From managing marketing campaigns and online sales for a local startup to developing real-world software solutions, performing computational research at the Czech Academy of Sciences in the Czech Republic to liaising between a congressman and his local constituents, Lyon College upperclassmen do more than understand the dilemma that plagues them: “You can’t get experience without a job, but you can’t get a job without experience.” They overcome it.
This year, sixteen Lyon students shared their summer experiences, including jobs, internships, academic travel, and research, with the campus community at the Summer Experience Fair on September 18.
Through the Summer Experience Fair (SEF), the Lyon College Career Center aims to shed light on the process of finding and pursuing opportunities so that its students graduate with the experience necessary to pursue their preferred futures.
This year’s winner of the SEF, Thiago Reis, is a senior pursuing a double major in economics and computer science and a soccer player from Brazil. He interned at the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission headquarters in software development and information technology, where he developed software to increase the efficiency of online sales and job applications.
When asked about Thiago’s internship, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Chief Information Officer Tony Davis, an alumnus and adjunct computer science professor at Lyon, said: “Thiago was definitely not your typical intern. We realized immediately that Thiago had the initiative and drive that is lacking in some interns today and gave him a project that continues to have a major impact. Thiago not only learned what it is like to be on a development team but actually put his training and coding skills into action.”
Reis wrote the first automated regression test scripts for the state's hunting and fishing license system. This system is responsible for over $25 million in transactions and is used by over 375 license dealers, including all Walmart locations in Arkansas. No updates or code changes to this system occur unless they successfully pass the test scenarios in his script. “Thiago took a two-hour process prone to human error and cut it down to less than 15 minutes, saving the taxpayers money and providing our agency with confidence that the system will continue to function. We are so impressed with Thiago that we are trying to get him to return this winter as a full-time developer,” said Davis.
Reis won a $1,000.00 scholarship prize for his presentation at the Summer Experience Fair. Other presenters included Eric Moses, sophomore (Business major); Jared Self, senior (Political Science and Economics double major); Savannah Youngblood, junior (Elementary Education major); Justas Narusus, senior (Computer Science major); Rebecca Philpott, senior (Biology and Chemistry double major); Brittany Northern, senior (Biology major); Cheyenne Kellum, senior (Business major); Makala White, senior (Biology); Ethan Wisdom, sophomore (Mathematics major, pre-engineering concentration); John Sifford, senior (Biology major); ShaNae Snow, junior (Psychology major); Ian Hall, senior (Chemistry and Biology double major); Jordan Trant, junior (Biology, Chemistry, and Mathematics triple major); and Cody Richardson, senior (Anthropology major).
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