URBN

7 Things I Learned From My First Software Engineering Internship

Software Engineering at URBN

Between Wednesday Sips and weekend brunch and countless escapades through the city this summer, I began my career as a software developer.

I got to attend daily stand-ups and work on tickets for the Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie iOS apps with the other engineers, and had an opportunity to lead a three-intern team in developing Snap & Match as part of my intern project. This internship made me learn a lot about good software engineering habits, both technical and non-technical. Here are some of the big ones.

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Introducing Snap & Match, an (Unofficial) Urban Outfitters iOS Application

I’ve been devoting a good amount of time over the last two weeks to my new girlfriend, a real cutie who is a personal stylist of sorts at Urban Outfitters.

She’s pretty, knowledgeable, and can make anyone look fantastic. Her name is Snap & Match … and she’s an iOS application that I’ve developed for my summer intern project with Billy as the backend developer and Natalie as the UI designer. Her codebase is all Swift/Objective-C code (no storyboards for me!). It was truly a pleasure getting to know iOS development through her.

Sad analogy aside, I’m actually really excited to show you this app. It’s something that fifteen-year-old me, who only wore the colors navy and white, would have appreciated. They do say to be the person you needed when you were younger, so…

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Black Scalloped Dress + Life Update

Black Dress Fishtown Philadelphia

Black Dress Fishtown Philadelphia

Black Dress Fishtown Philadelphia

Monteau dress | A’gaci wedges

I promise I haven’t been ignoring you — lots has been going on.

There have been very few moments lately where I can sit down and write something that doesn’t read like complete garbage. Every day of this summer has been one of those days where events unfold so quickly that I can barely wrap my head around them, like the kind where yesterday feels like a week ago because so much has happened since then.

So. Grab some coffee or an enjoyable snack, and let me tell you what I’ve been up to since I last really posted.

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A Visit to URBN’s Distribution Center & Terrain

URBN Intern Visit to Distribution Center and Terrain

URBN Intern Visit to Distribution Center and Terrain

A few days ago I visited URBN’s East Coast distribution center with a few other interns.

Located in Gap, Pennsylvania, this center handles both store and direct-to-consumer merchandise. I learned a lot about how product is received, ticketed, handled, and shipped at URBN. I also got to see Terrain, URBN’s plant-nursery-slash-café.

URBN Intern Visit to Distribution Center and Terrain

URBN Intern Visit to Distribution Center and Terrain

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An Interview with Natalie, Urban Outfitters UX/UI Design Intern

URBN UX/UI Design Intern Natalie

Behind every great app interface is a great designer.

Natalie is a UX/UI Design intern for Urban Outfitters. Her team creates the visual part of the apps that my team implements in code (I’ve actually done this a few times, so it was really cool to see the Urban app from an artist’s perspective). We talked about how much work actually goes into those advertising emails that appear in your inbox, Intern Interview Day, and how a creative project can make your intern application shine.

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An Interview With Billy, URBN Business Analyst Intern

URBN Business Analyst Intern Billy

Not all interns at URBN work directly with clothing or with only one brand.

Billy is a Business Analyst intern whose job is to pull and analyze data from URBN’s three main brands: Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, and Free People. We talked about working with large amounts of data, landing an internship without going through the normal application process, and the cute dogs running all over the Navy Yard.

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An Interview with Carlie, BHLDN Dress Buying Intern

Not gonna lie, “dress-buying intern” sounds like my dream job. ?

Carlie works with BHLDN (pronounced “beholden”), URBN’s wedding brand that specializes in bridal gowns, bridesmaid dresses, accessories, and décor. We talked about what a buyer’s job is really like, how it feels to transition from store associate to Home Office employee, aesthetics, and interviewing tips.

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URBN Internship Welcome BBQ & Orientation

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

Lilly Pulitzer dress | Franco Sarto heels

This week I started my internship at URBN.

It’s been a really intense yet enjoyable time — I’ve never experienced anything like it before. I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking here and dive into my day-to-day activities in a future post.

Sunday kicked off the program with a barbeque for the Intern Class of 2017. I hadn’t taken the train or subway in upwards of two years, so I left early to make it to the Home Office on time. I was blown away by the aesthetic of Building 3, where the event was being held. It’s all white walls and big windows and photo-ready backdrops. Later I learned that they used the space to do photoshoots.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

I kinda want to decorate my future house like this, not gonna lie.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

Pretty soon, people started trickling in. There were 77 total interns working in various departments, from buying to finance to styling to social media to IT. Everyone was super well-dressed and excited to be there — meeting and greeting them reminded me of college orientation, only instead of “hey, what’s your major?”, we were asking “hey, what department are you working in?”

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

Food came soon after, and oh boy did they feed us — I’m pretty sure I’m unofficially known as “that one intern who held up the food line by taking a million pictures.” The food at my college is notoriously horrible, though, so I wasn’t about to wolf it all down without snapping a few first 😉

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

The quickest way to my heart is through cute old-fashioned sodas …

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

And pretty salads …

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

And colorful paper straws …

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

And cookies and s’mores dip.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

After lunch, we went on a tour of the premises. This was my tour group! URBN’s buildings are located close together and the entire place feels like a very aesthetically pleasing college campus.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

This is a wall made of stereos that play music from various Urban Outfitters/Free People/Anthropologie stores around the world.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

They change this vase up every once in a while to reflect one particular brand’s style. I’m pretty sure this one is Free People.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

These decorative chains were from the original Navy Yard buildings.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

Jharoka is the Home Office’s coffee shop.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

These koi had the same proportions as my upper leg — they’re the biggest koi I’ve seen in my life.

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

URBN Summer Internship 2017 Welcome BBQ

The next day was Orientation, where each intern was actually taken to their respective teams. This is my desk before I started decorating — there’s a lot more color to it now!

I can’t believe I’ve already been here for a week; more details to come ASAP. There’s still no Wi-Fi at my house — hopefully, that gets sorted out soon so I can get back to posting regularly.

Mimi Chenyao