"Even though setting up your future can be stressful at times, it should ultimately be enjoyable. I've enjoyed my experiences at UB so far and would return to any of them knowing the outcome. I look forward to what I'll learn both in getting my MS and along my career. I hope to never stop learning."
Hometown: Selden, NY
Program of study, Graduation Year: Electrical Engineering BS, Mathematics BA
Why did you choose to study electrical engineering at UB?
I knew I wanted to be an engineer for years, but I actually came to UB as a chemical engineer, since UB is known as one of the top SUNY schools for engineering. However, I had been tinkering with electronics late into high school and was beginning to feel I would enjoy the electrical field more than chemical. Early on in college, I switched to EE because of the hands on learning I could do at clubs like IEEE. I'm glad I made the switch, but I don't think I would have disliked either field.
Tell us about your internship experiences.
I had two internships, one at PSEG (utility) on Long Island and one at Moog in East Aurora, NY. I worked at PSEG the summer following my sophomore year. I have been working at Moog from summer 2019 at least until summer 2020.
At PSEG, I repaired and extended the secondary electrical grid. At Moog, I facilitated production of electronic actuator control boards for aircraft. I was very surprised to see the variety of fields EE's can work in. You can enter a utilities company to learn how to design a safe, robust electrical distribution system. You could also find yourself at a precision motor control company learning how to operate and repair test equipment to prioritize quality of production. Both experiences helped me form an "engineering mindset", teaching me to break down problems into approachable tasks and solve them individually.
How did you get the internship opportunity?
I figured my utility company at Long Island would be hiring, so I looked them up and applied. Surprisingly, there wasn't any secret sauce to that application as I simply explained my experiences and got the job. I received an opportunity at Moog after attending the UB Career Fair in the fall of 2018.
What advice would you give students interested in internships?
Don't think about internships as an immediate goal. First look at what you can do to get hands on experience in your field, like clubs or self-motivated projects. If you think you enjoy your field based on these experiences, then go for an internship to see what it's like in industry, using your new experience to earn you a place in the company. Networking is also a good way to be introduced to industry. Overall, remember the goal is to find something you want to turn into a career.
Tell us about your career or future plans.
I am registered to continue to graduate school at UB for my MSEE. There's still plenty to learn. I would like to explore the field of networking and communications, since it's one of the few fields that still seems like complete magic to me. As for what career I want to pursue, there are many options I'm hoping to explore, but companies like Moog or PSEG are very inviting.
Anything else you would like to mention?
Even though setting up your future can be stressful at times, it should ultimately be enjoyable. I've enjoyed my experiences at UB so far and would return to any of them knowing the outcome. I look forward to what I'll learn both in getting my MS and along my career. I hope to never stop learning.