Katie, Mobile Marketing Intern, Los Angeles CA
Now that the not-so So Cal weather is coming to an end, so is my internship with CBS Interactive. This summer I have been working in TV City and also get to work one day a week at the other office in El Segundo. Both locations are so different but equally great and I really enjoy having the opportunity to experience both. I’m the intern for the Mobile Marketing department and have definitely learned so much as well as met some amazing people. As my fellow intern, Matt, has mentioned, seeing celebrities while you’re at work is pretty awesome. Although it is tough having to remember constantly that you’re “working” so you can’t just run up to Craig Ferguson and say “I love you and think you are hilarious!” And the Price Is Right folks crack me up so that’s always a great way to start my day by seeing everyone lined up bright and early and so excited for the show!
Celebrities aside, the people who work here are all so nice and fun. Working with mobile is such a great opportunity to see the innovation take place and grow within this relatively new industry. I knew nothing about mobile when I first started except for what I know from playing around on my Blackberry. Throughout my time here, I have been able to see the entire process of creating mobile applications from the brainstorming, development, revision, and launch. I even got to help out with some voiceovers in the studio!
Day-to-day, I work mostly with the advertising part of the mobile department and help with updates and screenshots of the campaigns on all the different CBS property applications and WAP sites. With the fall shows coming up, there is a lot to be updated and revamped so I have been helping getting ready for that as well. I have also been working on a couple ongoing projects putting together spreadsheets and decks of competitor and research analyses. That has been an amazing learning experience and having a physical entity to take with me at the end of my internship is a great feeling of accomplishment.
All in all, my time here at CBS has been an unforgettable experience and my acquired knowledge supersedes any expectations I had!
Cindy Cheng, Software Engineering Intern, San Francisco CA
I’ve always been the techie in my family. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been the one playing games on the computer and surfing the web. For years I have been on CNET checking out reviews on new products, and download.com has been my go-to site when I’m in need of a new app for my computer. Recently, I’ve been using Chow a lot as well, reading up on recipes and new restaurants to try.
I could barely contain my excitement when I found out I would be working for that company responsible for websites I have used and loved for years. I had a feeling that working 40 hours a week and taking MUNI every day would be pretty intense, but it has definitely been worth it! These past two months as a software engineer intern has been an experience I will not forget. This internship has not only given me the opportunity to apply many of skills that I have learned in school, but it has also exposed me to many new tools that would never be used in the classroom. In addition, I have gotten a taste of what working full-time feels like. You’re definitely beat at the end of the day, but I have found that you learn to truly appreciate and make the most of the time you have off. It’s been busy, but very fun.
Although this is my first internship, I know just from talking to my friends at other companies that CBS Interactive knows how to treat their interns well. In addition to briefings with execs and a tour of the KPIX studio, CBSi also offers various training classes and events for their interns. You can definitely see that CBSi values their interns, and working here has been a great experience.
Elgin, Market Research Intern, San Francisco, California
I’ve been interning here since May 24th and I’m very sad to leave. I’ve had such a fruitful and rewarding experience here and I don’t want it to end. But as they say all good things must come to an end. Though I have a more qualitative background I found myself truly becoming passionate about market research and data! As a market research intern I learned about various applications like Hitwise, Userzoom, comscore, and literally became best friends with Microsoft PowerPoint and Excel. The application I used the most was Hitwise. Hitwise is a global online competitive intelligence service which collects data directly from ISP networks to aid website managers in analyzing trends in visitor behavior and to measure website market share. So I used Hitwise to gather a multitude of data to show marketers how our users are getting to our sites and to show who are competitors are! Though I was just compiling data and putting it into PowerPoint presentations at first I wasn’t able to fully comprehend what the data was saying, but after extensive experience I am now able to convey a story through data.
I also had the honor to assist in usability testing for TV.com and Chow.com as those two websites are undergoing some changes. And that experience was extremely fun. We hire a recruiting firm to recruit users of the website or active Internet users to come into our usability lab on the 1st floor. The lab is set up where the user sits in the front room with an administrator (either Matthew or Jenna—my bosses) and the rest of the team sits in the back room behind a smoke glass mirror. The computer in the front room has an eye tracker and heat mapping software. The eye tracker lets us know in the back where the user is looking throughout the website and the heat mapping tool lets us know where the user is spending most of their time looking on the page.
The research team was also very nice and I enjoyed getting to know them better over the duration of my internship! In all honesty this is my 4th internship and this is by FAR the best one that I’ve had. I loved to be around such intelligent but down to earth people. I loved the fact that I didn’t have to wear a suit and tie. I loved the fact that my boss actually was invested in my learning experience here and wanted to make sure that my internship went smoothly. I simply loved coming in the office everyday to this positive atmosphere. Though I’m leaving, I will make sure to keep in contact with the many people that I met here it was definitely an experience I will never forget!
