This post was authored by Sanya Sachdeva, a CX intern on our Global TAC Team.
During my second year of college, COVID-19 made remote learning challenging for computer science students due to unreliable internet and unsuitable study spaces. The shift to online also hindered in-person collaboration and networking, making it difficult to work on projects and connect with peers and professors. Additionally, the pandemic impacted job and internship opportunities in my field. So, when my college was looking for Cisco Campus Ambassadors, I eagerly filled out the form for the program without any hesitation.
Although I had not learned networking basics yet, I was determined to do my best. I used the internet excessively. I even spent hours with my father, asking him to explain everything he knew about Cisco and basic networking concepts between his meetings.
Fortunately, I received an interview call, and after answering several questions about Cisco, I was ecstatic to learn that I had aced it! From that moment on, I knew that it was going to be an extraordinary journey.
As a newbie campus ambassador with no prior corporate experience, I immersed myself in Cisco’s websites, webinars, and every event I could attend, determined to succeed. Inspired to share what I learned, I summarized everything into notes and even started a public Instagram page so that others could benefit from my learning. I volunteered in every possible way to represent my college, Amity University, and even contributed to Cisco Ripple’s Instagram Live, becoming the first Amity student to do so.
My fellow Amity Cisco Campus Ambassadors and I organized the first virtual AmiCisco Campus Connect event, where over 1500 students from all over India joined to hear from three incredible Cisco leaders! I was recognized for my efforts with multiple Cisco goodies and received guidance and appreciation from my favourite mentors, Ritesh Kapahi and Samta Katiyar. The success of this event led to three more Pan-India events with Cisco leaders coming to campus, as well as various small club events. I even founded an AmiCisco Club with over 700 members, where students could connect with us ambassadors and learn more about the company.
I was so passionate about learning about Cisco and sharing that with other students that this never felt like work for me. The success of the events and appreciation from leaders gave me so much confidence and pride and helped me grow as a person. I was so grateful for the experience that I wrote a testimonial for Discover Cisco that’s on their website.
After acing my basic networking subject, I took two more elective courses and completed all three modules of the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Networking Academy. When the placement season began, I knew I wanted to intern with Cisco. Luckily, I got the opportunity through the Cisco Ideathon competition. I cleared three rounds of interviews and a proctored test and was one of only three students selected from Amity.
Starting my internship at Cisco in January 2023 was an absolute thrill. Not only did I escape the harsh Delhi winters by moving to Bangalore, but the onboarding experience exceeded my wildest expectations. As soon as I arrived, I felt like part of the Cisco family. I enjoyed all sorts of exciting opportunities, from participating in Cisco Chai Point socials to playing foosball and attending fitness sessions. Everyone is encouraged to “be you, with us,” and that culture is implemented everywhere.
But I’ve never stopped sharing what I’ve learned with others. Now, I am an Early In Career Buddy for my university, responsible for connecting Cisco and the school by partnering with Campus Ambassadors to manage various engagements. I have been drawing from my own experiences to motivate students at my college, encouraging them to take proactive steps and strive for excellence in their professional paths.
My Cisco internship was truly life-changing. I learned a lot and enjoyed working in a collaborative and inclusive environment. I’m grateful for the chance to make meaningful contributions to the company’s products and to learn from exceptional individuals. Cisco’s reputation is well-deserved, and I felt like a valued member of the team. It was an unforgettable experience I will always cherish, and I am thrilled to continue my career journey with the company as a full-time Technical Consulting Engineer!
Interested in a Cisco internship? Explore opportunities with Emerging Talent.