Senior computer science major, Aaron Llanos, admits he didn’t quite have the advanced skills for eBay, but his character got him the job.
“I was definitely hired for the passion and potential [eBay] saw in me. They really liked my work,” Aaron says.
The work that Aaron showed eBay was the Longhorn Center for Academic Excellence website and the Men of Excellence website he has developed. While managing the LCAE site is Aaron’s job, his work with service organization Men of Excellence is strictly volunteer-based. Aaron says his two responsibilities with the site were a lot of work, but the hard work paid off. Literally.
“Without either of them I wouldn’t have made it to eBay. Those two projects were my gateway to something larger outside of college,” Aaron says.
His internship rewarded him with a handsome compensation and a new MacBook pro. “They treat you like royalty,” Aaron says.
His summer was spent in the largest city within Silicon Valley– San Jose, California. Aaron had gone to Los Angeles every other summer, but seldom went out of Los Angeles. Being away from his family in El Paso was a nostalgic experience for him.
“It was extremely hard. They weren’t just a six-hour drive away. They were a lot further. It made me realize I’m growing up,” Aaron says.
Growing up means getting a job, and Aaron says that in the meantime the best way to prepare yourself for the workforce is to get internships.
“Getting an internship is like getting to hit the ‘do-over’ button on a career. When you’re in a career you can’t quit cause you need the career. An internship will teach you what you like in a workplace and how you should act.”
But in some ways, Aaron says applying to internships is a lot like college.
“I applied to several places. Never apply to only one place, “Aaron says.
While El Paso will always be home, he looks forward to seeing what the world has in store for him.
“I would really like to start off at a large company for the first five years to get on my feet and get established in the world,” Aaron says.
One day he may even start his own company.
“Maybe one day I’ll build a startup on the side. I’d love to be my own boss,” Aaron says.
No doubt, it’s a reality waiting to happen for this Longhorn.