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Monthly Archives: August 2015

How A Great Idea Can Land You the Chance of A Lifetime: Intern Poster Session to VMworld

Avanti3Avanti Patil is a vCenter Site Recovery Manager Intern and a current Northeastern University student. She works out of the Cambridge, Massachusetts office and is enjoying exploring Boston.

When engineers first think about “virtualization”, the next thing that pops up into their heads is “VMware“. VMware is the virtualization and cloud infrastructure solutions leader in the market because of their world-class products and business standards. The fact that this company was also voted amongst Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For 2015 ensures the healthy working environment for VMware employees. I always wanted to get first-hand experience working with such a huge enterprise. This dream became a reality when I joined VMware as a vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) Intern.

The most notable pattern throughout my internship, in addition to the exciting project work, was the positive interaction and relationship-building opportunities I had with my coworkers. I am grateful to my manager, mentor, and Women Connecting Women mentor — who supported me and pushed me to do my best. I became close to the other interns over the summer, we had a blast together. All the interns bonded on personal level, while completing service learning for Avanti2the Boys & Girls Club, participating in Codezilla, and exploring historic Boston.

My goal from this internship forward is to interact with different people across teams and understand VMware’s work culture through these conversations. The social gatherings help to keep in touch with people who share similar interests, and are also an opportunity to share new ideas — not just about work, but about the city and its people.

As an intern, I’ve been exposed to a lot of cool new products and the cultural impact has left me speechless. The Intern Poster Session is the best reflection of this. The Poster Session is a science fair-type event at the culmination of the Summer Internship Program. Each intern, or group of interns, creates a poster to showcase their project work or propose a new idea. Judges and participants decide on the best ideas presented. The best part of Intern Poster Session was interacting with the coworkers who have been working on VMware products since inception, and watching them get intrigued by my idea! The response to my project was overwhelming, which led me to win the Poster Session.

The prize for winning the Poster Session was an invitation to VMware’s annual technology conference, VMworld. At the conference, I hope to grow network by continuing to interact with new professionals, learn valuable career tips from keynote speakers, and have an awesome time celebrating the company that has helped me realize my dreams!

Be sure to virtually join me on my journey as I “take over” the @vmwareu Instagram account on Monday, August 31 to help kick off VMworld.

— Avanti Patil

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Veteran Employee Spotlight: Bryan Salek

IMG_5614Bryan Salek is a Networking and Security Systems Engineer Specialist. He is an Air Force veteran that currently works for VMware from a home office in Tampa, Florida.

What inspired you to pursue your current career? “I’ve always been in IT, but after my military service I lost the love of my job I had while in the Air Force. I had a friend at VMware that referred me to a Technical Account Manager opening. This is my third position at VMware in 8 years and I never want to leave. It is very different from active service, but what is the same is the common sense of purpose and desire of my coworkers to go above and beyond every day.”

How has your service in the military empowered you at VMware? “I served as a Staff Officer in two separate large organizations, so communication skills, specifically presenting, were honed. Further, I had performed requirements analysis and product studies several times, so I understand what customers are looking for”.

How do VMware’s EPIC2 (Execution, Passion, Integrity, Customers and Community) values align with the military’s values? “More than the actual roles I performed, I think what I enjoyed best about my service time was the dedication of my coworkers, including superiors, peers and subordinates. We were willing to do whatever it took to get the job done. This was taken to extremes while serving a tour in the Middle East and while at U.S. Central Command on (and after) 9-11. When I came to VMware 8 years ago, the startup mentality was still very prevalent and I saw that same dedication…Still, 8 years and over 13,000 additional employees [later], I see a lot of that passion and dedication throughout the organization. I hope that never leaves, and that I never do either.”

Share a favorite VMware experience: “Every customer visit is a great experience. The first time I demonstrated vMotion, the faces in the room lit up with awe. Over the years, we have saved customers so much money and empowered them to change the way they operate to such a degree; they are always welcoming. And even after all these years, we continue to innovate with new game-changing technologies. I’m currently telling the story of virtual networking and security, and the amazement of how easy it is to achieve such incredible benefits produces the same reaction those vMotion demos did all those years ago.”

