Alumni Features: Marzyeh

Meet Marzyeh - Extreme Blue Technical Intern

Marzyeh was an Extreme Blue™ technical intern in Austin, TX. She has since graduated from New Mexico State University with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Marzyeh is originally from Las Cruces, NM. She has worked as a Verification Intern for IBM in the past, where she completed a project related to cell processors on memory verification in C++.

Why do you think you were selected for the Extreme Blue internship?

Technical skills are a given for Extreme Blue and are needed to make it through the extensive interview process. I feel that several qualities distinguished me from others who may have the same knowledge level. I always emphasize leadership, adaptability, innovation, persistence, and teamwork in any group that I have participated in, which I feel has led me to be a more effective and effectual individual.

Briefly describe what your day-to-day activities and responsibilities included.

Extreme Blue was a crazy combination of business and technology; every day I had to consider both aspects of my project and adjust as necessary. Some time out of every day was scheduled for meetings. These are typically meetings with IBM employees, mentors, executives and technical leads. From these individuals, I learned about the views and implications that our daily project decisions impact. Another activity that happens frequently was a "pitch session". Whether I was practicing for the other individuals in my lab, or pitching to a visiting executive, I had to be able to sell the product I was creating to anyone at any time. All remaining time was devoted to actual design and development. Design of the project was my most important task because there is no good implementation from a poor design. During the first few weeks, the project's preliminary decisions were made with regard to the design, scope, and implementation details, and now we have a working demonstration of our Tier I goals. However, because we followed an iterative development model, every day brought new challenges that highlight how my team could excel.

As a technical intern, what impact did the business intern have on you?

The biggest change that the business focus of Extreme Blue made on me is that I now see every technology as a product. I have learned that it's not good enough to have the best product; you have to know how to tell others that your product is best! The ability to sell your product is a skill second only to the ability to create your product. My impact as a technical leader has been focused by my ability to promote innovative ideas.

Were there any surprises about this commitment?

The biggest surprise I have found is the speed with which the summer has passed. We were reminded by our mentor that every passing day is 2% of our time here.

How did your experiences prepared you for the Extreme Blue experience?

As an Electrical Engineering/Computer Science major, I had a large array of technical skills that have prepared me for the challenges that I experienced in Extreme Blue every day. Because I have worked in technology jobs since I began attending college at fifteen, I was very comfortable with the technical side of my job.