My Path to Google: Maegan Clawges, User Experience (UX) Engineer

Welcome to the seventh installment of our blog series “My Path to Google”. These are real stories from Googlers highlighting how they got to Google, what their roles are like, and even some tips on how to prepare for interviews.

Today’s post is all about Maegan Clawges. Read on!
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Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I grew up in Asheville, North Carolina, in the Appalachian mountains. I was exposed to a lot of local art there which inspired me to study design in college. Once in college, I realized that being able to code would increase the impact of my design work so I added a second degree in computer science.

What’s your role at Google?
I’m a UX Engineer at YouTube in the art department. We are an interdisciplinary team that works on brand and design language for all YouTube products. As a UX Engineer I work on tools for the design team, in addition to writing full-stack production code to build infrastructure for our design goals.

What inspires you to come in every day?
I am inspired every day by the people on my team — they have a wide array of skills and experience that I learn from. Working with them pushes me to do my best creative work.

Can you tell us about your decision to enter the process?
I was drawn to Google because of its dedication to innovation and helping the world. The Google Doodles inspired me creatively and influenced me to start learning to code.

How did the recruitment process go for you?
I first joined Google as a software engineering intern. During college I got to know my university's Google recruiter through an event I organized for women in tech. She was super supportive throughout my internship and full-time application process. I applied to four different roles at Google because I wasn't sure where I fit as a hybrid engineer and designer, and I was impressed by how they managed my parallel application paths and how they offered me advice along the way.

What do you wish you’d known when you started the process?
I wish I had learned more in school about how to collaborate within a large company. Even at YouTube, which is smaller, I work with designers and engineers throughout the company and it’s awesome, but communicating at that scale is a skill in itself.

Can you tell us more about the resources you used to prep?
For the technical interviews, I mainly focused on practicing algorithm-based questions. I remember spending an entire weekend in front of a whiteboard before my intern interview. I also read as much as I could about Google, since I decided early on that it was the company I wanted to work for. Having that background information helped me integrate when I joined and ask better questions.

To finish, do you have any tips you’d like to share with aspiring Googlers?

First, focus on developing skills in the areas that interest you, even if they’re interdisciplinary. Then, figure out how that skill set fits into Google's products and goals. A good mentor can help with that. Finally, get really good at telling your story, about your skill set and where you want to be in the future.