School: University of the Pacific
Major: Computer Engineering
Company: Independent Construction
Internship from June 5, 2016 — August 19, 2016
My passion for tech and electronics persuaded me to pursue my degree in Computer Engineering. After taking my freshman classes at University of the Pacific, my fathers’ boss asked me to build his company a new server for the HCSS HeavyBid program so it can run faster and more efficiently than it currently was. This was something I really enjoyed as well as fixing some of the Trimble GPS equipment and other various IT support tasks for that summer. With leaving my boss pleased, I am currently working the same job but now after my Junior year with a bit more privileges. These privileges are buying electronics equipment for the company and doing electrical/computer maintenance around the office and in the field.
What results did you achieve on the internship, and how did you exceed the company's expectations for your role?
I was able to build a server PC that performed the tasks’ asked so well that my boss rehired me for another summer to build a second server to be the big brother of the existing one for another office. I am currently waiting on parts but I am sure that I left an impression on my coworkers because I am constantly asked, “hows the new computer going?”, “whats going inside this one?”, along with a few commission offerings to make personal computers for perspective clients. At this point it might seem hard to see that this is a position at a construction company and this is because the department I am classified under doesn’t have this role. The main purpose of my job is to fix GPS and Laser equipment that breaks, however there is another that specializes at fixing the equipment and the owner specifically asks me to do what I currently am working on. I love working on the projects I am tasked with because when the projects/tasks are completed, the feedback is humbling.
What did you learn in this internship that will affect your life in a positive way?
My main takeaways may not be as important to most as they are to me. The takeaways I have are how to work efficiently with difficult people utilizing good communication. I found that putting my personal opinions aside helps in the challenges of working with multiple personalities and characters to complete an end goal. This is my main takeaway because it is something that can’t really be taught in a class but more in experience. Other things I learned include the role of a dispatcher, which was a position I covered for a few weeks, the role of job/bid estimator under the head estimator, and working with Agtek in our takeoff department.
How were you involved with safety and/or quality during your internship, and how did that change your perspective on construction?
When working in dispatch and before conducting work on job sites, there was an amount of safety training and certifications I needed to pass. For example, I had to learn how to drug screen and obtain that certification and before working out on a job site, I had to take a course in safety. This course was about what to wear, avoid getting pinched by equipment in tight spaces, along with general safety. On a smaller note, I worked with electrical where safety was a major concern comprised of a lot of do’s and don’ts.
After reviewing www.IBuildAmerica.com, tell us what I Build America means to you?
This may sound somewhat of a political speech but to me it means jobs and industrial evolution. From the website, the construction that was mainly shown was civil construction for patron use. This type of construction provides the people with means of transportation, a modernized way of life, and a better quality of living. It shows Americans’ coming together to reach a common goal through engineering and safety.