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Hyver Stories: Software Engineer Diana

August 21, 2020 | By Diana Baiceanu

Meet software engineer Diana Baiceanu (31).

Her work for The Hyve’s Cancer Genomics team allows her to combine her passion for software development with her interest in life sciences. When you want to talk to her about non-IT-related stuff, strike up a conversation on art, painting or travelling. 

 

 

 

 

 

Can you tell me a bit about your background?

In 2011, I graduated in Computer Science and Engineering at the Polytechnic University of Bucharest, Romania. I’ve been involved with software development ever since. Over the years, I’ve worked mostly as a software engineer for big corporations like IBM and Lenovo. I gained experience with various technologies and programming languages. For a few years, I combined my engineering work with project and people management. This experience helped me to better understand the importance of teamwork and I gained some soft skills, beside the technical skills I already had.

 

How did you get to know The Hyve?

Last year, in 2019, me and my husband made the decision to move to The Netherlands. We thought it best if he started a job and moved here first, so he could take care of logistics: finding an apartment and a kindergarten for our boy before I moved there with him.
After my husband moved to the Netherlands I started to actively search for a job, mainly online. I discovered a vacancy for full-stack software engineer at The Hyve via a Google search for IT jobs in Utrecht. What attracted me was that it didn’t seem like an ordinary software engineering job because of their projects in biomedical informatics. This appealed to me because I’ve always had an interest in life sciences and medicine. Actually, when I made the decision which university studies I wanted to do, it was a choice between medicine and computer science. I was very happy to have found a job combining these fields. So I sent an email with my letter of intent and my resume, went through the interviews, and was successful.

 

 

When did you join The Hyve?

I started halfway through October 2019. I moved to Utrecht in September, because I wanted to have a few weeks to adapt. My son was starting kindergarten and he had never been to kindergarten before. But everything went fine.  

 

What do you do at The Hyve?

I’m part of the Cancer Genomic team, working on cBioPortal. As a full-stack engineer my main task is programming. I help new customers with the deployment of cBioPortal or develop features for new and existing customers. Since it is an open-source product, I’m also actively involved with the cBioPortal community.

 

What do you like about working at The Hyve?

Like I said before, I like the combination of software engineering and biomedical sciences. I also like the environment, the people, working in a small team of bright and motivated colleagues.   

 

Can you mention an exciting development in your field?

In software engineering, there are always new developments. It has changed a lot since I finished university and will continue to change, with new technologies appearing, new features, new libraries and so on.

What I’m most excited about, is that machine learning is starting to be used in the cancer genomics field to reach better conclusions, to identify gene biomarkers and to detect treatment targets. I’ve read a number of articles about this and I think this is the most exciting development in my field and it will only get better and better in the future.   

 

What do you like to do when you're 'off-duty'?

In the past, I loved oil painting and everything related to it such as joining painting workshops, reading art history books or visiting art museums. I’m especially interested in the Renaissance period. Besides this, I also like to read books and travel.

However, now with a small boy - he’s three years old - and another boy on the way, my main activities are playing games, solving puzzles, reading children’s stories, that sort of thing, which I also enjoy a lot.