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Paul, Weiss Hosts CUNY Women in Tech Interns for Winter Break
Five women undergraduates from the City University of New York, all interested in pursuing careers in technology, completed a paid, three-week mini-internship during the college’s January recess at Paul, Weiss’s IS Organization in their New York office.
The “Winterns” were assigned a tech challenge focused on creating a self-service portal using the enterprise workflow solutions technology ServiceNow. The five spoke with developers and interviewed numerous Paul, Weiss lawyers and Operations team members about how help requests are generated and how service is delivered by various groups at the firm. Their research began with learning the ServiceNow technology platform, and moved on to how the product would best benefit Paul, Weiss end users. In a presentation to the firm’s IT Organization, they offered their proposal for how to best utilize the technology at the firm.
The Winterns described feeling very nervous before the presentation, but said that the environment that the tech team had created was extremely supportive. As one Wintern noted, “Everyone we met with helped prepare us for this presentation, including practice rounds before we delivered the final presentation. There were so many smiles and an applause at the end.” Lina Rahoumi expressed the unique opportunity to meet and work with other young women who share her passion, and the respect and encouragement she and the other Winterns received. “We were not looked down upon for our seniority,” she said. “In fact our ‘younger’ perspective was something valuable to the firm. It is a great environment.”
The Winterns agreed that the internship helped them see ‘Big Law’ in a new light. “There is a misconception about a big law firm,” Nalini Ramdeo said. “This internship completely changed that perception. It is such a warm and welcoming place. The environment is a place that really lets individuals be themselves. This has been one of the best experiences in my career so far.”
The five also met with women on the tech team, and enjoyed a lunch specifically devoted to women in tech at the firm. “The women in the technology department didn’t sugarcoat the difficulties of being a woman in tech, but they helped present a realistic picture of women and work life integration, especially in this field,” said Iasha Sakandar. The Winterns left with new skills, new friends and new mentors. As one noted: “These weeks passed so fast – we were first being welcomed and then it was time to go! I look forward to being in touch in the future. This is a place where you can count on people.”