A Silicon Valley start-up has picked six young Bermudians to work as summer interns.
Derek Tucker-Peters, Tyler Trott, Zara Francis Roban, Malachi Butterfield, Tyrese Coakley, and Zar’a Cardell are all working remotely for The @ Company, a California company centred around digital privacy.
Barbara Tallent, the chief executive of The @ Company, said: “We want our interns to learn and grow, but we want to learn and grow, too.
“As a company that believes in the power of people, we wanted to bring together a team of people with diverse backgrounds and experiences.”
The @ Company operates on a virtual basis, so they could choose talent from all over the world. The two-month internship launched earlier this month.
A spokesman for the company said after the internship list was published that the company “received an overwhelming amount of applications from many impressive candidates”.
The internship scheme was publicised through Kevin Warner at Planet Math, Coral Wells at ConnecTech, the Technology Leadership Forum, and Fiona Beck at the Bermuda Business Development Agency, and others.
Denise Daniels, who led the firm’s search for interns, said: “I’ve been managing internships for most of my career in start-up companies, and I never have seen such a turnout of high-quality interns. I had to turn the advertisement off on LinkedIn because so many people applied.”
The company at first budgeted for a maximum of four interns, but they were “blown away by the quality of the applicants”.
The company ended up recruiting investors to sponsor interns and they were able to hire 18 young people from Bermuda, Canada, India and the United States.
Since Bermuda is home to a large number of international businesses, many people opt for careers in insurance, accountancy and business administration.
The @ Company has created an internship programme that offers Bermudians a glimpse into a Silicon Valley tech start-up’s inner workings.
Kim Perdikou, The @ Company board chairwoman and a Bermuda resident, said: “This is an opportunity for these interns to get a feel for a Silicon Valley start-up culture and gain experience in working with global teams.
“They will also get experience with The @ Company’s global platform which provides an innovative business model enabling many diverse businesses with additional sources of revenue”.
Bermudian developer intern Tyler Trott said The @ Company had given him an invaluable opportunity to develop his coding skills and crystallise his career goals.
He said: “I took advanced placement computer science in my high school and developing a video game for the AP exam helped push me in the direction of technology.”
He added the Silicon Valley opportunity was “the first step to see if I want to do this in the future, and so far it’s been really fun”.
Derek Tucker-Peters, another intern, said his passion for maths and science led him to getting involved in robotics.
He added: “Since acknowledging my interest in programming I have taken to learning more about it.
“The opportunity to work at The @ Company is amazing for helping me grow as a coder. Currently at The @ Company, I am working with a couple of other interns on a chat app as well as a social media app.”
Zara Francis-Roban, a graphic design student at Ryerson University in Toronto and a fellow intern, said she was interested in building a strong public image for a brand.
She added: “At The @ Company I’m working on producing graphic design work and media content for the company that will help get out the message about the @ protocol and the importance of internet privacy.”
• UPDATE: this article has been updated to include the missing photo of Derek Tucker-Peters. Apologies to him and his family