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Student Highlights

Abhishek Jariwala, Lead Web Developer
9 April 2020
Written By
Military REACH Project Manager
Abhishek Jariwala is the Lead Web Developer for the Military REACH project, and he is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering at Auburn University. Abhishek has been a member of the Military REACH team for over a year, and during this time, he has been instrumental in improving the overall functionalities of the website. Below Abhishek discusses his role at Military REACH, his background in web development, and more!

1. How did you become interested in web development?

I started learning about web development during my undergraduate studies in Computer Science, where I was required to develop web applications in PHP language (i.e., a programing language). Once I graduated with my undergraduate degree, my first project as a freelancer was to develop a website for a local business in India. This project motivated me to learn more and seek more about web development.

2. What are your key responsibilities as a Military REACH web developer?

I am the Lead Architect of the Web Development Team. As a back-end web developer, my primary responsibilities are to code and improve the server-side functionalities (e.g., website search), that when combined with the front-end (i.e., the user interface), help to create a functional, seamless experience for the end-user.

3. What task(s) have you enjoyed the most while working on the Military REACH project and why?

Overall, I have fun being a part of the Military REACH project. What I have enjoyed most has been transforming a single page application to a multiple page application, along with making improvements to the overall website functionalities (e.g., advanced search and search filters) in a short period. These improvements have enhanced the search functionalities and continue to attract more users to our site (as represented from Google Analytics data).

4. What are the skills you have gained from the Military REACH project, particularly the skills you think have prepared you for the workforce?

I started working at Military REACH in Summer 2018. During this time, I have learned Angular and TypeScript, both of which are widely used for single page web applications. Furthermore, I have learned how to work on a large project with people who may not have similar backgrounds (e.g., work and cultural experiences).

5. What are your hobbies (what do you do for fun/to relax)?

I like sports and video games. I recently started learning guitar, which is so relaxing and fun. I also enjoy traveling.

6. Where are you originally from, and was it a big adjustment moving to Auburn, AL?

I am originally from Gujarat, India.

Yes, I can say moving to Auburn was one of the biggest decisions I have made in my life, and it was a big adjustment. However, I would still make the same choice even if I could go back in life to when I just graduated with my undergraduate degree.

7. What are you most proud of about your culture?

India's languages, religions, dance, music, architecture, food, and customs differ from place to place within the country. Indian culture, often labeled as an amalgamation of several cultures, spans across the Indian subcontinent and has been influenced by a history that is several millennia old.

8. Is there anything else you would like to share about yourself?

My wife, Fatemeh Jamshidi, who also works at Military REACH, and I answered this question together. We are so grateful to be part of Military REACH. We love helping people in need and strengthening their relationships by making research accessible. We feel Military REACH is our little family. We discuss our web development thoughts and questions together at home, which makes this serious project fun and entertaining.

Students are an integral part of Military REACH because they provide our team with a new perspective, high-quality products, and invaluable assistance. Continue to look out for our Student Highlights, where we will feature students from our team and will highlight the contributions they have made not only to our team, but to the larger military community.

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