Tech Skills + Appetite for Travel Lead McArthur ’19 to TripAdvisor
When he was growing up, Drew McArthur ’19 had never traveled outside of the United States. Fast forward to Hamilton, and between his natural affinity for writing code and a semester abroad in Denmark, McArthur realized a new passion. Putting his instinctive technology skills and appetite for travel together, it is fitting that McArthur’s first job will be at TripAdvisor.
McArthur found himself attuned to working with software and code in high school so it seemed instinctive that it was a field he wanted to explore after college.
Major: Computer science
Hometown: South Dartmouth, Mass.
High school: Dartmouth High School
“It was work I enjoyed and I knew that not everyone had those skills,” he said. “Since tech and coding were fun, I've been doing personal projects and teaching myself new technologies since high school.”
Last summer, a fellow Delta Kappa Epsilon (DKE) fraternity brother alerted him to an internship opportunity working for TripAdvisor, a company that aims to make travel and restaurant searches simpler.
As a coder, however, McArthur does work that is mostly invisible to the common user.
“TripAdvisor is a website and has all the pieces running behind the scenes, but being a global business means that tasks all need to be automated in order to scale effectively,” he said. “My work wasn't directly something you could see on the site, but rather a web app that other employees would use in their jobs for reporting and data monitoring.”
However, it was not until he studied abroad that McArthur could infuse his own meaning in the company. Studying abroad brought him the first opportunity to travel to Europe. In addition to traveling through Scandinavia with his family, McArthur visited a total of 10 countries during his semester.
“Getting to see the world and how other people live really teaches you about your own culture and empathy on a new level. I enjoyed working for TripAdvisor then because their goal is to make travel easier and more accessible,” he said.
With a newfound appreciation for the mission of the company and a job with more responsibility, McArthur feels well-prepared for this new step. More importantly, he is excited to combine his career with his love of travel.
“After spending some time at Trip I feel I'll have a better understanding of the real world,” he said. “Plus they have offices all over the world so having flexibility over where I live in the future is definitely important.”