Monthly Archives: January 2019

Exposure to Engineering

Exposure to Engineering

By: Mark J. Buchenic

Vice President - PRIME AE Group, Inc. 

 

The Akron Student Engineering Program proved to be an effective way to expose high school students to field of engineering prior to college.  PRIME AE worked with the student John Vang.  John was exposed to various tasks and experiences in water/wastewater branch of civil engineering.  John learned about how sewer collection systems are assessed for rehabilitation by reviewing pipeline interior inspection videos and conducting field observations of sewer manholes.  I believe John was given a glimpse into the world of civil engineering where he can further his interest in the field.  Unfortunately, we do not have good pictures.

Better Equipped for My Future

Better Equipped for My Future

By Jose Miller Heisler

When my engineering teacher Coach Griffith first introduced me to this program and told me what this program is about, I thought that it would be the perfect thing for me. It paired me up with Welty Construction Co. based off my interests with construction and engineering, which ended up being what I think was a perfect fit. When I first walked into their office I was scared and anxious that they would look down on me or just give me busy work because I was just some kid walking into their office, but boy was I wrong. They were probably one of the kindest and most welcoming people that I have met. They made me feel at home and then handed me a very well put together packet that listed what I would do for my whole stay there.

My favorite part about this is that it wasn't set in stone, they made it flexible so that I would be able to do this what interested me more and remove things that didn't. They showed me every single department that they had and made sure to explain everything clearly and made sure that I understood it, taking time to let me ask questions and take notes. During my stay there, they taught me many things ranging from onsite safety to the need of diversity in the workplace.

They not only taught me about their workplace but also about life. Talking to the many people there helped me find out that mechanical engineering was the degree that I was looking for. Every day was a new and exciting experience there and overall, I loved the whole thing. I learned many things that I would otherwise would not have if I hadn't been a part of this program. With this experience I think that it has truly better equipped me for my future in the field of engineering as well as in life overall.

Networking and Patience is Key

Networking and Patience is Key

By Kareemat Melaiye

Through this program, I got the opportunity to have a two-week internship at an environmental engineering company called Cosmos Technologies. The CEO of the company is Mr. Frederick Douglas and he took time out of his busy schedule to teach me about what his company does and what my tasks were. I was a research intern and had to search for proposal and grant opportunities while also looking for potential business partners. I quickly realized that the difficult part wasn't reaching out to these contacts but hearing back from them. I had to call these contacts consistently and send them emails to try and get a response from them.

Even researching wasn't as simple as I thought it would be. For example, I was told to look for underground deep well injection sites and get their contact information, however, it was difficult to find the location of the injection sites and I had to contact the EPA for a list of the sites. It took up until the last day of my internship to get those lists.

Regardless, I had a nice experience and learned tips from Mr. Douglas on running a business. I learned that networking and patience is very important when running a company because the result may not come as quick as you think it would be. This program also helped me show others who I am and what I am capable of, rather than them assuming my skills and personality based on my appearance. Hopefully in the future, employers will be open to hiring more minorities into their companies. I really had a good experience with this program and would like to participate in it again.

Show me the ropes

Show me the ropes

By Gwendalyn Jenkins

During my time at CTI Engineers I learned how to survey elevation of a certain area by taking a previous elevation and using a rod ruler and a leveled scope. Elevation surveying is simple. First, you must have an elevation to start off with, so we used manholes for this because all elevations are already mapped out. We took the rod and put it on the manhole and put the leveled scope far away enough that we can see the manhole and see the point we wanted to measure. Once we get the measurement, we write it down before moving on. After, we put the measuring rod on the spot we want to measure, then we use the scope to get the number of our new elevation, accounting for the height of the scope of course.

I also got to learn about waste treatment facilities and how they function to make our waste water clean. First in the pretreatment phase, the facility rakes out all the big materials in the water. Then, they go to primary treatment which uses gravity to allow the particles to go to the bottom of the tank, also using surface skimmers to get the grease and oil off the top. In secondary treatment, microorganisms are used to break down the organic material still in the water. Lastly, the facility treats the sludge, or organic materials that they took out of the water, which farmers can use for fertilizer for their plants.

Also, while at CTI Engineers, I learned a great deal about civil engineering. My company specialized in water treatment facilities, so I also learned a bunch about those too. I learned about the inner workings of redesigning a water treatment facility and about each individual role in that redesigning. I got to meet all the people in the Akron branch of CTI Engineers and what role they play in the company. I also attended a couple of meetings and learned more about how people reason through problems together.

Overall, this was a really great experience and I really learned a lot. There are a lot of things that I did not know anything about before doing this internship. I loved meeting all the people involved, and they were all really welcoming. Rick Reed and David Kohlmeier were both great at showing us the ropes and giving us interesting projects to participate in. Given the chance I would do it again.

Confirming My College Plans

Confirming My College Plans

By Kathryn Burns

The AASEP allowed me to have a wonderful engineering experience in a professional setting. I was able to have hands-on experience in the civil engineering field and helped confirm my college plans. I'm so grateful to have this opportunity to build relationships with individuals in the field of engineering, as well as members of the Akron community.

Just like the millions of other Americans that mindlessly waste water, I was so unaware of the effort and work that goes into providing cities with clean water. The field of civil engineering blends business and people skills with creativity, mathematics, and helping others. My internship allowed me to explore multiple facets of civil engineering: providing clean water, wastewater treatment, finding ways to preserve the environment while creating infrastructure, and working with governments to make the designs a reality. I have gained so much knowledge and awareness about the efforts being made to improve the city of Akron and our larger community. The program has given me the confidence to pursue a career in civil engineering and strive to create a better society. I'm thankful to have made some amazing friends with similar interests to support my endeavors.

The AASEP is a wonderful addition to the opportunities that Akron provides for students that helps take learning and personal growth outside of the classroom.

Designers, Architects, Suits and Ties

Designers, Architects, Suits and Ties 

By Angel Catala

My internship was an interesting experience. My time at AECOM helped me understand what it really meant to be a civil engineer working for a big corporation. I shadowed Louis Burnoski, a civil engineer that worked on designing and managements of projects. He showed me the ropes and answered almost all my questions, and for the ones he didn't know, he would direct me to someone who did.

Mr. Burnoski introduced me to bridge designers, road designers, landscape architects, regular architects, mapping experts, water treatment experts, and a lot of people with suits and ties. I visited water treatment plants and sewer treatment plants as well as the AECOM building in Cleveland, where I met even more professionals. I met 3 college students who worked for AECOM because of a similar program than our own.

 I was in several important meetings that involved the projects that are being done in the city of Warren. But for the most part my internship was just meeting and greeting. I learned a lot about etiquette in the workplace and how to be formal in front of important people. Even though I wanted to learn more about the physical side of engineering, I still enjoyed my time at AECOM.