My Summer Fling with IBM Watson
In my mind, IBM Watson represented a sentient super computer.
That’s what I thought when I was selected for one of 17 internships among almost 1,400 applicants to work with the IBM Watson team this summer.
I soon realized, however, that IBM Watson represents next-generation analytics technology – or cognitive systems – that holds the promise of transforming the way organizations think, act and operate. It’s remarkable really.
As a Digital Media Management major at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas graduating in December 2012, this has been a very memorable experience for me. IBM’s internship program is really miles ahead of what some of my friends are doing, especially considering how pivotal a role all the interns play in contributing directly to bringing IBM Watson solutions to market, which is something I am very proud.
What stands out the most with IBM’s internship program is that I’m able to work directly with clients and side-by-side with some of the brightest minds in business and research on real-world projects.
For instance, I was sitting in a meeting with WellPoint, one of our healthcare clients, and it was such a great learning experience to observe how our solutions are being applied to enhance and change the way they do business. That’s something that you can’t get from sitting in a classroom.
I also felt that the freedom, latitude, support and trust that IBM gives its interns is immeasurable and reflects what we will likely see upon entering the working world. This has really allowed us to bring our own knowledge and passion towards achieving an end outcome.
That outcome for me was developing a framework and marketing strategy for an intercollegiate competition for business and technical students around IBM Watson in various industries.
I feel that it is these experiences that will make a big difference in today’s very competitive job market. I know there is a growing need among organizations to find students that have first-hand knowledge in the ways smarter analytics can be applied and used to improve business problems.
I look forward to one day working with IBM Watson again.
For another perspective, read a blog from one of my fellow interns Malcolm Greaves.