Intern Series: From MongoDB User to Return Intern - Meet Andy Mina

Natalie Chwalk

#campusrecruiting

Andy Mina is a rising senior at the City University of New York. Last summer, Andy interned with us during the COVID-19 pandemic and impressed us enough to receive a return intern offer. He is currently working on the Node.js Driver Team, where he’s partnering with a fellow intern to revamp the program’s error system. Despite working remotely, Andy has made the most of his experience at MongoDB by engaging in meaningful work and forging lasting connections with his teammates. In this interview, you will hear about everything Andy has taken away from his two summers at MongoDB.

Natalie Chwalk: Hey, Andy! I know you've been programming for a long time. Is that how you first learned about MongoDB?

Andy Mina: I started programming in high school. I would make websites for school programs, local businesses, and every idea that popped into my head. The size of my projects began to grow, and the need for a database became very clear. MongoDB Atlas was unveiled around that time, and I gave it a shot. Since then, MongoDB has become my best friend for any programming adventure I embark on. While searching for summer internships my sophomore year of college, I wondered if MongoDB had any open positions — and, to my delight, it did. I was excited to give back to the community and product that had helped me so much already.

NC: That's awesome! Why did you decide to intern with us?

AM: As a programmer who has used MongoDB in my personal projects, I was stoked at the opportunity to contribute to the community. I enjoyed using MongoDB for projects, and I knew I’d enjoy working at MongoDB too. When I interviewed on-site for the final round, the future was clear: I wanted to intern here. I fell in love with the consistently welcoming people, the impact interns can make with their projects, and the company values because they mirrored my own. The office atmosphere and MongoDB’s work-life balance were also really appealing. I interned at MongoDB last summer and fell even more in love with the company, so I knew I had to return this summer.

What's your favorite thing you've done at MongoDB?

AM: I’m currently working on revamping the error system in the Node.js Driver. Previously, the driver threw only one general-purpose error with a message detailing where things went wrong. Warren, a fellow intern on the team, and I were tasked with coming up with a better error system for the entire driver. I really appreciate the independence the project has given us because the decisions we’re making contribute to the future of the driver. We’ve introduced new errors and we’re still refining everything so developers who use the driver can quickly identify and resolve issues in their code.

NC: Wow! I'm so glad to hear you've felt empowered to do such meaningful work. Can you tell me a bit more about your team?

AM: I’m interning on the Node.js Driver team, and I love it. The Node.js Driver is the official interface for JavaScript developers to take advantage of MongoDB. I used the Node.js Driver pretty regularly before joining MongoDB, so it’s a full-circle experience to come work on the product I’ve used. My current mentor, Neal, is amazing. He’s the best thing since sliced bread, and he’s one of the best mentors I’ve ever had. Plus, the team is super friendly and extremely passionate about the work they do, so it's a win-win.

NC: What is the culture like at MongoDB?

AM: In three words: exciting, inspiring, and, most importantly, really fun.

It's so good to hear you've had a positive experience here. To close, what is your favorite part about interning at MongoDB?

AM: MongoDB really cares about its interns. I’ve never felt like I was doing “intern work” or like I was a fly on the wall during team meetings. One of MongoDB’s core values is, “Make it matter,” and that definitely shines throughout the intern program. My favorite part about working at MongoDB is that interns are just as valued as full-time employees. I’ve been given impactful work that can make change.

MongoDB’s summer intern events are also the best! I’ve made some good friends through intern events such as a virtual escape room, arts and crafts, and even a chocolate-making class. Besides the events, the speaker series MongoDB holds throughout the summer is super insightful. Everyone who has spoken so far has shared great career and even life advice. It’s also especially cool to hear that many full-time employees were previously interns!

Interested in interning at MongoDB? Our 2021/2022 Software Engineering Summer Internship for the US is now live and accepting applications for students