Part 1: From Intern to Innovator

Part 1: From Intern to Innovator

We follow Daniel’s intern journey at WeFi…

Daniel Garza (20) is the very first recipient of the Nicholas Feinstein Technology Internship Scholarship – awarded annually to one of the University of Northern Colorado’s top business and technology students. 

Daniel touched down in Cape Town at the beginning of June for two months, to work (and learn) alongside the team at our Stellenbosch-based WeFi Innovation Hub. 

How’s it going? 

‘So far, so good’ he says here…

First impressions of South Africa?

South Africa so far has been great! I haven’t gotten out too much since I was sick for a weekend, but when I did venture out to Cape Town it was a lot of fun. The city is vibrant and full of energy, and the view of the mountains and the ocean was just fantastic. The people I’ve met have been very friendly and welcoming, which has made the experience even more enjoyable. I am looking forward to exploring more of the culture and natural beauty that South Africa has to offer during my time here.

Describe your average day at the WeFi Innovation Hub. What have you been working on?

For my first two weeks at the WeFi Innovation Hub, my average workday has been both exciting and educational. I have been spending a fair amount of time delving into the company’s operations and learning more about the projects that they’re currently involved in. I’ve also been prototyping the logic for the project I will be working on. This involves a lot of research and development to understand the best technical approaches. A significant part of my work, as of now, involves scoping the feasibility of a specific technical route that we are considering for the project. This includes evaluating different technologies, experimenting and analysing data to ensure that our chosen path will be effective. It is a mix of problem-solving and technical analysis, which I find very engaging. Overall, my work with the WeFi Innovation team has been a great experience so far and I am excited about the contributions I can make as we move forward with the project.

What does this internship mean to you? When/how did you find out that you’d been selected for it?

This internship with WeFi means a great deal to me, as it represents a milestone in my journey to becoming a software engineer. It is an amazing opportunity to apply the knowledge I have gained in my Software Engineering and Mathematics curriculum at UNC to real-world projects. 

If I recall correctly, I believe I had first found out that I had been selected for this internship sometime in late March. Then in early April, I received the formal written offer from WeFi.

What are you hoping to gain from this experience?

From this internship, I am hoping to gain a comprehensive set of skills and experiences that will contribute to my growth as an upcoming software engineer. I aim to enhance my technical abilities and learn new frameworks and languages that are essential in the industry. Building a network of professional contacts and establishing relationships with experienced mentors is another goal of mine. Their guidance will be invaluable as I navigate my career path.

We’re excited to see what Daniel learns and accomplishes during his time at WeFi. Be sure to check back next week for another update.

Follow Daniel’s journey with us on LinkedIn:

Click here for more about the Nicholas Feinstein Technology Internship Scholarship, and read how one honouring one young man’s legacy has led to a life-changing opportunity for another.

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