My name is Ivan Gomes. I am a young professional living in Charlotte, North Carolina, working for Synechron. This website serves as a place to present myself and my work to the world. Here you can find my résumé, some work samples, and a little biography, too.
Feel free to contact me by the means linked in the footer: Facebook, LinkedIn, or email. I'd love to hear from you.
Ivan Gomes is a person I deeply respect despite his tendencies to be a little self-deprecating and refer to himself in the third person. He calls it "being self-aware," but I just write it off as harmless quirkiness. He strives to be good, honorable, idealistic, altruistic, and generally perfect, though those things are all difficult and some of them are downright impossible. If I had to describe Ivan in a single sentence, it would be "Ivan is a generally good person with many talents; nevertheless, he tries to selflessly give to others while still pursuing his own happiness; he's also rather handsome."
The full version
I was born in Goiânia, Brazil on the 2nd of September, 1988. A year prior, my birthplace had been one of the world's worst nuclear disasters. I blame any of my manufacturing errors on this.
I was raised by my mother and grandmother, and about 95% of my childhood was composed of Legos. I'm sure that my tendencies toward technical and complex things has its root in all those years I spent with my Legos. It was a happy childhood, but I would later learn that the world does not, in fact, revolve around me.
After some years of saving up money, mother and I moved to the United States, and to Beulaville, NC of all places. This little town is now my home, even though I never fit into either the Southern American or Redneck cultures.
Shortly after moving here, North Carolina was struck by Floyd (it caused the third largest evacuation in US history). Young me thought that massive flooding was a regular part of American life.
I attended the local public schools Beulaville Elementary and East Duplin High School. In a sentence, they were not challenging and ill prepared me for future study. On the plus side, I graduated as valedictorian and had plenty of time to devote to other things.
After graduation I packed up and moved to Texas, where I spent a year at the Honor Academy, a one year Christian internship that, among other things, organizes worldwide mission trips and nationwide weekend retreats. I got lots of experience working with data and information systems, and I had the privilege to know and work under an excellent boss, coach, and friend, David Neal. Personal development was also a big part of the curriculum. At the Honor Academy I became more socially adept and learned a great deal about living independently. I also learned to take the good and leave the bad when you're stuck in a non-ideal situation, a most excellent life lesson.
I got some degrees at UNC-Chapel Hill in Information Science and Chinese, thought I started my education in Mathematics. I made the switch to InfoSci because I wanted something a bit more practical, and I picked up Chinese because I thought that a different language could help me think about problems differently because the limitations of language define the concepts you can and cannot think about. I felt so proud of myself when I realized that I had independently theorized linguistic determinism. Pretty much all of my social activity was with Asian Americans, so I got to simulateously learn all about a new subculture and avoid the typical college exprience that's portrayed in the media. I left UNC with some marginally useful degrees into an uncertain economic situation, but debt-free and full of useful life experiences. Not bad for some immigrant Brazilian kid.
I managed to win a fellowship for a 6-month study abroad experience in China during my third year. I spent four months doing nothing but speaking and learning Chinese every day in Beijing, followed by two months working for a server management startup in Shanghai. The experience was phenomenal and shaped me in many ways. I loved learning the language, and it was good to learn to fend for myself in a new and alien place with limited communication. Living in the massive metropolis of Beijing, I first saw the world in a new light and discovered an urgency to learn about agriculture.
The corresponding natural disaster is Typhoon Muifa, which threatened to keep me from flying back to the US.
After getting burned out from all my traveling, studying, and social adventures, I decided to take a nice, long break. The nicest, highest paying job could have fallen into my lap and failed to lure me out of my sabbatical. I had forgotten what was important to me and lost my ability to think clearly. I am so grateful to parents who let me bum around the house for so long without even looking for a job. I was able to recharge my internal batteries, refocus on my life goals, and even brush up on several tech skills. I also got to reconnect with the friends I had left 5 years prior, improve my health, and receive my American citizenship.
Accepted a position as Junior Associate with Synechron in Charlotte, NC. A buddy of mine introduced me and took my resume. One week later I got an offer. Talk about a windfall! I am currently undergoing training, most of which is taking place in Pune, India. Very excited to see what will come of this!
