Mar 8, 2022

Summer Spotlight: Vista's Internship Programme

For several years now, Vista Group has run a summer internship programme, bringing students into the workforce for an experience in the incredible cinema technology sector. The summer of 2021/2022 may have been a hectic time across New Zealand, moving in and out of the office, but that didn't keep our interns from having an amazing experience.

From software engineering to finance and marketing, we had an amazing range of intern roles and projects; let's explore what they've been hard at work on!

Project Aero (Software Engineer and Design Interns)

Pictured (Left to right, top to bottom): Baxter Hill, Anna Davies, Ted Lo, Jessica Villegas, Joel Hutchinson, Sajith Dhambagolla

Our Software Engineer and Design Interns worked closely together on Project Aero, but before we get to that, let's get to know our team.

To give us a taste of who you are, what movie would you say best represents you?

Joel Hutchinson: I’m going to have to go with Shrek 2 because while I’m not the first to do something, I just do it better than the original. Also, it’s vibes are on point.

Baxter Hills: Zootopia. I connect with the fox, Nick Wilde, because he’s mischievous and tries to maximise the efficiency and efficacy of systems, evident by the way he runs his popsicle business.

Anna Davies: I don't know whether it best represents me, but the movie that comes to mind is one I watched every other day when I was younger and still could never get sick of, Mamma Mia. It's a classic feel-good movie!

What were the highlights of your internship experience?

Baxter: With Thursday nights at Vista and the half-day Fridays, it shows how incredible the work-life balance is at Vista. Additionally, mentorship has been an extremely invaluable experience for my personal and professional development.

Ted Lo: When they say there's a casual dress code - they mean it. It reflects the company culture and everyone looks like they're ready to go to the beach!

My favourite thing about working at Vista has been everything—whether it’s the flexible hours, heading over to Cafe Mocha for lunch, or waiting for node modules to install—it has all been a blast!
— Joel Hutchinson

Sajith Dhambagolla: From meeting lots of new people, to annoying my buddy with endless questions to primo half-day Fridays; it has been an enjoyable experience interning at Vista and I have learnt a lot!

Jessica Villegas: As my first ever internship, the supportive culture of Vista has enabled my growth - and my appreciation for software - in more ways than I could ever imagine. Also, the opportunity to work across the business with the design intern is a challenging but rewarding experience!

You worked closely together on Project Aero; can you walk us through exactly what Aero is?

Joel and Baxter: In the engineering intern team, we collaborated with Anna, the design intern; and have been working on Aero—a website named after the term 'Aeromancy', meaning to divine insights from interpretations of the clouds. It's mostly geared towards new hires, and the purpose of this project has been to create an internal web dashboard to display insights into cloud data from around the globe; leveraging the existing Vista Horizon database API to provide a high-level overview of the exhibition industry.

How did Project Aero play out from a design perspective? What other briefs did you work on?

Anna: In my first weeks, I began the internship with a brief for the brand, Flicks. This was a great introduction to professional UX/UI design, allowing me to gain insight into the expectations and workflow of the summer. For the remainder of my internship, I have been collaborating with the engineering intern team to work on the Aero project. It is the first real experience where my digital design develops from a concept to a live site – which is really exciting!

A resounding common thread between all our experiences working at Vista was the impact made by people around us. Mentorship, the freedom of experimentation, open feedback and communication stood out for many of us. Collaboration played a large role for those of us in teams together, such as our Software Services interns Shalin, Ben and Matt.

Shared Services Interns (Software Services, Marketing, Finance)

Pictured (left to right): Shalin Naidoo (Software Services), Ben Estrich (Software Services), Matthew Young (Software Services), Sophie Chen (Marketing), Jessica Huo (Finance)
Shalin, Ben, and Matthew — the three of you have been working very closely in Software Services; if you had to pick a movie to represent you together, what would it be?

If we had to pick 1 movie to represent us, it would have to be The Pursuit Of Happyness, because we never give up!

What have you been working on during your internships?

You may have heard of myStats, built by a previous group of interns... now, we present myOtherStats. This project aimed to tackle the problems around proactively logged alerts related to Vista Cloud. If you've ever worked in services, you’ve probably noticed all manner of duplicate incidents with weird titles that look like they were made by a robot. Well they are, and as clever as that robot is, robots often forgets that they have already logged an incident. The three of us have been sweating over this project to address that shortcoming: by filtering, grouping duplicates, and providing a helpful stats dashboard for reporting.

What would you like others to know about your experience?

Ben Estrich: Working at Vista has been an amazing experience with extraordinary people in a super fun environment.

Matthew Young: Simple: Good free coffee, great work life balance, and even better people to work with!

Shalin Naidoo: Besides the work (and the coffee machine), it comes down to the people—everyone would make time to answer our questions and you can talk to anyone across different departments too!

Jessica Huo — Finance Intern

What movie would you say best represents you?

Hmmm. I found this a bit of a difficult one to answer, so I've let an online quiz answer for me. According to the quiz, I'm best represented by Frozen.

What kind of work have you been involved in at Vista?

During my time at Vista, I assisted different members of the finance team in completing various tasks. The main task that I undertake at least once a week is completing the cash report capturing the cash movements – which is sent out as a summary to the CEO, CFO, and other finance team members. The wide range of tasks allows me to constantly experience and learn new things!

I agree with the others, my favourite part of Vista is the excellent company culture and people. The tremendous support and encouragement provided has made my first intern experience unforgettable!

Also, the half-day Fridays really encourage a healthy work-life balance.

Sophie Chen — Marketing Intern

What movie best represents you?

I would say I resonate with the Devil wears Prada because it is a reminder that I’m still young and as much as hustling is important, it should never take over your entire life – so I plan to work hard and equally play hard!

What sort of projects have you been working on as a marketing intern?

This summer at Vista, I have been exposed to different facets of marketing with a predominant focus on the brand Veezi. With a wide range of projects, I have been involved in: making an internal press release, preparing Christmas cards for customers, developing positioning and messaging for Veezi's subscriptions module, conducting a competitor analysis, leading the Go-To Market Strategy for the launch in Mexico, working on content strategy, social media posts, and blogs—like this one!

How was your overall experience at Vista?

Aside from the people and the amazing work culture, I feel that this internship at Vista has been incredibly valuable. I love the autonomy I am given to lead projects I am working on; while also having plenty of support and guidance. This provides me with a challenging but rewarding learning experience.

A huge shoutout to the different departments: marketing, software engineer, software services, finance; for taking us under your wing! Finally, thank you P&C for all your support throughout these last few months.

— Written by Sophie Chen.

If you’re inspired and interested in work at Vista, keep an eye on our Careers page for opportunities.

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