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As I had briefly mentioned in the full biographical information, my employment began after I purchased a new computer in 10th grade. That summer, having just turned 16, I applied to CVS, and obtained the job. Coincidentally, the manager was the husband of my math teacher that year. I started out as a cashier, and became interested in photo, which I pursued. I worked there for two more years, until college time came, since I would be living out at Stony Brook. I really enjoyed the job and the people with whom I worked, and it was with sadness that I left. I promised I would be back, during breaks and such.

Fortunately, I had another coincidence. The manager that had succeeded the first one a few months after I started, but had left a few months before I graduated, ended up managing the CVS in Port Jefferson, 10 minutes away from the school. I had hopes of working there, but circumstances (namely car insurance) prohibited me from bringing my car with me to commute to work. For the first semester, I did not get a job. I returned home and worked at CVS there during intercession. School started up again in February, and so I left again for a while, figuring I would return during Spring Break. A coincidental series of events allowed me to work at Port Jefferson after all.

In the winter of 2002 (while I was in 12th grade), I took my black belt test for Tae Kwon Do. I had started back in the summer before 7th grade, but various medical issues hampered me, until in late 9th grade, with one belt (and about a month before the test) to go until my black belt, a knee injury forced me to stop. In mid-summer before 12th grade, I resolved to complete my black belt. The test, only given twice a year, was in early December. I had forgotten nearly everything, having been absent for 3 years, but I managed to relearn everything by the time the test approached. In late November, about 2 weeks before the test, I sprained my ankle, badly. I managed to return to my feet by Monday, with crutches, and with a week to go, I resumed training, and passed the test. My ankle continued to give me trouble, however.

My ankle still giving me problems a year later (perhaps from the hills of Stony Brook), I was at the podiatrist occasionally, and we decided I should get an MRI. That March, after school resumed, I had one; my mom drove out to Stony Brook and we went to a place close by before I had class. While we were out, I asked if we could stop in at the CVS at which my old manager was working. She was there and was delighted to see me, and asked if I still wanted to work for her. I told her that I would love to, but I lacked transportation. She said that they would drive me back and forth. So I worked there for the remainder of the school year, and returned to CVS at home during spring break and summer vacation.

When I came back during the summer, however, conditions under the new manager that had replaced her the previous year had deteriorated. Increasingly having to do the work of multiple people at once, I began searching for another job, when another series of events gave me just that. The mother of my younger brother's friend became friends with my mother, as is often the case with early childhood friendships, and their family was looking to buy a computer, during the summer between 11th and 12th grade, and I helped them do so. Later on, during my spring break this year, with spyware and adware taking over the computer, they asked me if I could help fix it, which I did, cheaply. In return, I asked that they spread the word around to anyone else who needed assistance with their PC. Towards the end of the school year, the father, a contractor, did just that: one of his customers owned an auto salvage yard, and needed assistance.

When I came home from school, I helped them fix their computer, as best as I could (it is running Me on its original installation from four years ago, but is inadequate to run XP; they cannot format and lose saved passwords, which rules out 2000: since Me came out after 2000, it is not a possible upgrade path as far as setup is concerned). Impressed with me, the owner offered me a job. He wanted me to help them sell parts on eBay, and inventory their cars using a laptop they had bought but never really learned to utilize. (This was precisely the time when I was searching for a job to replace CVS). I started work there soon after; he learned from his contacts that his hopes for eBay were a bit grander than reality, so that never actually got done, but I did inventory the yard's cars throughout the summer. I finished the backlog on his yard far sooner than expected, and so actually began helping out at two other yards as well, before I decided to take time off before school started again. Once school resumed, I returned to CVS at Port Jefferson once more, and sought an internship for the summer.

I obtained an internship at Applied Visions, Inc. as a software developer. My experience with C# due to WeathAlert paid off, and was in large part why I was hired. My assignment was to re-write their main project-hours management software in .NET; the version that they were currently running was originally written in Visual Basic 5 and had undergone numerous revisions to the point where it was more-or-less impossible to work with. The project seemed deceptively simple, but as my colleague and I went along we quickly realized that it was a gigantic undertaking. The project introduced me to SQL and .NET remoting, with which I didn't have any prior experience. It was completed just as the summer was winding down, and I was asked to stay on during the school year to help with another .NET-based project, so that is where I stand right now.

[Last Modifed: 6/2005]

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