2 Sep. 1988
Born in Brazil
Childhood with mom, grandma, and Legos
Moved to US with mother
Attended public schools in Duplin county, NC
High school valedictorian
Took a year off to work for free at the Honor Academy in Texas
Attended UNC, degrees in InfoSci and Chinese
6-month study abroad in Bejing and Shanghai
6-month personal health sabbatical
Started work with Synechron at Charlotte, NC
3-month training in India
There are a whole two news sites out there that mention me.
The things that fascinate me generally fall into the broad areas of technology, language, organization, and self-improvement.
- Technology: As an Information Science major, I have committed a significant portion of my life to learning and using technology. I love large, complex things that take a lot of effort to understand. Seeing the "big picture" and solving intricate problems really suit my personality and skills. I also have interests in database topics and usability design.
- Language: Language is a neverending source of enjoyment and frustration to me. Successfully communicating in a new language is intensely satisfying, but miscommunications are as discouraging as they are common. The thing that draws me to language-learning the most is learning a different way of thinking from the one imposed by your primary language. Portuguese was my mother tongue until age 10, when English became my primary language. I continue to pursue Mandarin Chinese fluency (Chinese was my second major in college). I chronicled some of my study abroad language adventures in China and am now learning a speck of Hindi as I spend a few months in Pune, India. I plan to continue learning languages throughout my life, as it is both useful and fun.
- Organization: I have always been, by nature, very organized and emphasize neatness in my work and personal life. I'm the kind of guy who collects receipts from every purchase, digitizes and archives all documents, makes large hierarchies of folders to organize electronic documents, and makes multiple backups to keep my data safe. In college I was exposed to GTD and have been slowly adopting more and more components into my daily routine.
- Self-improvement: I have this crazy idea that one should always work toward bettering oneself. In other words, there is no point in time when you can say "there is nothing in my life which needs to improve." Perfection is not something which humans can attain, but I believe we must try anyway. There's always some knowledge to be gained, some virtue not yet mastered, some good to be done in this world. I am committed to this bit of idealism and will not cease to improve myself in some way.
I am currently employed at Synechron, a global company that develops technical solutions for our clients' business needs, typically banks and financial institutions, but also insurance, energy, and digital media organizations. I love working at Synechron; not only are my coworkers among the best in the business analysis and software development industries, but they are truly fine people to know and work alongside. Thanks to them, it's a pleasure to go to work every day. And in the end, it's the people that matter most to me.
Last updated 2013-09-26 and offered in several delectable formats.
What am I good for, you ask? Quite a few things, actually! I have some experience with:
- Databases, their design, and SQL
- Software programming: Java, Python, VBA, and a spot of MatLab and PL/SQL
- Workflow modeling
- MS Office and OpenOffice.Org, particularly Excel
- Documentation and user training/education
I have work experience in various settings, especially for a recent graduate. Practically, this means that I know how to manage my expectations of my employer, coworkers, and responsibilities, so I am better prepared to adapt to a new job than I would otherwise be. Or, flippantly, this means that you benefit from all the lessons I learned the hard way from my previous positions without any of the negative consequences.
I also have a variety of "soft skills," due mostly to life experiences and my diverse background. I've had great role models in my previous bosses; it's in great part due to their influence that I've adopted the relationship-focused philosophy to life and work. In my studies I learned that users, in all their variations, are the end-all and be-all of work, whether interface design, systems development, or customer relations. In my young adulthood I learned that a touch of humility goes a long way toward a smoothly operating team. From being Brazilian, immigrating to the United States, and living in both China and India I've discovered some of the essence of humanity and the value of life.
If I seem to be someone you'd like working for your organization, keep in touch! I'm not looking for new employment, but who can know what the future has in store for us?
Here is some of the work I've done previously. It's not very complete as of right now, but I hope to have some interesting programming and design samples up here in the near future.
- Mobile interface
- QR codes on business cards
- Server-side scripting with PHP
- Contact form to prevent spam
- Load time/order optimization
- Static nav bar
- Social web integration
Functional without scripts
Built for tracking the clients of a human services agency and client visits. All names and data is fabricated. More details inside.
Database using quite a bit of VBA to make usable interfaces for custom database operations. College project, never used. All names and data is fabricated. More details inside.
Designed to easily and reliably create a useful report from two very different and difficult-to-interpret data sources. My pride and joy in Excel. More details inside.
A coworker needed to compile a list of donors by very specific rules; this tool let him do it semi-automatically in five minutes rather than manually in two days. All names and data is fabricated. More details inside.
A document prescribing the use of a free tool to mass edit part of the filename of a few hundred files without changing the rest. More details inside.