Filling the Pipeline: Computer & Data Science Students Join Tech Company
Candoris, a national software development company headquartered right in Annville, is serving as a stepping stone for many LVC graduates and mentoring current students through internships.
Kurt Mace ’20, a computer & data science major, began a paid internship with the company in late May and stayed on part-time through the fall, working on a project involving the creation of a software application to manage customers and data better. His tasks involved developing the application from start to finish, including designing the user interface, organizing the database, and writing the code that brings in the customers’ information.
This project provided him a sense of reality for the working world compared to a classroom setting.
“While working on my project, I learned how to manage time in a different way than I normally did. I was responsible for creating deadlines for tasks and estimating how long those tasks would take,” he said. “The professor always assigned due dates in my classes, so this workflow was new to me. It took some getting used to at first.”
Mace also credits the way LVC professors teach in the Mathematical Sciences Department.
“The main philosophy focuses on learning skills rather than specific details,” he said. “Instead of teaching students a particular programming language, students are taught how to pick up new languages and interpret them. This adaptability was invaluable to me because 90% of what I used to create my app was completely new to me. LVC taught me how to be versatile, which prepared me for the whole new world that I was thrown into during the internship.”
While Mace is using his development project as a learning experience, two Dutchmen alumni are launching their careers at Candoris.
Elijah Navarro ’19 and Kyle Mace ’17, Kurt’s brother, serve as software developers on Candoris’ Salesforce development team. The Valley alumni work with the company’s customer relationship management (CRM) enterprise software with a suite of solutions for marketing, analytics, and customer service.
Many of Candoris’ clients are non-profit organizations, so Mace and Navarro need to create effective organizational plans.
“When our business analysts and project managers determine what a customer needs and wants, they give me various tasks describing the desired functionality, and I build this functionality into the customer’s salesforce organization to benefit the customer as much as possible,” Kyle said. “It’s a great feeling when you can contribute to something bigger than just your work, and your piece helps make it a better whole.”
Candoris provided the two men hands-on experience in helping customers, but LVC taught them to perform effectively and quickly.
“LVC gave me the skills to read and understand new material at a fast pace. My goal is to keep learning, so I can deliver clients the best product possible,” said Navarro. “Candoris strives to satisfy all their existing clients while continuing to accept new clients. I believe that working hard can lead me to deliver on this goal and provide quality content.”
Editor's Note: Along with the Mace brothers and Navarro, shown in the photo are graduates of LVC's Design, Media, and Technology Department, and our MBA Program who are also employed at Candoris.
-- Huntre Keip, Marketing & Communications Intern