Life at Empatica: the Graduate Engineering Program

The Engineering Graduate program at Empatica is an on-the-job formative experience for up and coming, recently graduated engineers, who cannot wait to put their newly acquired skills to practical use. It was launched in 2021, and after an intensive and thorough selection process, 3 graduate engineers joined the Empatica Team for hands-on experiences.

We spoke with Giulia, Andrés, and Vania about what the past year has been like for them as the pioneer set of the program, and they gave us some insights.

We hope you are inspired by their experiences; if so, do not hesitate to apply!

How the program is structured

The Engineering team at Empatica comprises many other sub-teams, which are involved in different projects, and so far, each graduate engineer has had the opportunity to work within different teams that focus on what they majored in while in school. Each rotation lasts about 3 months, in which they learn the tools and apply the technical skills relevant to each team’s area of specialization.

According to Giulia, “ever since I joined, in September, I’ve had the opportunity to work with Data Scientists, Cloud Engineers, and Embedded engineers on various tasks, thus learning a lot from this experience.

Offering more insight on this, Vania states:

During the first rotation in the Data team, the 3 of us worked together with other members of the team, and our major task was data collection. We were a small group working on a dedicated project. It was a very nice way to start the program; each of us was assigned tasks and introduced to the core of the company.

The next rotations have been slightly different from the first because then, the graduate engineers were split into various teams. In Vania’s words, “at the beginning of our rotation in each team, we are exposed to the tools they use (e.g. programming languages) for a short time, and then we are inserted into the action. We start working on small tasks with the help of the members of the team we are assigned to, and begin to understand how they contribute to major projects within the company.“

All three of them agree that the rotations are interesting because they are able to observe how the different team members collaborate to build a bigger project. They experience first-hand what it means to work with engineers in general, and also as members of sub-groups handling different projects, helping them to understand how the efforts of all the teams contribute to a greater objective. For example, a feature being developed by a specific team could affect the work of other engineers, thereby impacting the whole development process; this contributes to a holistic educational experience.

What happens in each rotation

For the graduate engineers, a typical day is not so ‘typical’, because their activities vary from week to week, depending on their rotation.

Each rotation begins with onboarding to get the basic knowledge and skills required to start working on the team.

Afterward, they’ll implement a new feature or continue with one that has not been completed yet. In these cases, they learn and apply many methods regarding code implementation, code review, unit testing, and more.

Finally, they complete the rotation by doing an offboarding, finishing their tasks, and leaving clear documentation on what was done and what needs to be continued.

A challenging, yet rewarding year

For Vania, the year has been very enjoyable because she got to work on several projects, giving her a hands-on experience from different angles, and making it one of the most rewarding experiences of her learning journey. In her words, “every person here is very passionate about their work and is willing to share their knowledge by answering questions. The environment is very comfortable and conducive to learning and growth.

Similarly, for Andrés, the opportunity to learn many technical skills in different software areas has helped him have a deeper look at how all teams involved in the development of a product work together. This has made the year worthwhile for him.

Giulia defines the experience as one of the most challenging and formative experiences she has ever had. She says “I really appreciate the constant reminder that I give a significant and tangible contribution to the company, thanks to the positive attitude and continuous support of the people around me. Every day from the beginning, I’ve been encouraged to work and explore new things on my own, while still always having highly prepared and supportive teammates to help me, making sure we all get the most from this experience.

Join this year’s program

Have you been inspired by the experiences of our graduate engineers and want to be a part of the next session? Applications for the 2022/2023 program are now on, and we would love to see your application! Click here to apply.

Not interested in the graduate program but would still like to join our team? You can check out our other vacancies and apply through our careers page. In the meantime, enjoy this article highlighting 6 things we love about working at Empatica.

If you’re still not sure if the Graduate Engineering Program is right for you, we’ll leave you with the words of Vania and hope that they help you decide:

“I definitely recommend it to everyone that wants to work in a company but still doesn’t know what an engineer does or what kind of engineer they want to become; to everyone who is very curious and ready to learn, and to those who like changes and want to be dynamic. I think it is the ideal path for those who want to explore different fields in engineering before settling in a specific area.”