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Jose Velasco

Jose Velasco

  • Major: Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
  • Company: Eastman
  • Graduation Year: May 2021
  • E-mail:


I did my co-op with Eastman in Kingsport, Tennessee for three terms. Eastman is primarily known for Tritan Plastic which is used in water bottles such as Camelbaks. I started my co-op in a research and development role in Eastman's adhesive technology group where I did performance testing on their adhesive products. My second term was in the aviation fluids technology group where I researched the effects of various additives on the properties of turbine oil. My final term was in the process engineering division where I supported the manufacturing areas at the Kingsport site. This role focused on design of unit operations and conceptual chemical engineering.          

I decided to co-op to gain a diverse experience of what chemical engineering has to offer. I expected for a co-op to help me to decide what areas I would prefer to work in. The work experience was also invaluable as it would help me to be more competitive when applying for full-time positions.    

My most significant experience was realizing the importance of networking with people. Networking allowed me to learn more about groups and roles that I was interested in. It also helped me to make strong connections with others so that I could ask for help or expertise in a certain area.     

My co-op has helped solidify the coursework that I learned at UT by putting it to practical use. While working, I also picked up on slight nuances and other useful information that I did not learn in class. My co-op also helped me to practice my public speaking, communication, and overall business professionalism which is something that is fairly hard to practice while in school. Overall, my co-op has made me feel confident and excited to return back to the workplace.           

One of the biggest things that companies look for when hiring students is work experience. Co-ops are fantastic ways to gain this while also establishing good connections with the company that you are working for.           

During my free time, I play soccer, volleyball and video games and board games. I enjoy watching sports and I love to snowboard.          

Jose Velasco

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