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Emily Watson

Emily Watson


Macon, Georgia

My first co-op was with Flint Group in Asheville, North Carolina. The site manufactured printing sleeves and blankets for industrial printing presses. I worked in the technology group on adhesive troubleshooting, UV curing optimization, and product improvement. My second co-op was with ExxonMobil Fuels and Lubricants. I worked in the operations support department on new facility design, plant test planning, and developing monitoring tools.

My most recent co-op was with ExxonMobil Chemicals at an olefins plant. Here I was in the business optimization section where I worked on creating incremental pricing models for utilities, product-system optimizations, planning tool development, and developing business cases for different feedstocks. My most recent internship was with Mars Petcare in Franklin, Tennessee, where I worked as a product development scientist. I worked on projects to qualify new materials and make cost-saving adjustments to recipes.

I decided to co-op to gain invaluable experience before entering the workforce, explore different career options, save money for school and to have the opportunity to travel around the country. One of the most important skills I learned was how to influence without power. In order to drive projects to completion, it is often necessary to get information and gain alignment from many different people, all of whom are busy and have other responsibilities. It is very powerful to be able to convince people to see the value in and support your project, all of which stems from having solid intrapersonal and communication skills. 

Co-op has helped me develop communication skills, a healthy work ethic and taught me how to be resourceful. I have also learned about many chemical engineering concepts firsthand by seeing chemical plants in operation. 

I believe that co-op is a wonderful way to both learn and have valuable experiences that will help you in many facets of your life from personal discovery, to academics, to professional development.

I am an avid competitive equestrian in endurance riding. I also enjoy trail running/mountain biking with my dog, enjoying good music with friends, and being in nature.

I am always happy to answer any questions about the co-op program, talk about my experiences, or discuss a future co-op's goals and plans.

Emily Watson

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