This pleasant surprise was waiting for me in my inbox when I came back from class earlier tonight:
Tyler: Your first interview went well! We will now begin the process of matching your experience and preferences with groups within Google who are looking for interns this summer. Once we find a match, we'll set up your second phone interview.
I’m looking forward to it. Now that I’ve gotten past the initial screening, I feel like I can relax a little bit. Hopefully the second interview will be less of a quiz and more of a way for my potential coworkers to determine if I would be a good fit on their project.
The first interview went really well. I got asked about my previous internships, then I was grilled on data structures and Big-O analysis. The culminating task was solving a design problem based on the one of the data structures we had just discussed in detail. My first solution was inefficient, but after a bit of prodding I had a stroke of genius and came up with one of the two optimal solutions.
My advice to anyone who has a phone interview with Google is to know your data structures. Know them well. If it has been a while since you took a data structures class, review them. I was really lucky that the stuff I reviewed was exactly what I was asked about. The questions aren’t simple, but having a good core understanding of data structures and other computer science fundamentals will help immensely.
And now I will cross my fingers while I wait for next week to arrive!