What advice would you share with someone looking to transition from the military to the corporate world? “It isn’t an easy decision, so you should definitely take your time and understand what you want and why you are considering the move. Whatever your reason, my best advice is to approach your new career the same way you approach your next mission, next assignment, or next project with absolute passion and energy! Corporations like VMware appreciate, and even nurture, this. And if you feel out of place in doing so, you might want to continue looking….”


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Empowered, Innovating, Fearless: VMware’s Fearless Leader Student Summit Attendees are Tomorrow’s Tech Leaders


Tracie Ehrlich is the University Relations Experience Program Coordinator at VMware’s headquarters in Palo Alto. As a recent graduate, she loves working with her team to give interns and new grads the best experience possible. Tracie studied English and Film at Northeastern University, and is very excited to write about the University Relations team’s efforts.

The week of August 11th, VMware’s University Relations Team held the inaugural VMware Fearless Leader Student Summit, bringing together leading female students in Computer Science and Technology from colleges across the United States.

These students are leaders in their field, who brought with them a desire to learn and take the lead as trailblazers in Tech. Coming together as a network, the attendees exchanged dialogue and ideas on what it takes to be fearless in Computer Science, and how their individual strengths are even stronger when harnessed with the strengths of others. The wealth of ideas and energy brought to our campus truly made the Fearless Leader Student Summit a beacon for the next generation of technology leadership.

Across seven dynamic sessions, attendees learned what it took to be a fearless leader in Information Technology: bravery in communication and embracing diversity Tracie1in experience and perspective, among many other things. The power of networking was exemplified with attendees making connections at VMware that will stretch across communities and continents.

Victoria Sevilla, VMware’s Senior Manager of Global Talent Development, led several workshops that forged these connections, engaged with the fearless leaders’ inherent talents, and demonstrated how leveraging one’s own power zone leads to better outcomes.

Robin Matlock, Chief Marketing Officer at VMware, was day one’s keynote speaker. Robin shared her experiences as a seasoned marketing executive who believes in the importance of “holding the torch” for other women in Tech. Her advice to persevere and ignore inner and outer doubts held true to attendees, as the importance of remaining your own advocate was discussed amongst all.

Yanbing Li PhD., Vice President and General Manager for Storage and Availability at VMware, gave the keynote address for the conference’s final day. Yanbing reflected on her journey to synthesis between her core identities as a woman in Technology, and as a leader in Tech research and development. Emphasizing the importance of asserting one’s smTracie2arts and talent as a female in the workplace, Yanbing reminded the fearless leaders how crucial it is to create a culture of support and teamwork, rather than one of competition. The fearless leaders discussed the importance of supporting other women in Tech, along with the dangers of sacrificing your own goals, your career “north star,” or long term goals, for short-sighted gains.

The VMware Fearless Leader Student Summit fostered diverse ideas and communication on a vast array of topics affecting the next generation of leaders in technology. Attendees left the Summit having created a synergy and momentum that will carry new ideas and innovation forward to the future of VMware and the world—a future built by fearless leaders.

— Tracie Ehrlich

Inspired to be a part of the community of fearless female leaders in technology? Learn how VMware is empowering women to make an impact in technology while achieving their personal and professional goals. http://vmw.re/1HwL5VD


How Veterans Can Use the GI Bill to Advance Their Careers

July4 Aaron DumbrowAaron Dumbrow is a Senior Systems Engineer in VMware Healthcare. He is an Army veteran who now works from a home office in Oregon.

“Those things which are precious are saved only by sacrifice.”
― Stephen E. Ambrose, Band of Brothers: E Company, 506th Regiment,
101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler’s Eagle’s Nest

Our nations’ veterans put their lives on hold, sacrificing what they want to protect the ideals of freedom and justice. For many of us who have served, we look back at this time as some of the greatest times of our lives. When we transition from military to a civilian career, many of us are highly successful because of exceptional leadership, values, and the benefits we earned while we served.

