Introducing Polar

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Kunal Gupta (UW ‘08 Software Engineering) founded Polar with classmates during his 4A term, this at a time before it was cool for students to start companies. While on campus, Kunal founded Velocity, ran the student entrepreneurship organization and barely attended class.

In addition to running Polar, he founded Year Zero Studios and is a meditation teacher. His beliefs in wellness, balance and positive mental health are reflected strongly in the Polar culture.

Polar Wins CEE Employer Impact Award

Thank you to the University of Waterloo for awarding Polar the 2020 Employer Impact Award for Impact on Student Experience! We hope to continue supporting co-op students towards their success and create meaningful work experiences that leave positive and lasting impacts.

Our Business

Polar provides creative advertising software to media publishers, platforms and agencies. Our business has over 250 clients in 30 countries, including the likes of IPG, GroupM, News Corp, The Telegraph, NBC and more. The company was founded in 2008 as Polar Mobile, and has had several successful chapters over the past decade.

 

Our Social Display and Video product makes it easy for advertisers to repurpose their social ads from Facebook and Instagram to run them on websites as paid ads. Over 10,000 advertisers have run over 10 billion ads using our technology in the past year. Polar provides creative technology used by ad agencies and publishers to easily build high-impact digital ads.

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Our CO-OP Opportunity

Over the past decade, Polar has hired over 300 co-op students and many have gone on to start companies. We pride ourselves on creating an amazing environment for our students, as we are all Waterloo co-op students ourselves and understand what it’s like.

Students are given a mentor throughout the term to work side-by-side (over Slack and Zoom of course) and learn from. We believe in providing regular and structured feedback to students and ask for it often as well.

For our Engineering roles, here are the skills that you will learn:
  • Best practices of software development

  • Joint code ownership and peer code review

  • Continuous integration and lean/agile practices

Engineering Responsibilities:
  • Working on production software that ships multiple times per week.

  • Writing high-quality software with unit tests across multiple codebases and languages.

  • Independently design and architect features with top performance in mind.

Tech stack
  • JavaScript, jQuery, React, Grunt, CSS, Bootstrap, Semantic UI, Handlebars, Babel, ESLint, webpack, jsdom, Sinon, Mocha, Chai, Jest

  • Chrome DevTools, Lighthouse, PageSpeed

  • Python (2 and 3), Django, greenlet, Tornado, pyspark, pandas

  • MySQL, Redis, Mongo

  • Selenium, Puppeteer

  • GitHub, JIRA, Jenkins, Chef, Vagrant, VMWare, VirtualBox, Docker

  • AWS & GCP

Our CO-OP Roles

Software Development

  • The satisfaction you get from getting your code to work is worth the sweat and tears

  • Growing as a developer is a top priority in your life 

  • You may have pulled an all nighter (or several) working on that coding assignment or some LeetCode problem

Sales & Marketing

  • You are a born creative who loves to express yourself through your work

  • You are proud of how many Instagram followers and likes you have

  • You are a strong communicator, regardless if it’s an email, a phone call or a tweet

Product & Project Management

  • You have a solutions-first mentality and strong customer empathy

  • You enjoy solving problems, doing research, and testing solutions

  • You are interested in bridging the gap between business, technical, and design teams

Analysis & Research

  • Genuinely curious to learn, open-minded and resourceful

  • Analytical in your approach to most things in life

  • You likely know your way around a spreadsheet

Omar Pusey

“Being a co-op student at Polar is a very enriching experience. The utilization of DayOne modules and Someday has allowed me to develop my skills each week. I was able to seek guidance from my mentors within Polar and able to connect with external resources regarding design each week. Polar’s Co-op circles also provided the opportunity to connect with other co-op students within Polar and share our thoughts with each other.  Polar's CEO Kunal essentially created a workspace that boosts productivity.  

Polar is a great organization to work for because there are opportunities to work on tasks in several departments and make significant contributions at the same time. I currently work on Video editing and design in the Marketing GTM team, where I am given the opportunity to work on significant projects every week. I created video mockups in Adobe Premiere Pro using tools such as After Effects and Illustrator to enhance the design. I would liaise with the marketing team to create proposals and mockups based on market research. Every week a task where I could test my creative ability and develop my skills.

