Name: Ben Rocklin
Major: Computer Science
School: Stanford University, 2020
Why did you want to intern for Nextworld?
I’ve been passionate about programming for a long time; however, I had little experience applying my skills to real world scenarios, as most of my learning has been in the classroom rather than out in the field. This led me to searching for a summer internship where I could code. What really sets Nextworld apart was the great unity that the team shares and the great passion that each team member brings daily. As I read the different sections on the Nextworld’s website, detailing the company’s mission and team members’ reviews, I immediately knew that I had stumbled across an amazing opportunity, full of unparalleled enthusiasm and an unrivaled company culture. I had never before seen a team working with such harmony and with such investment in what they were building. This really set it apart from anything I had ever come across before and Nextworld immediately had me hooked.
What was the most interesting/exciting thing that you've been able to do as an intern? Your “Magic Moment”?
This summer, as part of the frontend team, I had the amazing opportunity to put a theming system in place for our software. Having had no prior experience with web development or computer design, I was very daunted at the prospect of having to implement a full system to change the colors and logos of the software, and I was initially quite surprised that I was chosen to do so. Nevertheless, I was given many opportunities to learn what I did not know, and my fellow teammates always showed grace and never hesitated to offer help to me whenever I needed it. Through hard work and great teamwork, I was finally able to achieve my initial goal of a 100% themed website. My “magic moment” would probably be when I walked by several of my coworkers’ workstations and noticed that many of them were taking advantage of the theming functionality, some going so far as to design custom themes of their own.
In what way has Nextworld impacted you, and how have you left an impact at Nextworld?
As a programmer, Nextworld impacted me immensely by giving me the ability to improve my coding skills, teaching me much more about the general workflow of software development, and improving my problem-solving and bug-fixing mindsets. However, what really set Nextworld apart as an internship experience was how it impacted me on a personal level. Nextworld truly taught me the values of working in a team and the mindset I need to have in order to be a good team player, revolutionizing the way I see teamwork and its capabilities. It showed me that to get something done right, doing it yourself never stacks up to having a committed and united team, a lesson which I will certainly take with me as I move forward. In this way, I believe that Nextworld has made a lasting impact on me that I could not have gotten anywhere else.
Conversely, I feel that as an intern and a team member at Nextworld, I have left an impact there as well. On a concrete scale, the features, such as themes, that I have helped developed continue to be used to this day, and I am very grateful to have made an impact on our product as an intern. On a personal level, I’ve made many great friendships with the team at Nextworld, and I hope to maintain these as I return to Stanford.
What types of lessons/skills have you learned that you will take back to school?
The value of teamwork is certainly the biggest lesson that I learned at Nextworld. In education in general, I find that many students, myself formerly included, view success as a competition with the person sitting at the next desk. However, Nextworld taught me that true success is not about knowing more and doing better than those around you, but rather working together with those around you to achieve the greatest results possible. This lesson about teamwork has also yielded various practical skills that I can certainly utilize in the future, such as not being afraid to ask others for help, and how to form and be a part of a confident, effective team.
Discuss the people at Nextworld.
The core of Nextworld truly is the people involved and the culture that they build. I can claim with certainty that every team member that I have met is very passionate about both what they do and about the team as a whole. The main founders maintain a personal and strong connection with each team member, and I never was made to feel like another “cog in the machine.” Every member focuses on bringing the best they can every day, and the culture is incredibly constructive; I am proud to say that I did not hear anything resembling a negative comment uttered even once. I am lost for words at how amazing the people at Nextworld are, and I truly believe that the team that they have built and the positivity that they bring is unsurpassed.