Summer Internship Series: A Summer of Creating Relationships

Nicolas Valdiviezo ‘18

Advance Analytics summer intern, Dun & Bradstreet, Short Hills, New Jersey

I am Nicolas Valdiviezo from Lima, Peru. At Denison, I am a senior pursuing BA degree in Computer Science and Economics, with a Mathematics minor. The past summer I had the honor to intern in the Advance Analytics Department at Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) Headquarters in Short Hills New Jersey.  D&B is a 176-year-old B2B data company that help their clients with analytics and data for them to grow relationships with other companies, they are in the relationship business and use data to make sure these are good. This company possess rich and meaningful business data of 265 million companies around the globe that is updated every day thousands of times to have the most up to date insights. D&B had set a standard in the business industry with the DUNS number, that uniquely identifies each company, and is a must in any business partnership, loan application, etc. Another great aspect is the great company culture they promote, for which they are 2017 Best Place to Work in NJ. The internship program there has been growing since 2012 from 25 interns to 108 around the world this last summer. There I have meet some of the most creative, smart and proactive people; and they believe that an internship is a learning opportunity.

The Advance Analytics Department is the one in charge of creating and delivering analytics to the company’s client. The first week we full of learning about the company, the culture and meeting key people for my day to day operations. Harold Fernandes, a VP / Sr. Leader and my supervisor, took several hours that week to talk to me, define expectation and explain to me his vision of the department, and update me in the current situation of the department. He gave me the tools and knowledge to be successful in there. I performed a very flexible roll. The first weeks I was doing research and summaries for Harold on different topics related to implementing analytics. I learned a lot about the process of models and how the company takes care of the client’s business. After the first two weeks, Harold would check on my work load daily and I reported and met him a weekly on my progress and the working environment.

However, my roll changed a lot after I was presented with the opportunity to work with one of the modelers, Cris, on increasing performance of one of their models. I worked side by side with him learning about his work and how his algorithms worked. One of the main expectation I had about this internship was that I was going to have the chance to make an impact in the company’s operation or people. Cris, gave the chance to use what I learned at Denison’s Computer Science department on his work. Together we reached improvements on the model’s execution time by at least a factor of six. It was a great learning opportunity for both of us. And certainly, let me feel that I had an impact.

The company was full with employees willing to talk to all interns and give advice. Interns had the change to attend sessions with executives, lunch and made appointments with chief officers of the company. We even had breakfast with the CEO. It made me realize what a good work place looks like and how serving leadership works. In addition, interns and employees participate on volunteering for nonprofit organizations during the Dun & Bradstreet Do good week. D&B was a great place to work in, I learned a lot about the operations of the company and the department, the employees do listen and expect the interns to give input and be collaborative, they create learning opportunities like workshops, special guest speakers, and more importantly they make you feel part of the company as one of their own. They abide by their values of being data inspired, relentlessly curious and inherently generous every day.