School: Farmingdale State College
Major: Mechanical Engineering
Company: Network Infrastructure
Internship from May 17, 2016 — August 26, 2016
I am 20 years old and am going into my junior year of college. I attend Farmingdale State College on Long Island. I am majoring in Mechanical Engineering. Throughout high school, I was very interested in my technology classes and wanted to go into a technological field. At Farmingdale, I have done research with Dr. Jeff Hung on Vanadium Flow Batteries. I was in charge of creating the design for the battery and the system used. In doing this research, Dr. Hung noticed my ability in AutoCAD design and because of my search for an internship; he suggested one in the design field. He pointed me in the direction of Network Infrastructure. Network is a construction company that mainly with pipelines. They work with National Grid, Con Edison and Verizon. Dr. Hung had sent students to this company before and heard of their need for a draftsman, so he suggested me. I applied and got the internship and am currently doing drafting for Network. I really enjoyed this internship because it involved drafting with AutoCAD on the computer and being able to go out to the construction sites and being involved in measurement taking. This is the kind of work I wanted to do and am extremely grateful for the opportunity to see what it is all about.
What results did you achieve on the internship, and how did you exceed the company's expectations for your role?
In my internship, I was in the drafting department. I had to log all the fuses that were made on the entire pipe put into the ground. Using AutoCAD civil 3D, I used lines and points to locate where each point was based off a drawing made by the foreman at each job. Then, using a custom process that Network created with the help of Autodesk, the geological latitude and longitude could be determined for each point. This process is slightly complicated but, after only a few attempts I got the process down. This impressed members of the company, to which they had me do more work in the drafting department. The next thing I did was to use AutoCAD Civil 3D to put piping down at their geological location. Using parts created in Inventor, pipes and fitting could be inserted into Civil 3D and used to view the piping from above. After the company saw my ability to quickly learn their processes, they asked me to also do printouts for their gas services. The individual who had previously done it was getting a back-log of work and needed assistance. A print out is a visual representation of a building and the piping around the house that the workers use when putting new pipe to a house or servicing a pipe. The individual who asked me to help him stated that I learned the process and program used faster than anyone else.
What did you learn in this internship that will affect your life in a positive way?
In my internship, I learned many things. Many of the things I learned go beyond just training or work related aspects. I learned a lot that will carry on into everyday life. With all the people involved in the construction process, you get to see first hand how working together and communication between individuals can really increase productivity. If the communication between two people is poor, the project may be done wrong or stalled completely until there is good communication. With dealing with a large number of people on a daily basis, social skills are heightened and the ability to clearly communicate increases. In this internship, I also got to see what a real job environment is like. I got to see habits and problems that any company can face.
How were you involved with safety and/or quality during your internship, and how did that change your perspective on construction?
I was not involved in safety or quality, but I regularly talked to people that are involved. In hearing about what goes on during the safety side of a project, i appreciated how much work is put in to keep all the workers out of harms way. Anyone working at a job site has to go thru a series of safety classes and exams before they can even observe a site. If a hazardous condition erupts during work, everything stops until the site is cleared and is back to the safe working conditions.
After reviewing www.IBuildAmerica.com, tell us what I Build America means to you?
I Build America is an organization that supports construction companies across the country. To me, this means that they are supporting the hard work that goes into making lives easier and safer. Many people dont realize the amount of hard work that goes into making everyday life simple and safe. No one thinks twice about the road they are driving or the water that is coming out of there faucet. Without construction companies, these little everyday things that people take for granted wouldn’t exist. I Build America does notice these things and shows there appreciation by supporting the companies that make them. They understand the hard work and strenuous planning that goes into a construction job and help to bring awareness to this.