- Major: Electrical Engineering
- Company: Bridgestone
- Graduation Year: May 2022
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
I was on my co-op assignment with Bridgestone Tires, in McMinnville, Tennessee, for 14 months. I worked in the engineering department which works on continuous improvement and maintenance of the facility.
I needed real working experience. To be under pressure to learn and solve problems at production speed. A major achievement was completing a modification to an assembly machine that automated a separate step of the operator that used to be manual application. This involved lots of cross department organization, presentations, and scheduling. As well as endless opportunities for technical mishaps and failures to learn for programming, electronics, and mechanics. The modification was pushed to 30 machines total with only nine more to make operational by the time I left.
The co-op forced me into situations that I had to adapt quickly to solve problems. To show up as prepared as possible but also how to quickly teach myself a machine working from the ground up to solve a problem.
Co-op is almost essential for an engineering major. School is practice on how to teach yourself but the work is where you exponentially grow in that ability. Engineering is a position of a lot of responsibility and can lead to breaking just as many things as you improve. This enriching but stressful growing stage is best experienced within a forgiving co-op assignment rather than a full-fledged engineer.
I enjoy going to the recreation center and starting pickup volleyball or basketball games before heading to the library.
Pro-tip: My co-op was a life changing experience. I would recommend anyone take an opportunity to go into the work force away from school. These lessons cannot be learned anywhere else but in the field.