In Case You Missed It: Google employees visit Foothill College

Aditi Pandey, Staff Writer

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  • Four Google employees spoke to Foothill students about pathways to working at Google, company culture, and the technology industry as a whole on Wednesday, January 17th.

  • Mikel McDaniel, Foothill computer science professor and Google employee, describes his work as a Site Reliability Engineer. Site Reliability Engineers plan for the future, and ensure that sites are fast, scalable, reliable, resilient, and available. “[It’s about] taking problems...and coming up w software engineering approach to those problems. You want to remove the human as much as possible.”

  • Mikel McDaniel (left) on diversity and company culture: “When you’re in class you have group projects and personal projects. You’re learning about new stuff all the time, you’re trying to do stuff all the time. There’s very different goals between college project and a product that’s trying to get something done." Mark Lentczner described, “[There’s] far more diversity of people applying to Google. Ten years ago I was turned down because I didn’t have a PhD.”

  • On joining Google, Michael Dewitt (left) noted, “Writing a lot of software certainly helps. That’s really the key thing to focus on, your software experience. Google has awfully stressful interview process. They really want to test you, see how you work under pressure…[they] really push your boundaries.” “The tldr is grab a ‘cracking the interview’ books. What we want to find out is do you get stuff done given a problem, and do you think. We get to see you fail, and how you recover from failing. We can’t fix ‘are you smart’ but we can fix ‘can you learn a bunch of computer crud that you can learn in either case,'” said Mike Gainer (right).