Christina Wangen

Who are you?

Christina Wangen, Junior, Industrial & Systems Engineering 

Who is your employer?

IBM, Singapore

How did you learn about your internship?

I had heard about it from a family friend that goes to another university. 

What was the application process like?

I reached out to HR, and they gave me an online application, placed me in a department and then had a phone interview with that specific department. 

What were your major tasks or projects at this internship?

I was in charge of automating our optimization process of determining which supplier to chose based on rebate values and supplier quality. This was primarily done through coding in R Statistical Software and SPSS modeler. Another major task was preparing a presentation/demonstration about my team's black belt project in which we monitored supplier quality throughout the entire supply chain process to the General Manager of IBM Systems who visited our site briefly during the summer. I then converted the presentation into a client visitation video.

Do you have any recommendations for Georgia Tech students looking to intern in the same company or country?

The Singaporean culture is a more westernized culture. They are hard working, but at the same time manage work-life balance. Something that stood out to me was that working through lunch is very rare. Unlike the U.S. where it is very common, working through lunch is almost looked down on. Also, everyone speaks English, however they have "Singlish" so sometimes it would be difficult to understand what people were referring to, but overall wasn't too difficult.

Where did you live? Did you find accomodations independently or with your company's help?

I previously lived there and reached out to one of my friends and lived with her family. 

How has this internship influenced your career path?

I had great exposure to women in leadership through local employees such as the general manager of the site, as well as executives from IBM Systems and Watson that came to visit. From this experience I know that I wish to live abroad at some point again, and from shadowing different areas of IBM I am pursuing an opportunities within Watson. 

If paid, did the company you worked for pay you enough to live off of your salary or stipend, or did you have to supplement your income with personal funds?

IBM pays the Singaporean minimum wage for interns so unfortunately it is was not sufficient for me to live on. They do not cover housing, transportation, nor relocation.