Meet the Aruba Interns: Njabulo Ndlovu

By Sylvia Ruiz, University HR Programs Manager
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Sylvia: Tell me a little bit about yourself.

NJ Ndlovu Aruba Intern

NJ: I’ve always been fascinated by technology and the endless possibilities it brings. Not having done any programming in high school, I had a lot of catching up to do in my first year at university. My experience was very different than most people who learned programming in high school. I even didn’t own a laptop at the time, so I spent most of my evenings at the library watching countless tutorials on YouTube. Learning motivated me and kept me going. I found that the more time I devoted to learning the easier it became to grasp concepts during lectures.

I graduate in August with a double-major in computer science and statistics from the University of the Western Cape in Cape Town, South Africa.

What makes you passionate about technology? 

I believe through technology we can help accelerate the growth and development of Africa, as in most parts of Africa, technology is still seen as the next big thing. Though it’s not the answer to all of our problems, I think it puts us in a better position in the fight against poverty.

Why did you choose an internship at Aruba?

When Aruba came to campus, I didn’t know the company. I spoke to them and the people there were super-nice. I went back to my room and researched the company. The website was very neat and featured cool new technology they were working on at the time, plus it was a company from the States.

We work in the offices where Cape Networks was started.

What are your key responsibilities for your internship?

When I started in November 2019, we were a team of four interns. We worked on a platform to help better manage subscription data. It was very cool. We had freedom over the project. The senior developers didn’t say “Do it this way.” They would say “Here’s a better approach or have you tried this?”

I moved onto a second project that aims to simplify the process of on-boarding customers to use SSO.

You worked in the Cape Town offices as well as remotely. How does having a virtual internship change the experience for you? 

Working from home has changed things a little bit. For instance, I can’t go call people from their work station to come and help me with whatever I’m struggling with. It is now my responsibility to make sure that I fully understand a problem before sending someone a Slack message. So overall, I’d say it has made me somewhat a bit more self-efficient as a developer.

What do you like about Aruba’s corporate culture?

Aruba’s corporate culture blew my mind. The work environment is a delight. Everyone is welcoming and friendly. In the Cape Town office, people are very open and the space is comfortable.

And, Aruba offers lunch every Friday!

What is your ideal future career path?

I’m not really sure, I’d like to end as maybe a CTO someday. As much as I think having a managerial position is cool but I still want to be able to write code every day.

What tips would you provide to students applying for internships next year?

Apply for everything, even if you don’t think you qualify. Put yourself out there. You don’t have to be great, as long as you are consistently good that’s all that matters. Also, being a nice person goes a long way.

I recently spoke to Gabrielle Talavera, who is an intern in the Roseville, CA office of Aruba. Her question to you is: What would be your biggest tip for overcoming barriers when it comes to your career and the feelings of impostor syndrome?

Just be a nice person and do whatever task you are given to the best of your abilities. Even when you don’t feel confident, I find that often times the best solution to overcome anxiety is to just keep going.

If you could ask another Aruba intern anything, what would it be?

There is quite a lot I’d want to know, especially the difference between interning in the US versus in Africa. But my question is: Do you find the work you do at Aruba meaningful?

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