Traditionally, the GI Bill is used for attendance at a four-year college or university. For so many of our veterans, skills obtained prior to or during military service more effectively transition to trade schools or a certification in their field. Unfortunately, for many of our veterans, the benefits they have sacrificed so much for go unused because they do nograduation Aaron Dunbrowt attend a community college or a four-year university, or simply don’t understand how the benefits can be used. The GI Bill covers a number of technical and vocational programs as well as high-tech training, licensing and certifications, including VMware certifications.

Leaving the Army and transitioning to college was an incredibly difficult decision. While I qualified for vocational rehabilitation, the VA counselor would not sign off on my request to go into the IT field. It was 2003, the tech bubble was still a painful memory, and the industry was still recovering. I was adamant that I wanted to be in the high tech field, so I took my GI Bill, and worked my way through college supporting my family while attending school in the evening. As it turns out, that was the best choice I could have made. The GI Bill enabled me to move my career to the next level, and more importantly, instilled a desire to learn constantly through formal and informal methods.

For many of our nation’s veterans, the transition from military life is more challenging than the battlefield. Many have spent much of their adult life following orders, wearing a uniform, and often working in a field, which may not translate to civilian life. Adjusting to a trade or an office setting requires education, and a shift in focus. Even when transitioning from a military to civilian career within the same field, education coupled with experience makes t0045 Aaron Dubrowhe veteran stand out above their peers.

As a veteran and a VMware employee, I am proud to announce that VMware certifications and training are covered by the GI Bill. This will allow those who have sacrificed so much an opportunity to be successful in their civilian career transitions, keeping current with rapidly changing technologies.

The process requires that you apply through the Department of VA Online Application portal, or contact them directly for the application. The details of the application process can be found on the VA website.VMware certifications are broken into several categories covering Datacenter Virtualization, Cloud Management and Automation, Network Virtualization, and Desktop and Mobility. Each category has four levels ranging from Associate to Design Expert. The table above shows the breakdown of certifications. More information can be found on the VMware Certification website.

Holding a number of technical certifications, I have always looked at my VMware certifications as the most valuable, simply because I see this as the future of our industry.

We are grateful for those who are willing to sacrifice for us, to enable us to build our lives, our families, and our livelihood. Without our nation’s veterans, our story would be so much different, and we owe them more than we can repay. Helping our veterans use the benefits they have earned is something we should all do with pride, giving them a hand so they can grow their post-military careers successfully in whatever direction they choose.

–Aaron Dumbrow

To learn more about how to use the GI Bill and what benefits VMware Certifications have, please use these links:


VMware Certification Portal: http://mylearn.vmware.com/portals/certification/?ui=www_edu

VMware Certification FAQ’s: https://mylearn.vmware.com/portals/certification/?menu=faq

Defining Communities, Redefining Myself: An Intern’s Take on Giving Back through Service Learning

Aadi2Aditya Gorantala, who prefers to be called Aadi, is a full-time MBA student at Mays Business School, Texas A&M University. He currently works as a Partner Compliance Analyst Intern from the VMware Austin, Texas office.

One of the most important lessons I learned in business school is to work at a place where your personal values resonate. I grew up learninAadi3g to give back to those who haven’t been lucky. Helping others gives an instant dose of contentment and empowerment to your daily life. Beginning at VMware, I presumed that I would have limited opportunities to volunteer due to the length of my summer internship.

Instead, I discovered that through the VMware Foundation full-time employees and interns alike can spend 40 service learning hours in their communities. The choice of charity is completely up to the individual. This excited me, and I began to search for volunteer opportunities. Then, a surprise was in store – one of my fellow interns suggested a day at the Austin Animal Center caring for the dogs and cats.

I was scared of pets back in my home country of India, so it took awhile before I decided to sign up. As the day arrived and the group of 10 VMware employees met at the Center, I challenged myself to overcome my fear of these four-legged wonders. We walked countless dogs that otherwise would be stuck in the kennel during the humid Austin afternoon. In no time, I was comfortable with my newfound, furry friends.

Looking back, did I make a change to the community? The number of people thanking us as we left the Austin Animal Center made it understood that our contribution was substantial. It’s true that a little help goes a long way.