Patrick, Marketing Intern, San Francisco, CA
So as the summer is beginning to wind down, I’ve started to try to collect my thoughts on my experiences here at CBSi. Among the highlights of my summer definitely have to be icing my boss on her birthday, getting autographs from the entire Always Sunny in Philadelphia cast at Comic-con, and, of course, seeing naked tourists in the windows of the Mariott that my cubicle faces. Who doesn’t want to see that?
As well as many celebrity encounters, as pictured here of my boss with her future husband, this internship has certainly had many high points. It was a bit of an adjustment going from relatively unstructured college life to working nine to five, even though CBSi is fairly casual. It’s been a change, however, that I have quite enjoyed. Really, the best part about my summer has been working and interacting with my co-workers. CBSi is an incredibly welcoming and friendly place, and I am happy to count everyone who works in and around my area a friend. There is no sense of being a college intern that has to go through some type of hazing ritual of doing everyone’s grunt work.
I really can’t think of a better place to work for a summer during college. This was my first experience living outside of the East Coast, and I will finally admit it – the West Coast is the best coast. Even though the weather has been as dreadful as advertised in San Francisco, I’ve had a blast. It’s exciting to be able to work at such a dynamic company in the heart of such an incredible city.
Luong, Business Intelligence Analyst Intern, San Francisco, CA
Hi! How can I start this… hmm… I’ve never been good at writing but sharing a great experience at CBS Interactive is not a hard job I guess.
So let me introduce a bit about myself. My name is Luong. I am Vietnamese, and just got to California last September. I did my Bachelor degree in the U.K and now doing Master in Statistics in Hayward. What a change!
(York, U.K and San Francisco, CA – my past and present)
As a newbie to the States, I didn’t know much about CBS at first, other than CBS News Channel 5 (sorry). But when I was in the U.K, I used CNET for downloads and reviews, so I was so surprised when knowing I would be working for CBS Interactive and CNET.
Unlike most of you guys, I already worked for an insurance company in the U.K for a year so it’s not my first job. But this is far better than my first job. There was no concept such ‘happy hours’, ‘interns/new graduates lunch’, ‘executive meetings’. I felt like we were pampered (in a good way). Those events were definitely the excellent chances to meet other interns and learn experiences from successful people. The working environment here is very friendly and enjoyable. Wearing jeans to work everyday? You gotta love that!
Ok, so that is a brief impression of working for CBS Interactive. And for those who love data and statistics, you might want to know about what I do here as a Business Intelligence Analyst.
Has anyone wondered why what you’ve learn at school is so different from what you have to deal with at work? Yes, that is my case because the real data is nothing like ‘normal’ or what work in ‘theory’ does not work in real situation. But it definitely makes me understand more and in a deeper level of what I’ve studied.
I tested the performance of online marketing campaign, or compared how the new designs would affect users’ behavior on the site. Do users click more, read more? Also, I did some modeling for the page views data and researches on statistical and practical significance. Now with the growth of social media, there will be many challenging and interesting projects to understand more about the users of our sites. So working in a dynamic and constantly changing environment, I don’t have to worry about being bored of working the same stuff everyday.
In fact, working here makes me think of changing my career path from actuary (as I always thought I wanted to be one) to analyst. An awesome work place can really bring the best out of you.
Thinking of joining CBS Interactive? Then be ready for all the cool and fun things!
Matt, Advertising Operations Intern, Los Angeles, CA
Having worked in Finance for my entire six-year career prior to returning to school to study for my MBA, I knew that my summer internship at CBS Interactive would be a completely new and different experience. This summer, I put Wall Street in the rearview mirror and am working as an Advertising Operations Intern for CBS Interactive’s mobile division. Interning at CBS Mobile has been a positive learning experience in an office setting that is uniquely Hollywood.
CBS Mobile’s offices are located in the CBS Television City Studio in Los Angeles, directly above the studios where many of television’s most famous and longest running programs are filmed, including Young and the Restless and the Price is Right. Each morning I make my way through hoards of potential Price is Right contestants lined-up and dressed to impress Drew Carey in an effort to land a new car or Jet-Skis. While walking the halls of Television City, it is not uncommon to bump into celebrity guests for the Late Show with Craig Ferguson. I previously worked in an office where the biggest celebrity we ever saw was Vikram Pandit, so for me, such novelty encounters are, at the very least, amusing.
