Companies receive hundreds if not thousands of CVs a day. Securing an
internship at a recognised company which shares a similar vision and which
provides ample opportunity for growth makes candidates more competitive in
the job market. Internships allow students to gain exposure and experience
in the field, they also allow them to decide what type of companies are a
good fit for them which is equally as important. Many internships lead to
permanent jobs, and even if they don’t, internship experience from a top
company within your field will help you stand out.
We spoke to a few more of our final year female students currently doing their internships. We found out what their internship experience has been like thus far as well as their views on the role of women in IT and their hopes for the future.
Tanya de Jager is currently doing her internship at Entelect. Entelect is an enterprise software development company that provides customised software solutions. They have offices in Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town and the Netherlands. “It has been an amazing year and I am very happy at the company. I have learnt more than I could imagine, I learn something new every day,” Ms. de Jager shares. Ms. de Jager believes that more women in the IT field would bring a new perspective, diversity and balance to the field which can only lead to improvement in the way IT projects are approached, since a larger target audience can be reached. “It is quite new for women to excel in environments previously seen as predominantly male and I feel the more these women get celebrated, the more young ladies will be inspired to try their hand in the IT field,” she says.
On completion of her internship, Ms. de Jager hopes to work towards becoming an intermediate/senior software engineer. “Eventually I hope to find myself in a team lead position where I can deal with both the technical and the human interaction aspect of the job,” she comments.
“We want a lot more female Bill Gates,” comments Sharon Reitumetse Pitsoane who is currently doing her internship at Accenture, a multinational professional services company which provides services in digital, operations, technology, strategy, and consulting. Ms. Pitsoane believes that Accenture provides an environment filled with opportunities to not only learn new skills, but also to grow as an individual. “I have met and worked with different people who lead a truly human life and practice the, ‘ask for help and help when asked’ culture. As a result, I have been able to learn a lot and grow rapidly in a short period of time,” she says.
Ms. Pitsoane has never let gender stereotypes affect her, even from a young age she was defying them. “When only boys played computer games and only girls played with dolls, I did both. Being like this from a young age allowed me to pursue a career in IT without being discouraged by societal beliefs,” she shares.
Once she receives her qualification, Ms. Pitsoane’s main focus will be uplifting young black women and helping them to see their full potential, unleash their creativity and fuel their innovative minds. “I want to help them invest in their future and education so that we can work towards completely closing the gender inequality gap in IT and engineering fields. This will consequently reduce the high unemployment rate and improve the economic growth of South Africa,” she says.
Tsungai Robyn Musanda is currently doing her internship at Expeditus, a business intelligence consultancy company based in Bryanston. The company strives to drive businesses forward and ensure long term success by providing insight and measurable value. “My experience has been nothing short of amazing! The team was so welcoming and the company puts a lot of effort into the personal growth of its employees which makes working here a delight. The company also has partnerships with a number of diverse companies which I have had the opportunity to be exposed to. This has increased my knowledge of the different companies out there and how they operate,” she shares.
Ms. Musanda did not struggle to integrate into the world of work and she says this is due to the education she received at Belgium Campus. “Belgium Campus equipped me more than adequately for my internship. I was able to cope with the stress that comes with the working world and meet deadlines easily and even though I didn’t study BI as a subject, I was able to use database and other subjects I was taught that relate to the field. Belgium Campus’ IT focus means you can put all your attention into perfecting your craft, which puts you one step further than most IT students,” she shares.
In the future, Ms. Musanda sees herself owning her own IT companies while being a senior consultant or in a managerial position at a leading BI company.