February 16, 2012

Giving startups a starting point

Phil Duffy, Computer Networking ’12

Co-op Employer: Terrible Labs

Co-op Position: Junior Developer

Hometown: Fairfield, CT

Build to Last
When Phil Duffy, BSCN ’12, got his own computer at age 10, the first thing he did was take it apart. “My dad walked in and saw what I did and was terrified,” he said with a laugh. Duffy assumed he would just remember where the pieces all went, and, thankfully, he was right.

More than Maintenance
A co-op semester at Terrible Labs—a web consultancy company that designs, builds, and creates web-based and mobile applications—offered Duffy the opportunity to grow. Duffy’s role, which he has continued part time, is to act as a tech consultant to various startup companies, giving him the opportunity to implement his ideas and explore a different career path. “I’ve realized that I don’t like to just fix things, I like to create things,” says Duffy. In addition to developing a company’s website and setting up a framework for them to maintain, Duffy was also asked to participate in brainstorming meetings that were crucial to the development of the companies.  

A Promising Future
With his job at Terrible Labs and training in the web development software Ruby on Rails, Duffy’s marketable skills are already getting him job offers. For now though, Duffy plans to stay at Terrible Labs to learn as much as he can. “I decided to surround myself with incredibly smart people and hope that some of that intelligence wears off on me. I think it’s working so far but I know I still have a lot more to learn from them.”

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