School: Wentworth Institute of Technology
Major: Civil Engineering
Company: BOND Brothers Inc.
Internship from May 2, 2016 — August 26, 2016
As one of three children to immigrant parents, I know how difficult the financial burden is on them to afford college for myself and my two siblings. I work as hard as I can to strive for a better future and help lessen the burden. Being the middle child, I am not the first to go to college and I will not be the last so it is important I help my parents financially by working part-time at BOND as I complete my degree, as well as getting scholarships.
I am currently pursuing a degree in Civil Engineering, with a minor in applied mathematics at Wentworth Institute of Technology. Over the past year, I have been working as an intern for BOND Brothers, Inc. I chose to do an internship in construction because I wanted to see how everything I learned in the classroom will be applied in the real world. It was also important for me to do an internship in construction because I wanted to see if this career path was the right one for me. Doing this internship has taught me a lot and I have seen this industry in a new perspective.
Hopefully, by the time I graduate, I will decide which part of the construction industry to be involved with. Whether it is pre-construction design or engineering, the construction industry is continues to be a fascinating business.
What results did you achieve on the internship, and how did you exceed the company's expectations for your role?
When I was interning for BOND, I was assisting an estimator by helping with the bid process. I took part in sending bid invitations to subcontractors and also help procure necessary documents for the project. The software that the BOND was using to assist in the bid process was HeavyBid. After about a month, I began working on creating an automated way to help those that have little to no experience with the software. Through this internship, I learned the importance of being efficient which is why I was asked to help with this process. BOND had initially begun this automation and it was being created by those that have experience with the software. I believe that I have exceeded the company’s expectations because they brought in someone with little to no experience with HeavyBid to do something that would typically require years of training. Through this internship, I got to meet one of the HeavyBid trainers, Hugh McCulloch. He came to visit for 2 days to help with the automation process. In those two days we went over a lot, from burden tables to the importance of utilizing the codebooks and the resources available to us through this system. I believe that this internship has helped not only me, but also the company learn a lot about HeavyBid. The internship that I applied for was to assist in estimating but it turned out to be a lot more than that and I feel that in doing this, the company trusted me and believed in what I could actually do. In turn, their trust in me makes me believe that I exceeded the company’s expectations.
What did you learn in this internship that will affect your life in a positive way?
In this internship, I learned many valuable aspects in the construction industry that will impact my life. Through this internship, I learned the importance of teamwork. If estimators did not work together, the quality and quantity of bids that are produced will decline. Teamwork is important but it also brings up the fact that each member of the team must be responsible for what must be done. I learned that in this world, responsibility and accountability are very important because it allows us to function efficiently. I have also learned that it is important to know when to ask questions and also ask for help. A great example of this that I have seen in my internship would be when I was working on the automation process. I had limited experience with the software and its hidden functions so I knew I needed help. Some of the people in the company did not know how to do it either so that’s when they had to ask someone that knew the ins and outs of the software. They would ask Hugh McCulloch for help and he came for a two day visit. He cleared everything up and even showed us some nifty shortcuts. Through this internship, I was able to learn a lot of things that will change my mindset in a positive way.
How were you involved with safety and/or quality during your internship, and how did that change your perspective on construction?
As an intern for an estimator, I had minimal experience in the field but there was always an emphasis on safety and quality. As an estimator, there is always safety factors that must be considered when bidding a project. An example would be if we were looking at a project within a live substation. Since there is electricity, it is important to wear proper equipment, PPE. Also, when you are digging in a substation, it important to decrease the units per shift due to the fact that there are sometimes unknown obstructions that could be dangerous to people. Working at BOND, there is a strong emphasis on quality. BOND is known for its quality in work and it is reflected on the how they bid projects. Through this internship, I have learned the importance of safety in construction. We all want to be quick and efficient when we do a project but it is important that we comply with OSHA rules or else it makes working dangerous and adds risk to not only the builders but also the company. Also, from this internship, I learned that sometimes quality does not matter to owners, all that matters is the cost of the building process. In construction, the ones that will build something at the lowest price will typically be the ones that will be able to provide jobs to its employees. I believe that there is a middle ground to this and that you can have quality at a moderate price. This internship has taught me a lot about the construction field with respect to quality and safety.
After reviewing www.IBuildAmerica.com, tell us what I Build America means to you?
I believe that I Build America represents those that work hard in the construction industry but they get little recognition for what has been done. It is a way to support the hardworking people that struggle and strive in the construction industry. It is also a means of expanding the horizon to those that know little about the dangers of construction and the conditions that must be endured by the construction workers to help create a safe world for others to live in. I Build America recognizes the construction workers of America and it shows that we are bonded to each other like a family. As a construction worker, it is our duty to help each other out to complete a project. We should take pride in what we do and what we make. I Build America symbolizes the construction workers that worked on projects that get little to no recognition. It gives a voice to those that are unheard. I believe that the infrastructure reflects on America as a whole, so it is important for us to take pride in our work in construction and to strive for greatness. I Build America not only symbolizes and recognizes construction workers, it also symbolizes America. This is why it is important for the construction industry to grow and make America even greater than it is today.