Internship at Appian
Up one level
Emily Hall

Major: English
Minor: Technical Writing, IST
Hometown: New Bloomfield, PA

How did you learn about this opportunity?

My aunt used to work there and when she found out that I was looking for a technical writing internship, she referred me to Appian.

Tell us a little bit about your experience.

Appian is a software company that specializes in software that allows companies to design their own software. In other words, their software creates software. I worked as an Information Developer intern in Appian's engineering department. I worked one-on-one with software engineers, as well as the head Information Developer (Info Dev, for short). I had several projects over the span of my 10 week internship, spanning from documentation bug fixes (all their documentation is housed online) to a complete revamp of their documentation site. I worked with the head Info Dev to create the Quarterly Documentation Deliverables (QDD) that the company puts out each quarter with the release of new updates and bug-fixes. The QDDs encompass any new documentation or changes to existing documentation that occur at this time. I learned a lot about the technical writing field, as well the software one. The job is challenging - all your errors will be pointed out and when you're not on your A-game, it's noted. But overall, I really benefited from this experience and I've come out of this internship a much wiser and stronger person.

Having set foot in the professional world, I'm anxious to get back to it. In my internship, what I did mattered.

How did this experience impact you academically?

If anything, it's given me a new way to look at how I write. I've learned to write for clarity, not length. I'm excited to apply this in my upcoming classes. However, having set foot in the professional world, I'm anxious to get back to it. In my internship, what I did mattered. My documents helped the company and its users, my documentation site changes helped the users navigate the site with more ease. I learned a lot and the work I - and the Info Dev team - did was valued. At school, the work is mostly for personal gain - to pass a class, to get a degree. So, while I'm excited to apply what I learned in my classes, I also will miss doing work that benefits others.

What are your career goals and plans?  How did this experience impact them?

My career goal is to become a technical writer in the software field. This summer, I got a taste of that. I worked as an Info Dev (another name for a Technical Writer) at an up-and-coming software company. I learned from people who had recently interned, but were now working full-time and people who had been out of school for years. The experience was an eye-opening one, and has made me more excited than ever to return to the field after I graduate.

Would you recommend this experience to other Liberal Arts students?

Yes, absolutely. Working in a business environment is tough at times, but so rewarding. The experience is something you shouldn't pass up if you have the opportunity.

For more information on internships for Liberal Arts students, visit our website.

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