Internships Solidify Future Career Plans
This summer I had an amazing opportunity to intern at Wright industries as an Applications Engineer, mostly doing work in CAD. Designing and building things is something I have always been interested in. When I started 9th grade at Stratford STEM Magnet High School, I saw that there was an engineering pathway, and since engineering is all about designing and building things I decided that I should take that pathway. At the end if my 11th grade year I got an opportunity to apply for an internship at Wright Industries. I have been considering getting a degree in mechanical engineering so the internship was the perfect opportunity for me to experience what it would be like working as an engineer, and find out if engineering is something I want to do as a career.
The first day was mostly spent doing all of the necessary paperwork and things that had to be done before we could start work, but as soon as we got to the office toward the end of the day we got our first project. We started off with something simple so we could learn how to use Solid Works. At school we have been using Autodesk Inventor, which I think is easier to learn how to do 3D modeling with, but Solid Works is a more technical program and just a little more advanced than Autodesk Inventor. Autodesk assumes more than Solid Works does, which makes it a little easier to use but Solid Works can be more accurate. Our first project was making an independent testing station for LED screens. Most of the parts we needed were already made, so we just had to put them all together.
The next project we worked was a packaging line. On this project we had to create more of the parts ourselves and get the files for some of the machines from the companies that make them using the Internet. We were still getting used to using Solid Works at this point, and with this project I really got the hang of using mates, which is how different parts are held together, and found that I like using Solid Works much more than Autodesk. After several revisions we got a model done.
The biggest project I have worked on this summer was for a company that was making pharmaceuticals. It took several weeks and there were several different iterations that were made. At first the line had one side, but to make it easier to service I had to add a second side to the line. This required stretching the whole enclosure.
One of the things I had to do on this project was make something to spread the lyospheres on the tray before it is put into the freezer. It took a few designs, but I ended up adding a wedge to the gripper on the robot.
After all of this work the customer decided they wanted to make the line smaller to help cut down on cost. We decided to completely change the enclosure from a rectangle to a polygon type shape. It took a few days to do but turned out really well.
During my internship I didn’t only work in Solid Works, I also got a chance to help with the paperwork of engineering. I used Microsoft Word to edit proposals that were being sent off to companies. I used Microsoft Excel to work on spreadsheets showing part numbers, where they came from, and their cost. I also learned about a program I didn’t know existed called Visio. Visio is a Microsoft program used for making flowcharts.
This internship has been a great experience for me this summer. I have learned how to do some things in Microsoft Office programs I didn’t know about before, and I have learned how to use Solid Works. From what I have seen Solid Works is more promently used profesionaly than Autodesk. The internship has helped me decied that engineering is definitely a career that I want to pursue.