Force to the Future! Meet Security Intern Jade Meyer
At Salesforce, we take the future pretty seriously. Whether that means pioneering software as a service (SaaS), helping businesses and communities pursue their loftiest goals, or leaving the planet better than we found it. And when it comes to security, we take a collaborative, education-focused approach, investing in tools, training, and support for everyone who works for and with us. So it should come as no surprise that we also take our Futureforce Summer Intern Program pretty seriously. You know, youth being the future and all.
But what exactly is it like to be a Security intern for the summer? For starters, interns get to work on real projects that affect how our business runs, giving them the opportunity to make a tangible impact on the future of our company. Not to mention growing their own strong, diverse networks and having plenty of fun while they’re at it. But don’t take our word for it.
We picked the super-bright brain of Salesforce Security intern Jade Meyer, who joined us for Summer ‘21, to learn a bit more about what it’s like to be a Futureforcer!
So Jade, do you want to introduce yourself? Can you tell us what you’re studying and what your personal career goals are?
Sure! Hi everyone! I’m Jade, I’m from New York City and a rising junior at Cornell, majoring in Information Science with minors in Psychology and Business. I’m the business lead on Cornell Baja Racing, an engineering project team that builds and races ATVs, and am active in Phi Chi Theta, a business fraternity at my school. I also love to cook new foods, bike, and grow plants! Career-wise, I aspire to start my own company someday or pioneer something that brings together humanities and tech, ideally in the cybersecurity sector. I also hope to create an animal sanctuary someday.
Talk about goals! That’s amazing. So what brought you to Salesforce?
So many things! First of all, Salesforce has an incredible culture that I have never witnessed anywhere — I really felt how the company dedicates itself wholeheartedly to each of its values, and I especially appreciated everyone’s commitment to giving back to others. I also had amazing conversations with the Security Awareness team during my interviews, which played a significant role in my decision.
As someone who is passionate about the intersection between humanities and tech, I felt that this role would be perfect for my interests. Ultimately, I chose Security Awareness because I felt like my work would make a direct, positive impact on protecting others from cyberattacks while ensuring that the human element of tech does not go neglected.
Score one for the humans! Especially this year, since we know it’s been a unique one. What was it like to onboard during a pandemic?
Even though the internship was remote this year, the onboarding team did a fantastic job of filling our initial weeks with plenty of fun activities! There were speaker events, networking opportunities, and even a Futureforce cookout where interns were shipped fresh ingredients to create delicious tacos. Work-wise, I felt like I was given plenty of time to get caught up on everything I needed to know for the summer before diving into my projects. The onboarding experience was incredibly welcoming and exciting, and that atmosphere lasted for the entirety of my internship.
We do like to have fun around here. Once you were up and running, what was your everyday routine like?
Every day was actually really different and I had the opportunity to work on several different types of projects. I would typically log on early and spend a couple of hours working on data analysis or completing solo tasks before the west coast team was online. I really enjoyed taking that time out of the day to get myself in the zone before going to meetings and sharing updates on my projects. There were also some really interesting online events (like speaker sessions and even a virtual safari!), and I would usually go to at least one of those a week. Depending on the day, I might also have a coffee chat with a full-time employee at Salesforce. Somewhere in between, I would eat lunch and take time to go somewhere sunny outside, where I might work for the rest of the day.
What about some of those projects? What did you have a chance to work on?
My favorite project, and the one that I spent most of my time on, was phishing data analysis, in which I evaluated 17 months of data from phishing simulations and real incidents to identify high-risk groups. I analyzed click rates, report rates, and other metrics to determine overall organizational trends, and then I used that data to generate recommendations for future security initiatives. This was my favorite project not only because I could get an incredibly detailed view into the logistics and data behind the team’s phishing simulations, but also because I felt like my conclusions left a genuine impact on the Security Awareness team’s goals.
Our Security Awareness team does run a lot of security training and education programs to keep cybersecurity and cyber hygiene at the top of employees’ minds! What was it like working with them?
One of my favorite things about security is that there is always something new to learn and more work to be done. The Security Awareness team is very focused on the “why” and actively seeking out opportunities to make an impact on both our internal employees and outside audiences. Everyone actively made me feel welcome, and I really appreciated the opportunity to be involved across a wide range of topics. I really felt that I could play an active role in team initiatives beyond what might normally be expected of an intern.
We know you’re passionate about bridging the gap between tech, humanities, and business. How were you able to apply your skills to your projects here?
Studying all three of those fields at the same time has allowed me to communicate technical matters from a less esoteric perspective and generally empathize with a wide range of experiences to deliver the best content for all audiences. This skill was especially useful in this internship because it allowed me to create content that was informational yet easily understandable to those outside of security.
Communication is such an important part of any career! Sounds like you’ve got a great head start on that skill. Was there anything else you learned that you’re taking away with you?
The biggest lesson I’m taking away would be to stay curious and take the initiative to meet new people even if the opportunity doesn’t present itself. The experience of working from home, while challenging, actually motivated me to schedule coffee chats and participate in speaker events that I might not have otherwise. With employees from so many different backgrounds at Salesforce, there are endless opportunities to learn from others’ experiences!
Speaking of experience, do you have any advice for future interns?
I would say don’t let your own lack of experience stop you from seeking out new ones. It can be difficult to ask questions or speak up in meetings when you don’t feel qualified to do so, but it’s impossible to learn new things unless you step outside your comfort zone!
And what’s next for Jade?
I’ll be returning to Cornell this fall and continuing to work on my e-commerce startup in my free time. I’m definitely going to schedule a chat with some of my professors to discuss my experiences this summer — and hopefully introduce more security-related classes to the Computer and Information Science ecosystem at Cornell!
We hire interns and grads across the globe for all of our different business segments. And it’s often been said that a summer at Salesforce is the Best. Summer. Ever. Check out our Futureforce university recruiting and summer internship programs to find your perfect fit!