It’s a matter of perspective — the benefit to me was learning something new. In providing service for others, I conquered my fear, networked with new friends, and obtained a greater understanding of the problems in our community and how I could give back. Above all, it was fun.

I can’t believe I am paid to do this, and more. This realization is a big deal because, for once, I have found a place where my personal values align with the business’s values. That place is VMware!

— Aadi Gorantala

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VMware Interns Networking All Over the World

Andrei1Andrei Mario Dinu recently finished his second year at the University Politehnica of Bucharest, where he is pursuing a bachelors degree in Computer Science and Engineering. He is a Member of Technical Staff Intern working in VMware’s Sofia, Bulgaria office. For more on Andrei’s experience, follow him via twitter handle @dinuand.

The first time I heard of VMware was during my freshman year at the University Politehnica of Bucharest (UPB), in a course called “Operating System Usage.” UPB is one of the top universities, and best in Computer Science and Engineering in my home country of Romania. I remember working on a homework assignment using VMware Workstation and playing with virtual machines. For the first time, I was familiarizing myself with virtualization. I realized that programming and I would be very good friends. In addition to my internal passion, my teachers, family, and friends inspired me to continuously follow my dreams and passion for technology.

It was this support system that sparked the interest in VMware that eventually progressed into my current internship. UPB has a program that exists exclusively to match up students with summer internships. Many of my fellow classmates are happy to share their experiences and refer others to companies they have interned with. In my case, I took advantage of both opportunities. Impressed by a former Romanian VMware intern who told me about his progress and experience, I also wanted to do something meaningful during the summer. So, joining VMware as an intern for 13 weeks was the perfect deal!

I’m so glad to be part of an awesome VMware community in Sofia! I trust my coworkers because when I’m facing an obstacle, they always give help and advice. More than anything else, I enjoyAndrei3 the highest level of transparency in everything my colleagues or I do. They want me to be successful, so the whole team can be successful. It’s also very fun working here. We have beer bashes every Thursday — everybody gets together, cools off with a beer, and shares stories of the week that’s passed. Sometimes, coworkers challenge each other to solve problems as fast as possible (We are geeks, so we enjoy this).

Internships are one of the coolest things you can do in your life, especially as a young professional entering the tech field. The interns are respected at VMware in whichever location they may be working from. The experience might differ between locale, but not that much. At VMware sites all over the world, the interns are simply dabbling with magic in a highly productive environment!

–Andrei Mario Dinu

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VMware Summer Internship Program Recap

Shawn Sigona1Shawn Sigona is the Global Intern Program Manager at VMware. Although based at Palo Alto headquarters, he strives to progress the global internship program and ensures that each intern has the best experience possible.

This year, we had over 450 interns in 35 offices, globally! Though our interns work from far and wide, in locales such as China and Bulgaria, the bulk of our summer interns are from the Americas region. In the US alone, there are 265 interns!

To kick off our summer, each location had its own intern welcome event. Headquarters in PaloShawnSigona6 Alto hosted a scavenger hunt across our 105 acre campus! While participating, our interns learned fun facts about VMware and familiarized themselves with important landmarks they would need to know to get around. These welcome events empower interns to engage with each other and the VMware community.

On the subject of community, the Internship Program empowers interns to engage with their local community as well. Through the VMware Foundation, all VMware employees receive Service Learning paid time off to donate their time to a charitable cause — interns are also encouraged to take advantage of this wonderful benefit. In our Cambridge, Massachusetts office, our ShawnSigona3interns donated their time to the local Boys and Girls Club that sorely needed attention. The Cambridge interns spent half the day organizing the local community center. In Palo Alto, the interns donated half a day to Hidden Villa, a local non-profit farm that donates a portion of the organic, sustainable crops they grow to feed families in need of healthy food. In total, the interns logged over 170 hours of service!

Throughout the summer, our interns were empowered to attend events where Sr. Leadership, C-level executives, and Principal Researchers spoke about various topics, ranging from how they ended up in their current position to highly technical research. This level of executive leadership engagement encouraged our interns to ask questions and be fearless leaders.

