June 16, 2013

The Amazing Life Of A Google Intern

“Google is the Mecca of tech world.” Don’t think it’s a bit overrated; check the surveys on companies with most optimistic employees, companies with best employee perks or companies with best business outlook, Google will be on top. The search giant holds a working culture which no other tech firm was able to replicate.

Apparently, even Hollywood is taking its bite from Google with the upcoming movie The Internship, which portrays two young men, Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn in leading roles, doing internship at the company in an effort to catch up with the digital age.

So how does it feel to be an intern at this coveted company? Well let’s look into the life of Rohan Shah, who just finished a semester of internship at Google.

Getting Selected:

Out of the 40,000 applications, Google accepts only 1500 interns every year in U.S. Rohan Shah was a student of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign when he filled out an online form for Google internship.

It took weeks for Google to get back to him and even another 1 month for the interview and proceedings, before he got selected.


According to Rohan, Google interviews were not as tough as he had imagined. After the email correspondence with Google HR, two telephonic interviews were performed, where the Google employees interviewed him.

"It was essentially applying your knowledge in a very practical situation. It's figuring out if you can scale a system, or you can make something much more efficient,” said Rohan about the technical questions he faced in interview.

Shah got a call from Google, one week after telephonic interviews. It was followed by more interviews "I had interviews with around five different teams," told Rohan. They were meant to figure out which department he would like to intern for. Finally he joined as an intern for Google’s Android department.

Free! Free! Free!

A Google intern doesn’t have to worry about his stay, food or commute. Shah was put in the Google- paid corporate housing in San Jose, with fellow interns. Google has its own free shuttles throughout the Bay Area, including San Francisco, San Jose, Palo Alto and Berkeley to pick up and drop employees who are going and returning from work.

Even if you need a bike, they are available in Google office for long term rent. Altogether “it was a great housing experience to me,” says Shah.

According to Shah, food might be the biggest perk at Google. The campus approximately has 24 cafes with cuisines ranging from Mexican to Indian and burger joints to pizza corners.

Make Money:

We know Google is one of the most paying companies in the world. The interns too enjoy a share of it. An intern at Google makes an average of $5678 per month. Shah’s pay was even higher $6100 per month. Consider the free accommodation, food, transport, gym membership and a lot more adding to this money, a Google intern is really “living large.” According to Shah, “I didn't find myself wasting any money, except on weekends when I went exploring. It was a great semester."


The interns go through one and a half weeks of orientation period when they were taught how the company works, including its goals. They are also introduced to other new Googlers in campus

What do the interns do in Google?

We know what internship usually is; a bunch of kids helping the employees in whatever they do. But at Google, these interns are working on real products. Each intern has an instructor and will be assigned one project with team mates. Shah remembers the internal rolling out of first Android feature he developed. “It was a great sense of satisfaction,” said Shah, as the product is going to be used by millions.

The interns also enjoy several Google-organized trips to museums, movies, hiking and biking excursions, as well as several trips to San Francisco. There were also a lot of team dinners.

After Google Internship?

According to Baltescu, a former intern at Google, the internship help develop coding skills which otherwise are difficult to learn. Soon after his internship at Google, Shah had given an interview at the company for a full time job, with the help of his mentor. He was offered a job after the interviews and will join the search giant after his graduation. Here is his advice for the Google dreamers: “Google is really looking for experience. They want to find engineers who are motivated, so activities outside of school really help. At the same time, you need to know your basics. You need to understand simple algorithms and how to apply them. Google is all about application."

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