When Dinesh Matai decided to join WIMTACH last February, he didn’t realize that he would gain a lot of hands-on experience.
“I’ve seen the whole life cycle of a project,” he said. “I’ve been through various phases which helps me to understand the big picture. So, it’s pretty cool.”
Last year while studying as a full-time student in the Software Engineering Technology program at Centennial College, Dinesh held a part-time position at WIMTACH as a student researcher. He found the job so enjoyable, he decided to reapply for another student researcher position this September.
Over the course of his time at WIMTACH, Dinesh has worn many hats including one as a Cyber Security Researcher and in a leadership position among the WIMTACH student research team for an EMR application which lasted for 10 months. Now, he acts as the Quality Assurance and Business Analyst lead for a Xello project collaboration. The connections that he’s made with his team are part of the highlight of his experience at WIMTACH.
“Working in a team and leading a team, those are two skills that I really appreciate to have gained from WIMTACH,” he said.
Apart from the hard skills that he’s improved, he believes that connecting with his peers and learning from them is the greatest asset he’s gained from WIMTACH.
“The tools that we use … all these will be definitely useful in the long term. Other than that, the contacts from WIMTACH, like people who I have worked with, they were a great influence and I learned a lot from them,” he said.
More, he’s found that the WIMTACH work environment has given him an advantage in a competitive job market.
“Whatever you read is not [exactly] what is required in the industry. There are some gaps between what we do here in college and what is required in the industry,” he said. “These roles actually help us to bridge that gap and actually say to the employer that ‘hey I already worked in a team … [managed] a team and I can be an asset in your organization.’”
With this understanding in mind, during a break from his contract at WIMTACH, last year, Dinesh took the initiative to apply for an internship at RBC. The internship served as a lead in to a job offer as a Cloud Security Solutions Architect which he will start in early January.
He explained that his job at WIMTACH made him eligible for the internship at RBC and laid the ground work for him to acquire the skills needed for the Cloud Security Solutions Architect position.
“Last summer I was a co-op [student] at RBC with the same team and they actually offered a full-time employment based on the performance [from the] summer term,” he said. “To be honest, the initial terms at WIMTACH where I was in Cyber Security really helped me in gaining that co-op position in the first place.”
Since the work environment at WIMTACH is similar to that at RBC, for his upcoming role, Dinesh feels prepared and confident about his ability to succeed. In particular, he found that his position at WIMTACH challenged and improved his ability to effectively manage his time as he performed school work along with the work from his student researcher position.
“Definitely, that is a big bonus,” he said. “Because the responsibilities in the [RBC] team are huge, because you are in a team where you decide what the security architecture of the cloud is going to be, the responsibilities and the liability are more and you have to manage everything properly. So, here as you manage work and school, if you are able to manage that, then that prepares you for the future.”
For new students who are hoping to find success at WIMTACH, his biggest tip is to prioritize collaborative learning.
“You need to reach out to people and say I’m in the same position as you or I want to reach to the position you are in and learn from their experiences,” he said. “Try to connect with people, try to connect with them not on the surface but try to understand their whole journey.”
In the future, Dinesh is hoping to extend the same learning opportunities he got to others.
“I definitely see myself in a managerial position, helping students and new comers like me because someone helped me and I would like to pass on the same help that I received,” he said. For now, he is still working at WIMTACH and completing his final credits for his program and looking forward to joining RBC. “I’m excited,” he said.
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