School: University of Hawaii Manoa
Major: Civil Engineering
Company: Nan Inc.
Internship from May 23, 2016 —
Hi I am Mark Anthony Molina, currently a Junior student of University of Hawaii Manoa and majoring in Bachelor of Civil Engineering. I was born and raised in the Philippines. I moved in Hawaii 5 years ago with my family. I have two high school diplomas; one from the Philippines and one from Hawaii, I was about to start my Civil Engineering course in the Philippines when we moved to Hawaii. Unfortunately, I needed to attend two more years of high school in Hawaii. However, I was offered a jumpstart during my senior year. As a result, I was able to take college courses at a community college. I chose to do an internship in construction because if I become an Engineer someday, construction is the one I want to do. Also, my dad is a construction labor worker. He knows a lot about carpentry as well as mason work. He is all around in construction and every time something breaks down in our house, he is the one fixing it and I am his helper. Everytime I help him with his construction works at home, I feel like I am enjoying what he is doing. So, I guess that’s what makes me like construction. Thus, I believe I got the passion from my dad because of his work, and I can say I enjoy helping and doing construction with him. I am taking civil engineering. Although, there are a lot of field I can get into, like environmental and design, I still chose construction, because I know construction is where my interest is and so I decided to do an internship for it.
What results did you achieve on the internship, and how did you exceed the company's expectations for your role?
When I first started my internship, I was not sure If I could handle the stress and works they’ll give to me. Since I did not have any idea on what project engineer does, I am so worried if I’ll do good in my job. However, with the help of the supervisions of my Sr. Project Engineer, Project Manager and QC, I learned and achieved a lot. On my first day on internship, my Sr. Engineer gave me a design plan and ask me to do a task on the signage that we need in our project. At first, I was like “how I’m going to do this?”. It was my first time seeing a construction plan, and I didn’t know how and what to do. I kept on staring at the plan, looking for details that I could use to do the task given to until I learned reading a plan, how to analyze it and how to see what is going on. Then after I got all the signage I need, the next thing he asked me was to get a price quote for the signage. I thought this one was simple, just email the manufacturers or vendors for their pricing and whoever was the lowest price then we’ll go to them. But once again my assumption was wrong, requesting for a product proposal was not that easy. Yes , I’m just asking for the price but we have specs that need to be followed so that the materials we are getting are the right ones. In a little while, I learned the right thing in requesting a product proposal, for example how to check the specs and how to deal with the bidding on which company should we give the award. And I learned it’s not always the cheapest that will get the award. Sometimes we need to pay more in order to get the quality and the good service for our jobsite. Then the other things I achieve in this internship is learning how to work with different subs, how to check their works and what needs to be done in our jobsite for us to be able to meet our deadlines. Since I’m an intern my Sr. Engineer thinks I should only given an easy job and won’t give me too much work to do but as time goes on, I exceed his expectation and learned fast from him. I do things I shouldn’t be doing and I finish my work if not on time ahead of time. Right now one of our engineer will get transferred so my Project manager asks me to step up and help in whatever works he will be behind.
What did you learn in this internship that will affect your life in a positive way?
I’ve learned that working in construction give us things we can use in our daily life. I’m lucky I’m working with one of the best guys in construction not only work but even in their life they’re a good people. They teach me things and motivate me in working and doing good in school. I see guys working so hard doing their work really hard so I got motivated to study well and have my bachelors degree so I won’t need to work that hard. And from our safety officer himself I learned that being safe in the job site starts from yourself and your common senses no matter what you doing if you’ll use your common sense accident won’t happen. And i learned that work is work no matter what we might have a bad days, stressful days, a conflict but at the end of the day we need to take a break and just do our job with the best we can do. Overall in my internship I learned a lot of things, work related, life and some other things. And I’m thankful to the guys who teach and guide me in who I’am now.
How were you involved with safety and/or quality during your internship, and how did that change your perspective on construction?
Our jobsite consist of at least 140 people in the jobsite not including the engineering staffs, and we only have two safeties that check and insure the jobsite to be safe and check the workers. So lacking of safety project engineers, and me myself help them to insure that our jobsite is safe. Check the workers if they’re wearing their safety glasses, hard hats, steel shoes, and their safety vest. It’s a little thing I can do to make sure everyone is ok and not to mention we doesn’t have a lost work time because of accident since the job started. And one time one of our worker suffered a mini heart attack; our jobsite doesn’t have a address that time so when we called 911 ambulance, police and firemen can’t locate us. But thru cooperation of our team we make it easy for them and we went to a one location they know and guide them going to our job site. And in that said emergency rescuer gets in our jobsite in less than 5 minutes and we know every second count and any delay time can cause worse. And my involvement of quality is a must. I’m a project engineer I order the materials, in that time in ordering the materials I follow some guidelines and check that the quality of our materials is what specified in our specs and I don’t only order material because its cheap I order base on what is made, where its made and if meets the requirement we’re looking. And in work quality there are only two guys doing the job one quality control and his assistant there is no way they can check the jobsite work thoroughly so me as an intern help them check the work walk thru the buildings check the work if its done right. And sometimes we should double check the work because looking good means it correct, for example in electrical department all of their pipes and conduits looks good but when we check it the pipe and conduits are loose and missing some brackets to secure it so for me to help in every floors I checked their work and one by one I check the conduits if its tight and not missing anything. So it changed my perspective that if we want to have a good outcome good is not enough we need to do our best and check thoroughly so that the customers will be satisfied in the work we did. And in my safety perspective, it stuck in my mind that “Safety is always first” , no matter what work is work but our safety comes first in any thing that might occur.
After reviewing www.IBuildAmerica.com, tell us what I Build America means to you?
I build America means to me, well it means a lot. Everything that they do in our land/country give us convenience in our daily life. For example roads that they built, we can access places easier thru the nice roads. Another example the houses we staying right now if construction didn’t do it we won’t have a safe shelter we staying every night. Construction workers build us a lot of things that are helpful in our life, mostly everything is helpful. They work so hard for the people to use it. And I can say this in every building that they made their sweat and blood is there foundation. Nobody can make a building stand without the hard work of men and women of construction. So I salute all the men and women of construction, I respect them in their work and honored to work with them in our project. And hopefully after I graduate i’ll work harder with them and give them an assistant that would be helpful for them .