Timothy Schultz (January 2022 – August 2022)
Name: Timothy Schultz
School: University of Missouri – St. Louis
Major: Computer Science
Co-op period: January 2022 – August 2022
What was the interview process like?
I was encouraged to apply for a Computer Science Co-Op position after meeting with an HR member during the University of Missouri -St. Louis virtual career fair. Shortly after, I was contacted to schedule an interview with Mike Douglas. Mike talked about previous Co-Op research projects and the projects I listed on my resume. I also learned about the balancer product line. One week later, I was extended an offer for the position.
Most students just want experience, but they may not know what type of experience they want. Please describe some of the work you did and what type of skills you needed. It is important to note the skills you could apply from what you’ve learned in school and what you learned on the job.
I continued work on research done by previous Co-Ops, wrote code for new features, and learned/worked with Hunter’s Quality Assurance system to fix bugs. These tasks required skills that developed through both course work and on the Co-Op. The skills that I came into the Co-Op with were an understanding of programming language syntax, how to operate the Linux terminal, understanding the proper data structures to use, and how to develop efficient algorithms. Some skills that I developed on the Co-Op were how to navigate a large code base, understanding other’s code, how to properly implement bug fixes, proper documentation, and good programming practices.
What experience do you think will be the most useful for you in the future?
The experience in research, implementation of user stories, and bug fixes will prove invaluable when applying to future school projects and in the software engineering profession.
How do you think the overall experience will help you in your career?
This Co-Op experience allowed me to work in a professional environment, learn the proper way to implement bug fixes in a large code base, and develop key software engineering skills.
What aspect of the work did you enjoy the most?
I enjoyed being given the opportunity to work with talented Engineers that fostered a positive learning environment.
What aspect of the work did you not enjoy?
There was nothing about this Co-Op experience that I did not enjoy.
Did you learn anything?
During my Co-Op experience, I learned how to navigate a large code base, the importance of seeing a problem from all angles, to focus on the user experience, the proper way to implement a bug fix, proper programming documentation, and best programming practices.
Students often want to know if they will work alone or in a group. Was the work you did more individual or group work, and how does it compare with what you have done in school or at another job?
The majority of the time I was assigned tasks to work on by myself. There were larger projects that a fellow Co-Op and I worked together on. In my course work, I have had only a few group projects and they proved difficult at times. My group work at Hunter was interesting and enjoyable.
What were your living arrangements during co-op? This question is especially important for those that are not from St. Louis.
I am from the St. Louis metropolitan area. I had a 35-minute commute from my home in Wentzville, MO.
How was the supervision?
Mike Douglas was always there to answer questions and give guidance when you encountered a challenging problem.
Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself, Hunter Engineering, the co-op program or the work?
This was an excellent experience and I could not recommend it enough for students looking to gain valuable experience in software engineering.