Intern Spotlight: Alex Kleiman

This year, MongoDB welcomed 33 university students to our intern program in Engineering, Marketing and Education. In this series, we'll introduce you to the talented students who are helping us transform development and operations for how we run applications today.

We had the chance to sit down with Alex Kleiman, who is working on the Kernel team on the pluggable storage engine and RocksDB integration that will ship in MongoDB 2.8

What is your role at MongoDB?

I am a software engineering intern on the kernel team. I’m working on pluggable storage engines. The idea is to enable engineers to swap out different storage engines in MongoDB.

How did you find out about the internship program at MongoDB? Why did you choose to come to MongoDB?

I attended a career fair. I was really attracted to the fact that most of the engineering work is open source. I also liked that the company is creating a product which is constantly changing in exciting ways. The people that I talked to during my interviews seemed really nice, exciting, and smart.

What’s your hometown?

Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia.

Did you have previous experience using MongoDB before you arrived? If so, how are things different now that you work at MongoDB? If not, how did you learn MongoDB?

I didn’t have any previous experience with MongoDB. I am working on the Kernel team, so I don’t really work with MongoDB, but rather I build on top of the server.

Bike or public transportation to work?

Public Transport.

What’s a typical day (or week) for you?

Hop on the subway, I normally code most of the day. There is a team meeting at 11am and then Lunch, Dinner, home.

What do you love most about MongoDB?

I love the challenge. I’m really happy with the level at which I’ve been challenged. The things I have to do are not easy and I mean that in the best possible sense.

What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?

Fending off all the fans and paparazzi. In addition, the nature of my project is making code that is very specific toward one goal: making MongoDB flexible and adaptable. That is a hard thing to do in general, made easier by MongoDB engineers.

What do you hope to accomplish while you’re here?

I’d like to finish my project. I’d also like to get Berkeley DB incorporated as a storage engine in MongoDB. And of course I want to keep growing as a computer scientist.

What’s your favorite Seamless lunch order?

Anything that leaves me with leftovers for dinner.

Name one secret skill you have, unrelated to work.

NONE. [Laughter]

What’s your favorite rap album?

Illmatic by Nas. In addition to having perfect flow, the lyrics are incredible and do a fantastic job of giving a sense of what his life is like.

Kindle or book? What’s your favorite book?

I prefer reading books, but I try to save paper by using a Kindle. My favorite book is A Lesson Before Dying.

Describe your perfect weekend.

On Saturday morning I would read the newspaper, then I would go outside and read something else for a couple of hours. At night I would go see a Biggie Smalls, Nas, Jay-Z, Lauryn Hill, and Tupac concert that was completely non-holographic. Then on Sunday I would go to Yankee stadium, hangout in the locker room, sit in the dugout, and watch the Yankees win game Seven of the World Series. After that I would watch the Eagles win the Super Bowl.

Want to help build the next revolution in database technology? MongoDB offers summer internships and new graduate opportunities to foster computer science talent across the country. Learn more about the MongoDB University Relations program.

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