computer network defense, attack, and exploit, and many more areas of focus.

For more information visit gdit.com/careers/

Thank you Jay Powell and Amira Nguyen for your wonderful presentation!

Pizza My Mind Presented by Marathon Consulting

On February 4, Marathon Consulting presented Pizza My Mind. Marathon is a consulting company headquartered in Virginia Beach. They have been voted one of the best places to work in Virginia since 2011. They serve private industries rather than the federal government and work in fields from healthcare to finance to education and many more. Marathon strives to recruit and retain the best of the best. Presenters Harris Pezzella (President), Tom Marsden (Vice President), Katie Keene (Senior Recruiter), and Lindsey Mashburn (Senior Recruiter) joined us to talk about the opportunities available at Marathon.

The culture at Marathon is very social, and the company has taken great care to keep this culture alive in the virtual environment we find ourselves in today. Marathon focuses on nurturing the professional and personal growth of each employee as well as maintaining a balance between life and dignity. Employees at Marathon receive healthcare, paid time off, paid premium overtime, a competitive 401k, professional development training, health and wellness benefits, among other benefits.

In recent years, the company focus has shifted from senior level consultants to identifying less senior talent who can learn and develop skills. Marathon offers an internship program with the chance to transition to full time employment. In particular, Marathon is looking for interns interested in web development, application development, mobile development, and quality assurance. All students who are interested should keep an eye out on Handshake for upcoming summer positions. 

Visit www.marathonus.com for more information.

Thank you to Harris Pezzella, Tom Marsden, Katie Keene, and Lindsey Mashburn for your informative presentation!

Pizza My Mind Presented by Booz Allen Hamilton

Booz Allen Hamilton presented the first Pizza My Mind of the semester on January 21. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, Booz Allen is a consulting firm whose purpose is to empower people to change the world. The firm is organized into several groups: global defense, national security, civilian services, strategic innovation, and enterprise services. CNU Alumni Adam White (Lead Engineer), Robert Caine (Staff Engineer), and Tyler Smith (Staff Scientist) presented with Heather Holdaway the University Recruiter for the East Coast. 

Booz Allen Hamilton offers locations all over the world. There are many opportunities available for employees to engage in community outreach and volunteering. In addition, Booz Allen offers a good work-life balance. Heather Holdaway was eager to share about the company culture. Booz Allen is purpose-driven and values based with focuses on leadership and a team environment. Employees are given resources and encouraged to continue to learn through benefits like tuition reimbursement and a program to pay back pre existing student loans. These benefits can be used to pursue graduate degrees, gain certifications, take classes and boot camps, and attend conferences.

Adam, Tyler, and Robert all shared about their experiences as Booz Allen employees. Adam spoke eagerly of Booz Allen’s commitment to his personal and professional growth. He shared that the most rewarding part of his job is the benefit his work offers to real people. Tyler has loved Booz Allen since being hired, and spoke fondly of the time he had to learn the tools available before being assigned to a project. Robert said “It has been great working here” at Booz Allen, because the company is very understanding and accommodating of your circumstances. 

Booz Allen Hamilton has both full time positions and summer internships available. Interested students are encouraged to apply at careers.boozallen.com/University. Heather Holdaway advised that if you are interested in a position, you should apply for it as soon as possible.

Thank you to presenters Heather Holdaway, Adam White, Robert Caine, and Tyler Smith for your informative and engaging presentation.

Tuesday Tea with Dr. Farideh Doost Mohammadi

On December 1, 2020, Tuesday Tea featured Dr. Farideh Doost Mohammadi, a professor here in Christopher Newport University’s department of Physics, Computer Science and Engineering. Dr. Mohammadi is from Tehran, the capital of Iran. She got her BS in electrical Engineering at the Iran University of Science and Technology, her MS in Electrical Engineering at the Amirkabir University of Technology, and she came to the United States to get her Ph D in Electrical Engineering at West Virginia University. 

Dr. Farideh Doost Mohammadi

Dr. Mohammadi reminisced about the differences between life in Tehran and here in the United States. Once a year in Iran, there was an entrance exam (students choose between engineering, medicine, or law) held for all students who wanted to attend university. All students who took the entrance exam were ranked, and this determined what universities they would be able to attend. Dr. Mohammadi chose to pursue engineering, because there were more options within the field and many of her family members are in electrical engineering. 

The difference between Iran and the United States extends beyond education. Dr. Mohammadi shared that she was shocked by the change of pace from Tehran where “everyone is running,” to the United States where things are calmer. She also spoke fondly of holidays she celebrated with family in Tehran like the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox.  She spoke of how mothers in Iran have a great skill for cooking, and when she was a kid her family always ate food at home rather than going out. Iran is famous for hospitality, and she shared that people will welcome you into their homes.

Dr. Mohammadi worked as a teaching assistant during her bachelors and masters program and found that she enjoyed teaching and wanted to stay in academia. However, becoming a university professor in Iran is much more difficult for women, so she came to the United States. Dr. Mohammadi likes Christopher Newport University for the connection between the university and industry and the focus on experimental and practical learning.  Dr. Mohammadi’s studies focus on power system controls and renewable power. 

Thank you to Dr. Mohammadi for sharing about her life and experiences.

Pizza My Mind Presented by NAVSEA

Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) presented Pizza My Mind on November 19, 2020. The Dahlgren Division protects the nation by designing and developing warfare systems and technologies. Dahlgren often teams with academia on research and supports continued education. Presenters Debbie Bardine and Barry Mohel shared about what Dahlgren has to offer.

There are many departments within Dahlgren including the Gun and Electric Weapon Systems Department. Within this department, there are opportunities to work with a variety of technologies like high energy lasers, an electromagnetic railgun, hyper-velocity projectiles, gun fire control software, and projectile fuzes. 

Dahlgren offers the ability to directly impact the lives and safety of our Nation’s military. They also bring great pay and benefits, flexible schedules, family friendly environments, and paid opportunities to continue your education, alongside a myriad of other benefits. The presenters were excited to share that they can go home every night knowing they are directly helping someone else’s life. 

Applicants to Dahlgren should showcase previous experience they have in the form of internships, projects, and leadership experience. At least a 3.0 GPA is expected, along with motivation and a good work ethic. No previous work experience is required, just a passion for learning.

For more information on career opportunities with NAVSEA, please visit https://www.navsea.navy.mil/Careers/NAVSEA-Careers/

Thank you so much to wonderful presenters Debbie Bardine and Barry Mohel.

Pizza My Mind Presented by Facebook

On November 12th, 2020, Sean McHugh, Software Developer at Facebook and VT alum, joined the Physics, Computer Science and Engineering Department to talk about the opportunities available at Facebook. Facebook consists of several apps including Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Facebook is headquartered in California, but has locations all around the world (including here in Virginia).

Sean McHugh interned at NIST, PolyTech, Amazon, and then Facebook. He has been a software engineer at Facebook since 2019. Sean works in Seattle on the payments care team. Facebook offices come with a lot of cool features including a rock climbing wall, a music room, three meals a day, and so much more.

Facebook offers internships in the spring, summer, and fall. The interview process consists of 3 phone interviews. Good ways to stand out in the interview process are showing off personal projects and research, prior internship experience, clubs, and school projects. Sean shared tips on interview success. To prepare for interviews, students should do practice problems. These can be found on FireCode.io, LeetCode, and in books. Mock whiteboarding is another good way to prepare and practice answering questions. 

More information can be found at www.facebook.com/careers/

Thank you to Sean McHugh for his informative presentation!