“Being able to experience this job, I realized that everything we do at school is a huge preparation for what is to come next.”
Kimberly Caruso, a junior mechanical engineering major, is a member of the University of Delaware’s Women’s Swimming and Diving team as a diver. Combined with a double minor in economics and mathematics, Kimberly’s major in mechanical engineering helped land her a summer internship with Air Products and Chemicals this summer. After networking, researching and interviewing, Kim became a member of APC’s Allentown Corporate Headquarters.
Read more about her experience and how you can learn from it below!
Name: Kimberly Caruso
Sport you play at UD: Women’s Swimming and Diving (Diver)
Major: Mechanical Engineering with minors in Economics and Mathematics
Expected Year of Graduation: 2016
Where did you intern? Air Products and Chemicals (Allentown Corporate Headquarters)
How did you hear about your internship? Briefly explain the interview process, as well.
I heard about the Air Products through the Career Fair. I am a Career Ambassador, and I walked the Air Products’ recruiters to their table and helped them set up. The networking process began there. We were casually talking about what activities I was involved in at UD, as well as, opportunities their company has to offer. After the career fair started, I went over to their booth and continued to ask questions about what they do, and how I could get involved. I handed the gentleman my resume and received an email later that week, asking me to interview with them. During the interview, the recruiter asked a variety of questions on why I wanted to work at Air Products. He also had my resume in front of him, and went step by step through all of my major accomplishments on the sheet and asked me in-depth questions about each. This was, in my opinion, the best interview because it was just me talking about things I was very familiar with, making it more comfortable and fun.
As an intern in the supply chain, I worked to optimize different systems within the company, and help maximize profits and productivity. I did a lot of research with the efficiencies of the plants and helped determine trends to help with future operating tactics. I also worked with a team to help analyze customer behavior vs. maximum production of our plants, trying to see where opportunity lays. I worked mainly in the business side of the company, but was still able to get a sense of where more technical knowledge would be very helpful in the position.
What was your favorite thing (or something unexpected) that happened during your internship?
The most enjoyable part of my internship was the conclusions I was able to draw. From only working there for a limited time, I was able to see where my work was leading the company, and got a sense of the overall pictures I was trying to draw. I toured a plant and went through different IET and R&D building while on site and seeing the technology actually taking place was a huge treat. I was able to see the actual production lines and what I was working on optimizing.
As a student athlete, what is one thing you can take away from your internship and apply to your classes and/or in your sport here at the University of Delaware?
Being able to experience this job, I realized that everything we do at school is a huge preparation for what is to come next. This was the first time I was actually using knowledge learned in the classroom in a real life application, on real improvements. As a student-athlete, I know that goal-setting is a huge way to improve your skills. This summer, whether it was long term goals for the company as a whole, or short term goals for me in my position, these goals helped keep me focused during my 8 hour work days. I think goal setting can be directly applied to my time as a student-athlete here at the UD, and it is something that I have improved upon since starting my internship this summer.
Any words of wisdom for other students who may be interested in pursuing this or a similar internship?
I would say, take advantage of every experience you have to learn something new. I learned so much this summer and I know I am nowhere near where I hope to be in just a few short years. By setting up informational interviews with those more experienced, or in a different field than you are, it opens up so many doors for innovation and improvement. By knowing something new or different, it sets you apart from the crowd, and that is what companies need.
Any additional words of career wisdom that you would like to share?
Go to the career fairs! It doesn’t matter if you are looking for a job now, or even have no idea what you want to do with your life. There are so many opportunities available to students. Just by going to an event like this and talking to an employer, you could find yourself in a position you never even dreamed of, but absolutely love!
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University of Delaware Career Services