Amazing game shows and celebrity encounters set aside, working in Mobile has been a great experience. The group here is knowledgeable, efficient and focused on delivering a complete portfolio of mobile entertainment solutions. From mobile optimized web sites to iPhone and Android applications, CBS Mobile is delivering innovative mobile products for all CBS Interactive properties, including Sports, TV.com, and CNET. It has been great to be work in the mobile space, at the forefront of the newest entertainment battleground.
As an Advertising Operations Intern, I feel that I have been able to immediately add value to the CBS Mobile group. The role has largely been a project-based role and I have enjoyed the work. I have had the opportunity to contribute to a wide array of interesting projects, including re-focusing best practices for new product launches, creating mapping solutions for project timelines, modeling cost projections for a contract renewal, creating a budgeting and tracking system for new advertising campaigns and formulating social media marketing strategies for new product launches.
This fall, I will return to USC Marshall with a new understanding of how
interactive media firms are competing in the mobile space. CBS Mobile has provided me with an invaluable experience and an excellent summer job.
Michael, Video Production Intern, San Francisco, CA
Wearing the exoskeleton at UC Davis
It’s hard to believe that in just over a month, I’ll be starting my senior year of college. Looking back at the past three years, I realize that I’ve learned a lot about certain subjects—as a History major, I’ve taken classes on Ancient Greece, East Asia, Europe and the US. But I’ve had almost no time to learn about science and technology (in fact, I’ve tried to avoid any kind of math too complicated to be done using my fingers). My experience at CBS Interactive has been a great opportunity to learn not just the skills needed for my internship, but also about science, technology, and business in general.
SolarImpulse, an airplane powered by the Sun’s energy
As one of two Production Interns for CBSi’s Business Broadband sites, I’ve had a variety of daily tasks. I’ve transcribed interviews, edited videos and podcasts, and assisted producers and the cameraman out on location. As a reward for this labor, I gotten to see projects I’ve worked on live on sites like SmartPlanet.com, BNET.com, and MoneyWatch.com. It’s also fun to follow the conversations and blog posts on other sites that our videos spark.
Scientists study beer at UC Davis
I think what I’ve enjoyed most about my CBSi experience, however, is the exposure I’ve gotten to topics that I might never have learned about otherwise. For example, I learned all about the science of beer from a UC Davis professor on a SmartPlanet shoot two week ago (did you know beer is the best source of silica in the diet?). I got to try on a new exoskeletal robot designed to help stroke victims recover full motion—it also made me look like Doc Ock from Spiderman 2. And I even edited videos about one of the world’s largest solar powered planes and a boat made of recycled plastic bottles.
Floating on only recycled bottles, the “Plastiki” made the dangerous trek from SF to Sydney
The best thing about interning at CBSi has been the internship program’s focus on learning. I would definitely recommend CBSi’s internship program to anyone interested in New Media who wants to get practical, hands-on experience. And who knows, you might even be surprised what you learn!
Polina, CNET.com Editorial Intern, San Francisco, CA.
My father is the ultimate computer genius. Do not roll your eyes just yet my friends; he is the real deal – thick glasses, a dozen computers, an office filled with random gadgets that no one outside of the high school robotics club has heard of, and meters upon meters of wire that lead to nowhere… or possibly everywhere. So, it is no surprise that he was ecstatic when he heard that his very own daughter would be writing for CNET.com – the most expansive source of tech news on the Web. My father’s excitement, though immense, could not match how epically stoked I was to work for a Web site that I have been reading since my days as a wee lass. Anytime I ever wanted to buy any type of technology, be it software or a new phone, I could not simply launch into an instant gratification shopping spree. My father and I would sit down and research CNET for hours before spending any dough. As for download.com, which generates about 3.5 million downloads per day, anyone who owns a computer has heard of this place. Being able to write about freeware downloads that millions of people will see is a serious privilege for an aspiring journalist like me.
I’m not going to lie —this job is not easy. Unlike my dad, I am not a software wiz. People constantly assume that I must know A LOT about computers, internet codes, and resources to be writing about it. The truth is, it takes me a long time to simply research everything I write about. After previously reporting on everything from fashion to music, I was skeptical about the task of writing on the topic of tech. Though I am passionate about modern technology (being the digital native that I am), I have never had much practice with tech journalism. One cannot imagine the numerous details that go into writing about a download. Just like a piece of software needs every step laid out for it to function, the article outlining it must also follow each step. Not only must I research and test the ins and outs of what I am writing about, but the article must be mentally accessible to the millions of different readers roaming the portal which is CNET downloads. Now I have numerous readers emailing me every day, asking me to help them with their computer problems. Helping them is a much more pleasant task than dealing with downtown Berkeley craziness when I was a teller at Wells Fargo.
