Interning at SealingTech: Two Insiders’ Tales


SealingTech’s Internship Program takes place over the course of 11 weeks from May to August. This past year, two talented computer engineers were selected to participate in the summer 2017 program and became a part of SealingTech’s legacy. Here are their tales:

 

The Project

SealingTech’s 2017 Summer Internship Program, was designed around an internal R&D project which explored how Network Function Virtualization (NFV), Software Defined Networking (SDN) and other advanced technologies can be used to build out a defensive platform for Network Monitoring, Log Management and Automated Network Defense. The project also explored the state of technology to understand the possibilities currently available for using virtualized and containerized platforms by utilizing open source software including: Kubernetes, Docker Containers, SR-IOV, Open V-Switch, and Network Load Balancing solutions. The result was a virtualized cyber operations platform that is now being marketed to the Department of Defense. Check out our GitHub page!

 

 

The Interview Process

[Markus]
“After the general spiel of Human Resources giving information about the company, I was prepared to get one of the hardest technical questions I’ve ever had in an interview. With my luck, I was going to sit down and have a conversation with a senior network engineer and get questioned on information that I may or may not know. In which case I did, but it didn’t go the way in which I expected. I wasn’t necessarily getting questions on what the difference between what a router or a switch was, but instead, having a legitimate conversation on my passion to learn networking technologies. The engineer wasn’t looking to know how much I knew, but the reason I wanted to know and what I would do to find out the information. It was exhilarating knowing that someone had the same interest and passion that I did. I Promise you, there’s more that goes on with a packet during a ping request!”
[Michael]
“When I first applied online, I didn’t know that much about SealingTech, but I loved the idea of Systems Engineering and Cybersecurity, so I took a shot and landed an interview. After bribing my friend to drop me off at the building, I was surprised at how relaxed and updated the building felt because I was used to seas of cubicles at my prior internships. The building was the complete opposite of everything I had experienced, and I was pleasantly surprised at the fun, light-hearted atmosphere. The interview itself wasn’t extremely technical, but more geared toward finding the right person to fit into the team. I had a nice conversation with our Human Resources manager and Systems Administrator, and they gave me useful information for learning more and getting involved outside of work. I felt at home from the moment I stepped into the building, and I’ve been loving it ever since!”

 

So, What Do SealingTech Interns Do All Day?

[Markus]
“We learn, we break, we fix. There were numerous times we had to rebuild each of the four servers due to testing or an error we couldn’t figure out. Granted, each time I installed ‘Nano’ after every OS re-install (Sorry Vim users). Each day we were hit with challenges we weren’t expecting. We were avid subscribers to a variety of Kubernetes forums, Docker forums, Sub-Reddits and even the voices from our various mentors. However, that didn’t stop us from completing and getting over the obstacles that were brought upon us. When it comes to networking and figuring out how everything is connected, white boarding is an excellent skill to learn.”
[Michael]
“Interning at SealingTech was really fun because we had our primary project to accomplish, but we also had tons of other things to do to help other people. Markus and myself were given free reign over the project, so we really made it into something we were proud of by the time we were finished. Aside from building, breaking, and fixing our project, we were up for any challenge that was thrown at us, including the odd errand every now and then that always turned into an adventure.”

 

Company Culture

[Markus]
Most of the time, employees don’t generally get the opportunity to meet the CEO of the company, let alone interns.  Getting to sit and chat with the CEO of any company as an intern is usually unheard of. On day one, we were both introduced to Ed Sealing, CEO of SealingTech, and conversed with him about the technologies and resources we had at our fingertips in the lab. He isn’t just a leader, but he’s also one of the engineers of the company and is willing to get his hands dirty when the time comes.  Our mentors, were also very knowledgeable in the topics of virtualization and various information assurance subjects.”
[Michael]
The culture at SealingTech is probably my favorite aspect because talking to other employees in person and via Slack feels like hanging out with a group of friends. Our CEO, Ed, is super friendly and I didn’t even realize I was talking to the CEO on my first day because he was so eager to learn about us and find out our feelings about the project. I don’t think you’ll find a CEO in any other company who really cares about his employees as much as Ed does because he makes a huge effort to connect to everyone in the company. Between the friendly atmosphere, quality memes, and learning opportunities, SealingTech is perfect for college students ready to start their career in the IT world.”

 

Life After SealingTech

[Markus]
“Out of all the opportunities that were given to us, the experience that Sealing Technologies presented both of us was invaluable.  I had the chance to utilize the information that was learned from school, and apply it to real-world applications. It is amazing to know that the project that we worked on during the internship has real-world potential. Not a lot of interns from other organizations get the opportunity to say that they worked on a project that would come to fruition and be of use to the company. I for one, as well as Michael, am proud to know that we designed a capability from the ground up. Sure, the Internship ended for me at the end of the summer, however, my full-time employment was just about to begin at SealingTech.”
[Michael]
“Besides the incredible culture, the second best part about this internship is that it didn’t have to end when the summer was over and I’m proud to say Markus and myself are still enjoying our time here! At the end of the program, Markus and I underwent a final evaluation where we discussed our successes as well as areas upon which we could improve. My final evaluation was very positive, and I was able to stay on part time while I finish up my degree at the University of Maryland. Everybody has been extremely helpful and super accommodating towards my schedule, which shows you how invested they are in the growth of all of their employees. I think the best part about staying with SealingTech has been being able to see our project mature into something even the Department of Defense is interested in.”

 

Your Turn!

At a typical Internship, you would generally be doing grunt work and fetching coffee for your manager. That wasn’t the case at SealingTech. From acquiring 12 server racks, to recording a training montage with your mentor spouting ‘firewalls, firewalls, firewalls’, and even standing up a horizontally scalable network perimeter defense; our time at SealingTech was invaluable. But don’t just take our word for it, if you are looking for an engaging and challenging internship in the engineering field, we encourage you to click here to see the opportunities SealingTech is offering this summer!

 

 

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