2019 Internship Lunch With Collins Aerospace

On Friday, February 15th, Codecraft Works — along with a few employees of Collins Aerospace — organized a lunch for Codecraft’s soon-to-be-graduating student interns. Here, our interns were free to ask questions of and receive advice from our special guests about what they can expect in the future of their professional and academic careers.

The conversation was lively, and there was a lot of laughter shared between the mentors and our interns. Topics of conversation included school choice, how to choose a degree, and what to do while in college in order to stand out in the job market.

One thing that was made immediately clear was the ambition of our interns. As they introduced themselves, they talked about their future career goals, and our mentors were pleased with how confident and focused they were. Of course, all our guests agreed that though this ambition was a great thing to have, college — specifically your undergraduate years — are about surveying different areas of study and being general with your degree path.

For example, our intern Nakeya wishes to pursue a biomedical degree. Katarina Vuckovic told her, “[a] lot of people going into biomedical are going to become doctors. A lot of successful biomedical engineers I know studied electrical engineering.

“Bachelor’s degrees are generic and basic,” she continued. “If you do decide to go further into your education, pursue biomedical while earning your master’s degree.”

The other engineers from Collins Aerospace nodded in agreement, noting that most people chose to be more general with their degrees before entering their respective fields. Of course, this isn’t to say that young college students can’t be specific with their degrees in their undergraduate years. All this means is that, if they’re still undecided or are lacking confidence in their choices, they have the space and time to survey different courses and paths. Not everyone has to have a plan at eighteen.

Melinda Refford kept this idea going, encouraging our interns to do more than just schoolwork while they are away.

“Find the things you like and do them and don’t worry about the grade, worry about the experience” said Refford. “The doors will open and things will work out-sometimes you have to blaze your own trail.”

Again, it isn’t that grades don’t matter, but it’s that other things matter as well. Allowing yourself to join clubs, learn new languages and foster passions will only help you moving forward. And, applying for jobs and securing internships while in school will be the opportunities that allow for a future.

“In your first internship, put your best foot forward and do the best you can, because that can help you get a good job when you graduate,” said Refford. “You run into the same people over and over again in the industry, and you can create a good reputation for yourself from your first internship.”

Kevin Van Landingham added to this, telling our interns that “associating yourself with people that share your interests and talents will prepare you for a future career.” So, personal connections are just as important as the professional ones.

This lunch reminded our interns of two things:

1. They don’t need to worry about all the details right now. So long as they follow their passions and talents, life will open doors.

2. They’re already so far ahead of the pack when it comes to balancing school, work and extracurricular activities. Because of their internships with Codecraft, they’re already gaining real-world, professional experience.

At the end of the lunch, the members of Collins Aerospace invited our interns to reach out to them at any point in their academic careers should they need or want advice. Already, our Codecraft interns are making important connections within their field.

This was the first time we have hosted a lunch like this for our interns, and we hope to have this for the future of our internship program. We are so thankful to the engineers from Collins Aerospace for taking the time to connect with our interns. This is just one more reason why Codecraft Works.