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Learning on the Job

Pictured above, from left to right: (Front row: Clay Hemphill, Megan Duhlmaine)  (Middle row: Jena Wilson, Joe Manning, Riley Ruskamp, Brendan Findall)  (Back row: Joe Baratta, Brock Droescher, Jake Cook).

Learning on the Job: Interning at E&A

Internships promise real-world experience and an opportunity for students to “test-drive” a job, company and industry. Oftentimes, the reality of the internship doesn’t turn out to be quite this beneficial, though.

E&A’s Nicolette Villwok, director of human resources, had this in mind when she formalized E&A’s Summer Internship Program, shaping it into an educational experience that gives participants a comprehensive view of our industry, not just a to-do list.

“We hope this adds a new perspective to the concepts the interns are learning during the school year,” says Nicolette.

Nine students started E&A’s program in May. Some from local universities, others from many miles away. Joe Baratta is returning to E&A’s internship program for the third year in a row. As a senior at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln studying civil engineering, Joe said he’s really enjoying applying what he’s learned in school to his work at E&A.

Joe’s first summer with E&A was spent working in construction administration. Last year, he worked with the surveying department and this year he’s helping out the civil engineering team.

“My favorite part of this place is obviously the people. I could do this job anywhere, I could go anywhere, but it’s the people that make me come back year after year.” says Joe.

Joe, along with the others, will get hands-on experience while working closely with the people in their assigned departments. Nicolette supplements this training with lessons on tools used in the industry, like Auto CAD and map plans.

They will also hear from some of E&A’s experienced employees about their experiences getting to their current role and their day-to-day tasks. These presentations help build an understanding of what goes into building a reputable career and what the future of these jobs can become.

In August, the program will conclude with presentations by the interns to E&A’s leadership team. They are able to share what they have learned and what they might have changed, if given the chance.

“We’ve found these presentations to be a good chance for the Interns to gain presentation experience, and a great source of feedback for E&A,” says Nicolette.

The 2017 E&A intern group introducing themselves before an educational activity put together by Nicolette Villwok, Director of Human Resources (far left).

Civil Engineering Technician Danny Kaven presenting a lesson to the 2017 E&A intern group.

The 2017 E&A intern group enjoying lunch with some of our leaders.

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