Once finals are done, papers submitted and grades posted many students look forward to three months of relaxtion, vacation or a summer job.
Whether it's a full-time, part-time or summer sales position many students look forward to earning some extra cash or their next year's living expenses.
But, for some, they use that opportunity to not just earn a wage, but to continue their education through an internship.
Many Materials Science & Engineering students take this route and this past summer was no exception.
Students Megan Stephanz (BS/MS, '17), Kyle Campbell (BS, '16), Luke Whitson (BS '16), Emily Timmins (BS, '17) and Devin Richie (BS, '17) spent their summer at an internship.
We asked them a little about their experiences and here is what they had to say --
Where did you all do your internship?
Megan - IM Flash, LLC in Lehi, Utah.
Luke - Northrop Grumman in Ogden.
Emily - Melaleuca, Inc. in Idaho Falls, Idaho.
Devin - Power Practical here in Salt Lake.
Kyle - BAE Systems on Hill Air Force Base.
How long did your internship last?
Megan - 11 weeks, but stayed an extra paid week to wrap up a few parts on my project. I felt that it could be fleshed out better.
Luke - Three months ... from May 4th to August 7th.
Emily - mid-May to mid-August.
Devin - From the first of May to the end of August, so almost four months.
Kyle - 12 weeks.
What kind of responsibilities were you given at your internship?
Megan - I mainly worked with a new piece of technology that IM Flash has never used. My assignment was to test its' limits and abilities and to see whether it could do everything it was marketed to do.
Luke - I worked on the Material Selection and Corrosion Team. I mainly evaluated new materials and chemicals being implemented into the weapon systems and choose protective coatings what would inhibit the effects of corrosion.
Emily - I worked with the bath and body team in research and development. I worked on various projects dealing ingredient replacement, product development, product maintenanc and quality control. I also made shampoos, conditioners, lotions, facial cleansers and perfumes -- both current and in-development products.
What advice would you give to other MSE students wanting to do an internship?
Megan - Lots. Take advantage of the Career Fair. Perfect your resume and minute long "elevator pitch" about yourself. Don't put your eggs all in one basket at the fair. Don't be afraid to talk to someone and give them your resume. Additionally, actually read the month emails from the academic advisor. There are tons of research internship opportunities who are ASKING for students. Just watch the deadlines and apply.
Devin - Get out there and apply to what sounds interesting to you. I almost didn't apply for my internship, because I thought I was underqualified. But, I realized I had nothing to lose and applied. It's really a win-win, because even if you don't get the internship, you might get good interview practice.
Kyle - Build a solid resume, cover letter and letters of recommendation. Do your research, get proficient at Excel and practice on your presentation skills. Companies want to hire people that work well within a team, be a happy person.
What was your favorite part about your internship?
Megan - My favorite part was being able to work hands-on with a completely new technology that will almost certainly be heavily used in the future. I was happy that my internship was involved with something that would have a real impact with the company and wasn't just me to grab coffee for the office. The people at IM Flas are great and I enjoyed getting to know them and we had a number of socials allowing that kind of interaction -- including a Lagoon Day.
Luke - I loved not being treated like an intern. There were times I had to go to meetings and give briefings without my mentor. I also had to inform other members of the project about team's inputs and concerns. During those briefings my opinions were respected and taken into account when finding solutions to problems presented to the group.
Emily - Being able to see the applications of what I was doing and knowing that what I was doing was going to be put into large scale productions that would make its' way to the consumer.
Kyle - I loved being given my own projects and allowed to work them out in my own way before presenting them to the team. I loved collaborating with others and discussing problems and solutions with them.