When Cory Meredith applied for summer internships, he wasn’t sure what to expect. As an intern with McClure Engineering Company’s (MEC) infrastructure services department, he has discovered the big picture behind the concepts he is learning in the classroom.
Throughout his internship, the State Technical College of Missouri sophomore is able to participate in the day-to-day tasks performed by the infrastructure team in Macon, Mo. He has worked alongside technicians and civil engineers in and out of the office, and gained a broad range of project experience.
“One of the most interesting experiences I’ve had so far was visiting a water treatment plant,” said Meredith. “I had not seen one in person and it was interesting to see the scope of the process.”
Project Manager of Infrastructure Services Aaron McVicker serves as Meredith’s mentor, and works to make sure his internship experience includes every segment of the department.
“Instead of always putting work in front of him, I like getting him out in the field to shadow others throughout the day,” said McVicker.
In addition to shadowing projects in the field, Meredith is also able to work hands-on in multiple engineering programs during his internship. Currently, he is working in AutoCAD to assist on a bridge project.
“He’s now familiar with what is involved in a bridge project, including the plans and final deliverable,” said McVicker. “Then, through shadowing, he is seeing what goes into those plans from AutoCAD.”
Working on a project from the preliminary stages to the final result has shown Meredith the level of planning and detail that is required for his career path.
“I’ve realized what I’ve learned in class is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Meredith. “I’ve been able to recognize concepts from school during my internship, but there’s a lot more to it.”
By working directly with projects, MEC provides its interns with experiences that complement their time in the classroom. While it may be daunting to take on new responsibilities for real-world projects, Meredith has shown he is up for the challenge.
“The red line markups I gave him on AutoCAD for the bridge project was not something he had done before,” said McVicker. “But he’s very driven and willing to take on any task that’s given to him.”
Looking back at his internship so far, Meredith says his interest in engineering has been confirmed. Whether it is observing in the field or learning how to use software in the office, the work he’s done has given him confidence in his chosen career path.
“My internship has shown me that in this career I’ll be able to go out in the field and see how the drawings we create in the office take shape,” said Meredith. “I find that aspect really interesting, and am excited to learn more about it throughout the rest of my time with MEC.”