Career advice given to SBS students during Google office tour

Ally Thibault  Asst. Managing Editor

Joey Johnson  Journal Staff

Office space designed to look like a beach, state-of-the-art napping beds, and Xbox gaming centers were just some of the whimsical sights students saw at Google’s Cambridge office on a tour coordinated by Suffolk’s International Business Club.

Google has existed in Boston since 2004, when it began as only six programmers in a hotel room. It has since expanded to multiple buildings in Kendall Square and with construction continuing today, Google employee Alex Daniels joked: “We’re trying to build a compound, so you’d never have to leave.”

After the tour of the building, four Google employees in sales that have recently graduated college held a panel discussion to give business students insights into transitioning from school to work, and the perks of being a Googler.

Daniels, a Duke University graduate who previously interned at Senator Bob Menendez’s office and financial giant UBS, told students that although he has only worked at Google for a year and four months, he has already been there longer than 49 percent of the staff.

“The majority of employees at Google only stay two years because [the company] hires people with higher aspirations,” said Melanie Roth, who attended the University of Pennsylvania majoring in cognitive science and linguistics before coming to Google.

Daniels and Roth’s majors in college and further career interests aren’t similar to what one might associate with an employee for a behemoth tech company, but their stories are testaments to the diversity and uniqueness of Google.

Natalya Bohm, another one of the panelists, majored in political science and art history at school but is now in sales at Google. While she is still interested in these topics, she felt they would not be good career choices for her. When searching for a job, Bohm suggests students find what they want to be doing day to day. “You’ll be doing it for eight to nine hours a day,” she said.

Daniel Rojas, a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a double major in marketing and global business, spoke about the different clubs and development conferences Google gives its employees the option to join.

“It’s all about being passionate about something,” Rojas said, “It doesn’t matter what it is, honestly.” As a fluent Spanish speaker from Venezuela, Rojas said he would be participating in an upcoming diversity conference in San Francisco that Google is sending him to.

Roth also urged students to work at a job they enjoyed and not settle for a job they hated, warning that “if you stay complacent somewhere for too long, you be stuck there.”

Daniels encouraged students to prioritize their tasks and goals for a career. Without school and a mandatory course track, he told students to be their own motivator. “You have to have a direction in mind…even though nothing’s pushing you that way anymore.”