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Photo by Emma Matthews Digital Content Production on Unsplash

I would describe my internships as one of the experiences that have highlighted my collegiate career. From the recruiting process, to the summers spent working for different companies, I have learnt a lot of things that have helped me not only in my job search but also personally made me a better human.

Here are the five things that I have learnt over the years, which I hope will help you in your internship search.

1. Your resume determines a lot on how far you get in the interviewing process.

When I began applying for internships, I remember submitting my resume to job application sites only to get a rejection a few hours later if not instantly. This was always such a bummer and it led me to consider dropping the whole internship search because I felt I was not qualified. During this time, as a last resort I had decided to send my resume to a friend for review and their feedback really helped with revamping my resume. I got to learn that for one the structure of your resume is very important. Moreover, the choice of words that you use in your resume can help in bringing out your strengths or sadly make you come off as a weak candidate. Therefore, it is important to take time in ensuring that your resume is structured and edited well enough. …

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Photo by Alexis Fauvet on Unsplash

I began this year very excited and happy celebrating the end of the previous year which for me had been so hard, and overwhelming. The fact that I also celebrate my birthday on new years made it even more exciting. I felt like I was turning over a new leaf! Part of me was so hopeful and so energetic about planning for and finally starting to accomplish some of my goals, which unfortunately I had not achieved in 2020.

It has been fifteen days into 2021, and like many others I have been following the news as well as the current happenings. I have found myself contemplating many times whether this year is going to be any different from last year. See, the end of last year was filled with a lot of hope and good news: from the roll-out of the covid vaccine, to the beginning of school resumption for most countries(Students in my home country Kenya had been forced to stay at home for 9 months last year, so it was definitely a relief that they were resuming), to the winning of the presidency by Joe Biden after a long four years. All this events showed that potentially 2021, would be the year when most of us get to revive our dreams and start accomplishing them. …

How to solve the Happy numbers problem using Python

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Photo by Nick Hillier on Unsplash

The question:

Write an algorithm to determine if a number n is happy.

A happy number is a number defined by the following process:

Starting with any positive integer, replace the number by the sum of the squares of its digits.

Repeat the process until the number equals 1 (where it will stay), or it loops endlessly in a cycle which does not include 1.

Those numbers for which this process ends in 1 are happy.

Return true if n is a happy number, and false if not.

We are given an example of how the output should look…

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Photo by Fotis Fotopoulos on Unsplash

The Question

Given an integer n, return true if it is a power of two. Otherwise, return false.

An integer n is a power of two, if there exists an integer x such that n == 2x.

We are given a couple of examples to demonstrate how the output should look like:

Example 1:

Input: n = 1
Output: true
Explanation: 20 = 1

Example 2:

Input: n = 16
Output: true
Explanation: 24 = 16

Example 3:

Input: n = 3
Output: false

This is a leetcode easy question, hence it is expected that you should easily find an optimal solution for this problem. …

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Photo by Israel Andrade on Unsplash

If you are in a career in technology, you have probably faced this dilemma when it comes to which company to work for.

People often find it hard to turn down an offer from a big tech company over a startup that people do not even know about. In fact most people prefer to work at either one of the big tech companies say, Facebook, Apple, Amazon or Google. A hot new startup like Zoom for instance, is also becoming a favorite choice for people when it comes to choosing which company to work for. …

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Photo by Hitesh Choudhary on Unsplash

The Question:

Given an array nums with n objects colored red, white, or blue, sort them in-place so that objects of the same color are adjacent, with the colors in the order red, white, and blue.

Here, we will use the integers 0, 1, and 2 to represent the color red, white, and blue respectively.

We are given a follow up and told to solve this problem without using the library’s sort function and also whether we can up with a one-pass algorithm using only 0(1) constant space.

Here is an example of how the output should look like once solved

Input: nums = [2,0,2,1,1,0]

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Photo by Teigan Rodger on Unsplash

The Dream

We all have companies that we so bad want to work at or even intern at. For me, Google, Microsoft or Facebook was that company. I know what you’re thinking about haha, of course it had to be one of the big tech companies. Well, we are all allowed to dream ain’t we?

The Zeal

My dream to work in one of these companies propelled me to spend my time preparing so hard for their interviews and applications. I diligently took the time to practice the coding challenges and even do mock interviews just to get ready. I actively used networking platforms to reach out to recruiters and other Engineers that worked in these companies just to learn more about them. Looking back, I was so motivated and inspired just by listening to people’s stories and how they had made it to Google or Facebook. …

How I Prepared for And Secured Three Software Engineering Summer Internship Positions in Big Tech Companies.

Summer 2019, I had just finished my sophomore year of college and declared CS as my major. Being a CS student, I had seen upper class students secure internships with big tech companies in Silicon Valley, and honestly the thought of having to prepare for a technical interview let alone secure a summer internship really scared me. At the time I had only taken basic CS and Math classes. I barely had any CS project on my portfolio and was not at all confident in my coding skills.

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Photo by Kaleidico on Unsplash

Having no solid experiences that I could add to my resume, I had chosen to dedicate that summer in preparing as well as honing my skills in readiness for the next recruiting season. Every day, I made it a goal to do at least two leetcode problems. I had also started working on CS projects for my portfolio. Trust me, it was not easy and there are times I felt so overwhelmed especially when I could not work my way in solving a leetcode problem. However, being part of a community online (Rewriting the Code) gave me the dedication and discipline to continue. A dedication that saw me become better in my problem-solving skills as well as completing my portfolio projects! …

This is another hard level leetcode problem commonly asked during coding interviews. To be able to solve this problem you first need to know how to solve the Merge Two sorted lists problem.Therefore make sure you check my approach of solving the merge two sorted lists problem first before going into this problem.

The Question:

Merge k sorted linked lists and return it as one sorted list. Analyze and describe its complexity.

Example:Input:[1->4->5,1->3->4,2->6]Output: 1->1->2->3->4->4->5->6

The brute force solution that someone would definitely first think about when it comes to solving this problem is to traverse all the linked lists and then collect all the values into an array. Afterwards you sort and iterate over this array to create a proper value of the nodes and then create a new sorted linked list with the new Nodes. …

This is another leetcode easy level problem and it is fundamental to as well learn how to quickly solve this when asked in an interview setting.

The Question:

Merge two sorted linked lists and return it as a new list. The new list should be made by splicing together the nodes of the first two lists.Example:Input: 1->2->4, 1->3->4Output: 1->1->2->3->4->4

Problem solution approach

We should create a new linked list and initialize a zero pointer that points to the first node. We then iterate using the pointer continuously adding nodes in the linked list while traversing both lists.

Here is the…


Celine Surai

Software engineer. I write about my journey, Machine Learning, Web application development and also Python!

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