- Major: Industrial & Systems Engineering
- E-mail: email@example.com
I did my co-op with Shaw Industries Inc. in their flooring section in Chatsworth, Georgia. I worked in the general administration area and focused on waste reduction, twisting data analysis, heat set up time improvement.
In the Chickamauga, Georgia, plant I worked in primary extrusion and carried out process control and quality control, collected data, collaborated with vendors, automation, maintenance, safety, production, management, and technical departments. In Dalton, Georgia, I worked in corporate quality and performed quality control, conducted division wide studies and analyzed the results, developed a plan for residential soft surface division to have internal supply chain traceability.
I decided to co-op to get experience in my major, hone in on what exactly I wanted to do with industrial engineering, and take advantage of the great opportunity that co-op is. I learned during my work experience that people are willing to help you. You just need to ask the right questions, even if it is saying that you don't even know where to begin and asking for help. Leverage your network. You have a unique experience as a co-op student to potentially work in three different departments or divisions within a company and thus have a well-rounded view of the company, what exists and is used in certain areas of the company, and have a well-rounded support network for future projects. My previous two co-op rotations provided me with a very strong foundation and network to be in a corporate position my last rotation.
Since I started my co-op after my third semester of college, I came back to school more prepared for my classes because I had seen, used, or heard about principles or tools being taught in class at my co-op. This helped me succeed academically, be engaged with my work, and me excited to learn. I think having co-op experience makes you initially a better engineer because you have already figured out how to work in a professional environment and you better understand how to apply what you have learned in school since you had an engineering job while in school.
Don't be scared to leave school for a semester or two. The co-op program is a very valuable experience. When searching for a co-op, I think it is best to find a program that has other co-op students that you live with or near. Having other students around that you can learn from and be friends with makes the co-op experience even better.
I love to serve and lead with Cru, spend time with my Cornerstone Church of Knoxville family, hang out with my friends, and cheer on the Vols.