The Hitachi Automotive Systems Winter Internship is a 2-4 week program that offers UIC students interested in IT an opportunity to experience the Japanese corporate world.
Please introduce yourself.
My name is Hee Young Jeong. I am a junior double majoring in economics and applied statistics. I had an opportunity earlier in the summer to intern at Hitachi Automotive Systems.
Could you give us a brief overview of the internship program?
The program is a 2-4 week internship program in Tokyo. It is unique because the firm pays for your plane ticket and even for your hotel fees. In the summer, I worked from 9am until 5:30pm and had an hour of lunch time
which I could use at my discretion. How did you get to know about the opportunity?
I found out through the UIC website’s notice board.
What were your motivations for applying for the Hitachi internship?
I have been interested in working with data for a while. There are many branches of utilizing data such as data engineering, data science, data visualization, amongst many others. But I was especially interested in data science; which includes coding, machine and deep learning models. The internship at Hitachi offered me an opportunity to utilise what I had learned only theoretically in real life situations.
How did you prepare for the interview?
In all honesty, the interview was not as important as the process leading up to the interview. I felt my resume was a much more important factor in my acceptance. The interview was a 15 minute Skype call and the questions were a mix of general fit-related questions and clarification questions regarding the things I had included in my resume.
What tasks were you given while working at Hitachi?
My time at the office mainly consisted of training on the use of the tableau program, data visualization to better communicate relationships and meaning of collected data to employees of the firm. Aside from the tasks given to me however, I also went around asking to be given extra tasks so I could further practice the skills I learned during my training.
What prior experiences helped you while working at the firm?
My past experience in using Microsoft Excel helped me a lot when handling administrative tasks, and of course my experience with programming allowed me to maximise my utility.
What were you able to gain from the experience?
Aside from getting hands-on experience in programming on the field, I was able to gain an insight into the corporate culture of Japan, and because I had a lot of free time after work, I had a lot of sightseeing opportunities as well.
What were some of the things you found to be challenging?
Language was something I found quite challenging during my short time in Japan. While all my colleagues were relatively proficient in English, I think I would have been better off had I had higher proficiency in Japanese.
Do you have any sightseeing suggestions for the next crop of interns?
I highly recommend people go visit Akihabara, Shinjuku Historical Museum, Odaiba (where the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be held), Tokyo Imperial Palace, and Tokyo Station.