Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Spotlight on Summer Interns 2012

UR Students Gaining Real World Experience

   According to the 2011 NACE Internship and Co-op Survey, in 2010 39 percent of employer's entry-level hires came from their own internship programs, 67 percent of interns were offered a full-time position with their employer, and 87 percent of interns accepted a full-time job offer.
   Our own 2012 senior survey showed 92 percent of UR students completed at least one internship as an undergrad and credit their internship experience as the most important factor in identifying and achieving their career goals.
   What are UR students up to this summer? How did they find their internships? What do they do on a daily basis?  Read about their experiences in this weekly series.

Emily Kopp, '14, Exploring the Recording Industry at Nonesuch Records

Megan DeWitt, '12, "You never know when someone will be able to help."




In his own words: Willie Roberson, '14, Political Science, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights Intern


A Day In the Life of a Blackdog Studios Intern, Kedar Shashidhar, '15, AME

by Kedar Shashidhar

I am currently a rising sophomore at UR majoring in the new Audio and Music Engineering program. This summer I am working at a recording studio in downtown Rochester called, “Blackdog Studios.” 

I knew going into my freshman year at UR, I wanted to be doing something productive and related to my field of study and interest over the summer. So I began networking and researching in order to secure an internship. 

I even went as far as to meet and network with companies in Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show in January. However, nobody was really interested in taking in an under qualified freshman in college.  In fact, I was challenged with so many initial failures, I was ready to settle for anything by the time this opportunity came along. 

Jill Meacham, '13, Crash Course in Automotive Heating and Cooling Systems at Delphi

Jill Meacham, ’13, is receiving a crash course in automotive heating and cooling systems in her first three weeks as a summer intern in the Advanced Systems Department at Delphi in Lockport.

“Delphi is extremely specialized and it takes time to learn how all of the components work and fit together,” Meacham says. “I did not walk into the internship with much knowledge on heating and cooling systems, especially specific to cars.

“However, everyone has been extremely helpful. I would say the most fun is getting to do a lot of very hands-on testing and assembly of different portions of the projects,” she says.

Meacham, a mechanical engineering major, says she wishes she had more hands-on experience in engineering before starting her internship, in addition to the theory-based classes she has taken.

“Although, I am very glad that I just finished taking Heat Transfer, Fluids & Thermal Lab, and the Basic Mechanical Fabrication class,” Meacham says. “These three classes definitely prepared me for this internship the most.”

Meacham says her first day was intimidating, and involved a lot of paperwork, a tour of the facility, and an orientation with another new intern. She is working on three main projects at Delphi: testing and implementation of a new evaporator used to keep the cabin of start-stop vehicles cooler longer, running some of the testing on a component of the A/C system in a project sponsored by the Department of Energy and learning a new software which she will use to perform Finite Element Analysis on various projects.

“The really cool thing about this internship is that I am getting to help in all aspects of the design process from the analytic side to hands-on testing and building of prototypes. Some of the internship is also left up to me to find out what interests me the most and get involved with those projects. It's great having the chance to explore different aspects of what Delphi is working on.”

Meacham says she used a UR alumni connection to land her internship, after spending several months responding to online postings with no success.

“I got a list of UR alumni working as engineers in the Buffalo area on LinkedIn through the career center and sent an email to each of them asking about internships along with sending my resume. I did this in mid-May and heard back surprisingly quickly from Delphi. Within a couple days I had a 30-minute phone interview and received the internship offer the next day.

“It all worked out pretty quickly once I found a company that I had some connection with and liked my resume,” she says. “I'm very happy that I found this internship and I hope to learn some practical engineering skills that I can take with me. So far I am finding this internship far more interesting than I initially anticipated. It's been a really cool experience so far.”

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Marissa Stanger, '14, Florida Department of Environmental Protection

A few weeks into her internship at the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Marissa Stanger, ’14, says she has learned a lot about the state agency and is hard at work on the independent project she will present to the district office at the end of the summer.

“I have gotten a great overview through field visits to landfills and recycling plants,” says Stanger, an environmental science major. “We’ve visited contamination sites and learned what it takes to clean up a contamination site.”

Her personal project involves the “Florida Green Lodging Program,” a voluntary initiative of the DEP that designates and recognizes lodging facilities that make a commitment to conserve and protect Florida’s natural resources.

“I am following up with big name hotels to get an idea of the amount of energy and money they have saved in the program,” she says. “I am learning a lot about sustainability and the green effort.”

Stanger is living at home and working Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the Southeast Florida District Office in the Air, Water and Waste Management Department.  She is receiving Reach Funding through the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center.

She and two other interns spend at least one day per week in the office and the rest in the field. Dress is business casual. The first day on the job they toured the building with the intern coordinator who introduced them to all of the department heads.

“Everyone has been so nice," Stanger says. “This is a great experience.” It has opened her mind to new career possibilities she says, “I never thought I’d be interested in a state job, I thought I would go to a non-profit. But everyone here is so passionate about what they do.”

She has worked with Career Center Counselor Cathy Tempest on interviewing techniques and cover letters. She targeted the DEP for her summer internship search, and found contact information for the internship coordinator on the website last fall. She sent a networking note, and eventually set up a successful interview over spring break.

Stanger will visit the career center this fall to begin her search for the next internship opportunity. She says she would like to experience something in the non-profit sector next summer, possibly in New York City.