Introducing WayUp’s Top Intern of 2021 – Maria Sitkovets | Job and Internship Advice, Companies to Work for and More

At WayUp, we have helped a wide range of young professionals achieve everything from internships to management positions, in any industry you can imagine. From biotechnology to engineering, we have seen it all, in every tier of the platform. Over the years we have helped these young professionals and current students find work, we have become quite modest about how impressive they are all the time. Because of this, we decided to make a list of the top 100 interns to celebrate the praise of these fine people

Using a long list of criteria and a well-researched points system, we created a scoring mechanism that would help rank potential candidates. This mechanism takes into account things just like academic success, professional fitness, ingenuity and more.

This year, after reviewing an incredibly talented list of people, we finally chose our winner for the 2021 Senior Internship – Maria Sitkovets of York University. We recently met Maria to get a little more insight into how she grew herself to be such an established professional and to provide you with some information on how to be truly exceptional as well.

WU: How / why did you choose York University – the School of Disaster Engineering?

Mrs: Honestly, choosing York University was actually the only option I thought I had at the time because I did not have the money to go anywhere else. Money is something my family has never had, so I knew going to school or even applying to many schools (which, by the way, also costs a lot of money) was not on the card for me. York was close to home and I felt comfortable applying to him because my older brother also went there. I’m really grateful for the opportunity to get a post-secondary education in general, and York was a great choice for me to do that because our engineering department is so new and creative in the way they teach us.

WU: Why did you choose to specialize in computer science?

Mrs: In fact, I did not! When I applied for university I was sure I would pursue biology and enrolled in only two biological majors and the general engineering major because I had to apply for three. I eventually decided to go into engineering because I thought it was more challenging and creative than going down a binding path like I thought I would be if I studied biology. But in my first month of school, I attended a party that Shopify held at the campus engineering building and found out about the new program we called Shopify Dev Degree. The only catch was having to be in computer science to do that. So after applying, I went through the interview process and finally got the offer, I was eventually forced to change my trend in the second semester. It was 100% the right choice for me because computer science is something I loved so much. I love the theory courses I take in school and I love the practical software development I can do in Shopify. I never imagined myself in this field, but now I can not wait to spend my career in learning and explore more of it.

WU: How did you achieve your specialization in Twitch and Shopify?

Mrs: Well now you know how I found out about Shopify but I honestly do not know how I got in. I think they saw “potential” in me (even though I actually knew nothing at the time). As for Twitch, I wrote an entire Medium article about the whole interview process but that was again the case. I found that some of my friends who were looking for an internship did the coding assessment from Twitch and they all told me how much fun it was compared to the others they saw. I was really jealous of them and wanted to give it a try so I applied for the internship program to see if I could do it too. And somehow someone thought I had potential too and I got a recruitment call and from there things went on!

WU: 2 specializations this summer are very impressive – how do you stay organized and focused while managing both?

Mrs: I think my mom would call it crazy, actually. I would not recommend it to anyone but for me it felt like the right thing at the time and I do not regret it at all so I have to say something. Since my internship at Shopify is part-time all year, I worked in the morning at Shopify (8: 00-12: 00) in data engineering, and then because Twitch is on the West Coast and I on the East Coast I worked afternoons / evenings at Twitch (12 : 30-20: 30) do software engineering. I also took an online anthropology course I did on the weekends. I think a lot of people cared about me but it was mostly okay. I did get burned for a few weeks in July because of the combination of work and a few personal things but I think overall, it was not terrible. And I think what helped me stay organized was make a lot of notes and make notes.

WU: Have you had any mentors during your career? How has this person affected you?

Mrs: A lot of people were my guides. I look at every team member I have, every manager, every prime minister, every designer and every intern I have come across. I think you can always learn something from someone else because everyone is always better than you at something. Some of the great mentors I have had were the ones assigned to me in my specializations because of how much time and effort they put into making sure I study. I will still always hold my first tutor (Yuri) as the standard of what a good mentor should be because I went into an internship as a baby and 8 months later I felt like an engineer. His goal for me was that by the end of those 8 months he would be able to say he would hire me as a full time engineer and it really made my heart explode when he said I had achieved that goal.

WU: What is your dream job?

Mrs: I think I’m still lost from it because I can not even choose what I like between the side of the product or the platform of things. But the ideal job would be a job where I could use my nerdy love of networks and algorithms and software development (in programming languages ​​I love) all together. But this is just a theory I have not yet gotten to try so who knows what in the end I like.

WU: What advice do you have for other interns?

Mrs: I know working in companies with shiny names may sound nice but that should not be your ultimate goal or what you aspire to do in life. Go to places where you can study. If something is threatening, then subscribe to it. Failed in things. Exceed your limits. But most importantly, enjoy (whatever it looks like to you)!

Give an example

Maria embodies what it means to be a phenomenal worker from one end of the spectrum to the other. We hope it will serve as a symbol and inspiration for you to be amazing as well. With a mentality and hunger like hers, anything is possible.

Congratulations Maria! We can not wait to see what you do next. Take a look at WayUp’s top specialty competition coming back in 2022!


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