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Darrell Russell

Darrell Russell


Dominion Energy is the company I did my co-op with. They are a power company mainly operating in Virginia. I did three cooperative rotations in Richmond, Virginia, and Dominion Energy's Innsbrook office. I spent all three rotations working in the Nuclear Safety Analysis group.

Firstly, the working experience not only gives an advantage in the job market but also I could see first-hand if the engineering experience would be something I wanted to continue to pursue. Secondly, it allowed for an earlier start in co-ops and internships, as I was accepted as a sophomore. Lastly, it allowed for a longer experience with a single company compared to an internship.     

I worked with a mentor to reevaluate flow conditions at several nuclear power plants to verify the currently installed operating limits were effective safety margins for continued operations. This was an extremely sensitive and potentially costly evaluation that saved the plants from unnecessary shutdowns and large losses of revenue due to those shutdowns.           

Working on long term projects, with a team, that have real-world and potentially long-term consequences, both good and bad, has made me realize how much I as an engineer can affect the world. That reality has made me more attentive to professional and academic projects. Being part of a co-op is a win-win situation. The worst case scenario is that you find that the company or specific job is not something you would want to be a part of, in which case you will still gain professional experience and possibly a reference.        

I love bonsai, hiking, biking, and kayaking when I am not studying or going to class.

Darrell Russell

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