 

My experience at Polar significantly enhanced my design skills, where I am now able to use programs like Adobe illustrator more effectively through office hours and during Someday.”

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Fourth Year | University of Waterloo

Recreation and Sports Business and Communications

CO-OP Testimonials

Jumanah Ahmed

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Economics and Business

Yifan Yang 

“Before the hiring process, Kunal, the CEO of Polar, made a call with the candidates and went through the company's goals, objectives and culture. The first thing that caught my attention was when he mentioned that "it takes a lot of effort to make something so simple". Polar is willing to take the extra step to make their products easy and accessible to their clients, and this resonated with my personal values. My expectations were high, and Polar managed to top them by the end of the term.

 I worked for Polar on two separate occasions. I was first hired as a front-end developer intern, and later returned as a full-stack intern. I had the opportunity to implement unit tests, perform bug fixes, design and prototype features for both back-end (database and API) and front-end (Mediavoice webpage and social creative formats) projects. I mangled with techs such as React, Django, Sequel Pro and Charles.

 

 Apart from the engineering side of Polar, the company's work environment was very inviting. I was assigned a mentor that taught me things from coding practices to new techs at my own pace. The engineering team was also really receptive and everyone was willing to take time to go through ticket details with me.”

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Computer Science

Kenny Miu

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Nanotech Engineering

Aman Shah

“My time at Polar was valuable for my professional and personal development.

I valued Polar’s support for its co-ops students. The opportunity to seek guidance from my mentor was an indispensable factor that streamlined my success in the role of a Software Developer in Testing (QA). Furthermore, Kunal’s weekly workshops allowed me to learn about the importance of mental health, meditation, and public speaking.

In my role, I spent my time performing automated and manual testing. I wrote automated tests in Python by using the Selenium Package to test features of Polar’s production website, which is primarily written in Django and React. Between interacting with the Django database, updating code to reflect new changes on Polar’s servers and testing models, with every ticket I felt as if I was learning something new!

This experience allowed me to polish my skills in Python, Selenium and Django. I also gained more experience with Git, and exposure to Agile Development through JIRA. Finally, I was able to improve upon my backend and front skills through bi-weekly code walkthroughs.”

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First Year | University of Waterloo

Computer Engineering

Suyash Unnithan

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Systems Design Engineering

Emily Loung

“I believe that Polar is unique because of the Flow-day and Someday experiments. Flow-day has allowed me to improve my productivity skills. Someday, resulted in a four-day work week, which has allowed me to establish better balance during the week.

I really valued the co-op workshops provided by Polar’s CEO, as I was able to improve upon my soft skills, such as writing emails, team leadership, and time management.

As a Front-end Developer Intern, I was mainly working on Polar’s MediaVoice webpage, which is the site that clients interact with to create and place their ad orders. This role allowed me to learn React, Django, Browser/React Developer Tools, Sequel Pro, unit testing and debugging. Of course, with everything I learned, I had guidance and support from the Polar team. Everyone was kind and willing to help with any challenges I faced. I was also able to seek guidance and grow as a developer with my mentor, who played a significant role in my growth as a front-end developer.”

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Third Year | University of Waterloo

Computer Engineering

Jenny Guan

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Fourth Year | University of Waterloo

Computational Mathematics

Botao Wei

“Working at Polar has been a super unique experience. Everyone on the team, from developers to product management to the overall leadership of the company was always super helpful and willing to spend time to engage and talk to us. I felt like I was part of the team and my voice was always heard.

I was hired as a front-end developer intern. During my term, I was given the opportunity to design new features, write unit tests and fix bugs on Polar’s ad tech software, MediaVoice, using React. I also did some back-end work, as well as working with our database models using Django.

I also had plenty of time for work on my personal growth due to the someday/flow-day experiments which were super insightful and really helped me maximize my efficiency.

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Computer Science

Kevin Ou

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Second Year | University of Waterloo

Computer Science