At the end of summer, each intern had the opportunity to present their summer’s work to the greater VMware community. For the interns in Cambridge and Palo Alto, we hosted a science fair-type event called the “Intern Poster Session”. We had several hundred people in attendance who voted on their favorite project. This was the first time non-technical interns participated in the Intern Poster Session and the MBA Finance interns rose to the challenge, winning the grand prize – an all-expense paid trip to VMworld!


The End of Summer Celebration is the ceremonious farewell to our summer intern group. In Cambridge, MA the interns went to a 3-story Boston bowling alley. The Austin, TX interns enjoyed a day of golf at Top Golf. Our Palo Alto, CA interns went on a guided stroll through the botanical gardens in San Francisco followed by an afternoon of exploring the California Academy of Sciences. It’s always bittersweet to celebrate our interns’ accomplishments, and then have to say goodbye until next year.

VMware wishes our interns a productive school year ahead. We’ll see you all on campus this fall!

— Shawn Sigona

Search the latest job opportunities for New Grads at VMware

Search the latest internship & Co-Op opportunities for students at VMware

Visit the VMware Careers Site to learn more about the VMware University Relations Program

Learn more about the workplace culture at VMware, see pictures of our offices, connect with our team, and get real time job openings by following us on our social pages:




The Passion Behind VMware’s Veteran Hiring Initiative

Sarah Clark is a Program Manager in Staffing Operations who specializes in diversity hiring. She works from the Austin, TX office. Lynette Estrada is a Staffing Manager working in Reston, VA. 

Sarah ClarkFor the past few years, Lynette and I worked on methods and strategies to attract top talent from the military and veteran community to VMware. Because we both come from families of veterans, there is a personal interest in driving VMware’s veteran hiring initiative, an understanding of the values and level of dedication that veterans bring to the job, and how these values align to our shared EPIC2 company values.

We first explored Education with Industry programs, where mid-level military officers would receive 10 months of skills building and experience at a specific company, which can be reapplied in their military position upon their return. Two years later, Porter Clapp, a Director in our Public Sector team and an Air Force veteran, contacted us about applying to the Air Force Education With Industry (EWI) program. With the additional momentum for diversity at VMware, we felt that the time had arrived to implement this program.

Porter spent a lot of time with EWI leaders and people running EWI programs at other companies to understand their programs and what it would take for VMware to join. It was to be the first program of its kind in the US – and if we were to do it, we wanted to do it right. So, our diverse team worked together to craft a program outline to present to our business leaders.EWI application front page

Any time you bring forward a new program, there are legitimate questions about the operational model, risks and benefits, costs, commitments – it gets scrutinized from every angle. We worked hard, and supportive managers gave us valuable feedback. We presented our idea to our first round of business leaders. After the presentation, there was silence. The first statement came from a VP who said he was looking for the drawback — and he couldn’t find even one. We had a few more meetings with similar results. The responses were enthusiastic and very positive. A few managers even asked if we planned to sign up with similar programs at the other military branches.

As we received VMware leadership approval to apply to the program, we learned the Air Force was not looking for more industry partners to join.  Rather, they were removing long-standing EWI participants to align with Air Force requirements. The Air Force program managers informed us it may take a year to consider VMware for the program.

That did not deter our team. We spent weeks developing the application: encouraging business units to present us with opportunities that we could include within our application, even organizing a roundtable with our internal veterans group to understand the messaging and ideas that would really resonate on our application.  We developed a multimedia presentation that explained VMware’s culture, leadership, and value to people and customers.  We appealed to the military’s core values and highlighted the unique opportunities a military officer would receive spending a year at VMware.

At last, our application was submitted. Then began the wait. Waiting was difficult as countless supporters followed up about the status of our application. To distract ourselves and to be positive, we developed an action plan with next steps.

Finally came the news. VMware was accepted in the program! The Air Force took steps to place VMware in the 2015 – 2016 academic year, recognizing VMware’s outstanding culture and value, and assigning an officer to VMware beginning August 2015. Our student hasn’t started yet, but we have met with him and are already impressed with his drive and passion for this assignment. Our goal is to be recognized as an employer of choice based on building relationships with such organizations. We look forward to a long-term partnership with this program.

— Sarah Clark