A learning process for everyone

30 August 2022

Two trainees have been working at DNS Belgium in recent months. Dulce Aguilar is a graphic designer and this year she completed the two-year programme for Graduate Certificate in programming at the UCLL (University College Leuven-Limburg) in Leuven. Aroen Van Remmen is attending the same programme.  

A good complement of skills  

“I became interested in the internship project 'CSS restyling of internal application' because I am attracted by everything that has to do with the front-end, but at the same time I wanted to seize the opportunity to hone my skills in the back-end. There was a nice balance between the two,” says Dulce. “Learning other technologies, in this case Apache's template engine, Velocity and DNS Belgium naturally appealed to me as well.” 

Aroen worked as a Full Stack Developer on the Mercator project, our open source crawler while Dulce adapted the look-and-feel of an internal application to our corporate identity and made functional improvements. “This was very interesting for us because Dulce has a background in web design and is now studying programming. So she could work on both the design and the application itself,” says internship supervisor Veerle. “But Aroen also liked to work on the front-end,” says internship supervisor Maarten. “At DNS Belgium we are less good at that, so that was a good addition.” 

Dulce Aguilar & Aroen Van Remmen

Need for support  

Such an internship is always a learning process for our staff too. “A good framework is necessary”, says Veerle. “You have to prepare such an internship well, so that the students know which part of our system they are working on. It is also important that there is enough work ready and that it is clearly defined.” 

“Together with Thomas, Veerle was always eager to help and guide me. That always made me feel supported and I was self-assured to propose new ideas”, Dulce says.

“Advising and guiding  Aroen was very interesting”, says Quentin who, together with Maarten, assumed the role of internship supervisor. Quentin guided Aroen on the technical level, while Maarten mainly initiated him to the organisation. “For DNS Belgium, it is very refreshing to work with students. They come up with their own original ideas and question things that we just take for granted.” 

As full-fledged members of the engineering team, Dulce and Aroen took part in project meetings, team consultations and scrum meetings. An additional challenge was the hybrid work, where people choose whether to work in the office or from home. 

“I'm proud that I get to supervise students and that DNS Belgium is contributing in this way to the education of students and may also have some social impact”

Open corporate culture  

Apart from the new skills that Aroen acquired and the knowledge he gained, he was particularly surprised by the corporate culture of DNS Belgium. “It is very open. DNS Belgium has a lot of confidence in its staff. The autonomy I was given is a unique opportunity to learn a lot.”

Dulce came to the same conclusion. “You have a great corporate culture which, together with the technical expertise and the cooperation, forms the basis of the success of DNS Belgium in my view. You pay attention to the needs of the customers and to the quality and security of the applications. DNS Belgium is also very focused on the welfare of its employees and spares no effort to raise awareness about digital security among the general public via all kinds of media”. Dulce’s internship had a happy ending as we offered her a permanent contract at DNS Belgium. 

“I'm proud that I get to supervise students and that DNS Belgium is contributing in this way to the education of students and may also have some social impact”, concludes Quentin. 

With this article we support the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.