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Internship Experience with Hannah Nelson

The Discover Program 

In any workplace, multi-dimensional problem-solving and thinking are critical. Today, employees favor potential employees who emulate those traits and bring relevant internship experience to the table. Internships are invaluable, especially for college students and graduates.

An internship brings an abstract theory that is presented and discussed in the classroom to life. And even more than that, it’s discovering what it’s really like to work somewhere. With recruiters from every company seeking out the top candidates, it can be a challenge to attract top talent.

The Discover Program Obernel challenges potential interns to come find out the real deal. Only they can decide if what we’re telling them at career fairs and interviews matches up with our actual company, actual opportunities, actual culture. We want our interns to discover what it’s like to put out some of the most innovative engineering and construction projects in our region. We want them to discover what it means to be a part of a company who cares.

One intern who took the challenge this past summer was Hannah Nelson. Hannah is majoring in Mechanical Engineering at Michigan Technological University. While at Obernel, she worked as a Mechanical Engineering Intern.

Projects Worked On:

While working with our team of mechanical engineers, Hannah had the opportunity to take part in a variety of projects. Her main role was to work through the LEED program to fill out project forms. Additionally, Hannah experienced the construction administration process. She attended pre-construction meetings, reviewed shop drawings, and participated in site visits. Finally, Hannah was tasked with figuring out code changes for specific areas to ensure accuracy and updated policies.

Valuable Lessons Learned:

Through Hannah’s Internship, she has learned about the LEED program and how to navigate Trace700 and Bluebeam. These are all vital systems and programs in the engineering sector. Hannah appreciated the opportunity to learn more about each of them because she knows they will be utilized in her future career.

Nelson stated, “It’s interesting to see all the different work that takes place and get to learn more about all the sides of mechanical engineering.”

Hannah gained an understanding of codes, energy performance, indoor air quality, indoor/outdoor water usage, and refrigerant management. Furthermore, how to accuracy load calculations, review shop drawings, and evaluate existing plumbing and HVAC systems were subjects Hannah learned more about this summer.

“I never really realized how much goes into the design and construction of plumbing and HVAC systems,” Nelson said, “It’s not really something I’ve gotten to learn about in my schooling.”

Leaving an Impact:

Hannah has left a positive and lasting impact on Obernel and our clients. She explains, “I made sure the appropriate equipment was being installed in new buildings, so they are safe and comfortable for people to use and enjoy.”

Comments on Hannah from her Mentor:

“We were quite impressed with Hannah’s attention to detail, technical aptitude, and dedicated work effort. She was very professional, stayed focused throughout the summer and did an exceptional job with the wide range of tasks that were assigned to her. We hope it was a satisfying and well-rounded internship experience that met her expectations!” – Cole Carlson

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