Not only has my writing, attention to detail, and tech knowledge improved since I have started working at CBSi, I am extremely lucky to be working with such talented and helpful people. I look forward to BART-ing to work every day, walking through the [chilly] streets of San Francisco, and most importantly being able to work in such a positive and challenging environment of writers.
Though I still won’t be able to beat my father in a software/gadget name-dropping contest, I have learned years worth of knowledge and skills through my summer internship. I am proud to say that I have been published on the front page of CNET.com, arguably the most famous tech news site in the world.
Max Harris, Web Development Intern, San Francisco, CA.
I hold the key to understanding the MooTools framework (written by a former CNET employee).
When we got our first family computer over 15 years ago, my favorite activity at the time was to scour a website called download.com for free programs and games to install onto my new favorite toy. Truthfully, I probably had as much fun searching for and installing those shareware gems on our 16-bit Windows 3.1 PC as I did using them. The internet was still a new thing, and I was fascinated by the feeling of discovery that it provided. As my romance with the web blossomed, I had no idea that I would someday write code for CNET, the parent site of download.com, and the leading hub for all things tech.
This is where the magic happens.
Of course, I could not have done any of this on my own (this is a team effort, after all). In fact, one of the highlights of my experience here has been interacting with lots of brilliant and interesting people. For instance, I could not have asked for a better manager. She has empowered me by giving me the direction that I need to complete each of my tasks, while allowing me to come up solutions on my own. Her confidence in my ability to think critically and learn new concepts has enhanced my professional esteem, and she has been very approachable and anytime I have needed direction. Additionally, I have gotten to learn from some of the top leaders in the web development world, and work alongside the movers and shakers of the industry. Connecting with everyone, from the CEO of the company, to former interns that now work at the company now has been very enriching.
Aside from all of the technical stuff, some of the best times I have had include finding new places to eat lunch with my fellow interns, receiving helpful professional advice from various CBS Interactive executives during executive briefings, and participating in cross-cubicle Nerf dart wars in my department.
Our office’s foam-dart arsenal.
So far, I have grown tremendously in technical prowess, as well as in my professional conduct. From the programs that I downloaded over a decade ago on that old Windows 3.1 machine, to this internship program, CNET and CBS Interactive have given me many rich insights and opportunities towards an expansive and fulfilling career as a web developer.
Drew, Software Engineering Intern, San Francisco, CA.
College is a funny place sometimes. I’ve been studying Software Engineering at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo for four years now, and have been taught a great deal there- design principles, programming practices, general software development processes and any number of other useful skills related to the software industry. Yet even after four years, it amazes me how much there still is to learn, something I’m reminded of every day here at CBSI.
Cal Poly is typically regarded as a very hands-on university; after all, their motto is “Learn by doing,” a mindset that has lead to some very exciting and unique programs there. I’ve had the chance to work on several larger software projects in my studies, including a year-long Capstone project for a real customer company. But for all of the preparation and experience I’ve garnered at Cal Poly, I’ve still had some big surprises from my internship.
One challenge I’ve faced since day one is the incredible variety of outside elements used in the projects I’m been working on. In the first two months of my internship I’ve worked with Apache, Apache Tomcat, Solr, Hibernate, jQuery, CSS, Spring, and many other tools and technologies. Some of these I have dabbled in before, if only a little. Others I’d never even heard of, much less been trained in. But in just a few weeks’ time I’ve seen and learned more about these tools than I could ever hope to in twice as much time at school. The change of pace is nothing if not exciting.
Another surprise came in the form of the project I was assigned to. Nearly every college course I’ve taken thus far has centered on building something new from the ground up. By contrast, my project here at CBSI has me working almost exclusively on combining, repurposing, and maintaining existing software. This wasn’t entirely unexpected, but some of the realities of working on legacy code are very new to me. For one thing, it’s much easier to start using an unfamiliar technology when the code I’m working with uses that technology thoroughly; I have many excellent examples readily available to me. On the other hand, understanding my coworkers’ code and learning to interpret their unique styles is a very new experience, one I’m starting to wish I had been exposed to sooner but am grateful to have dabbled in here. The vast majority of the software life cycle is maintenance of existing projects, and these experiences are wonderful preparation for that sort of work.
The world of software is constantly changing, and as students in software-related fields we’re often reminded that, if we want to stay in the game, we will be learning in some shape or form for the rest of our careers. Now, thanks to this internship, I’ve had a meaningful glimpse of what that really means each day here. Even once we’re done with school, there will be plenty more to learn- and I wouldn’t have it any other way.