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The relatively short length of the experience isn’t detracting from Marquis Scholar Erin O’Brien’s ’02 internship at Greenhorne & O’Mara (G & O), a civil engineering firm that specializes in highway design.

An incoming senior with a double major in both civil and environmental engineering and international studies, O’Brien is working in the company’s Mechanicsburg, Pa. office on the transportation team, which is responsible for the design of roads, ramps, interchanges, etc. The Mechanicsburg office also specializes in traffic engineering, environmental engineering, and structural engineering.

O’Brien met G & O representatives at the fall Career Fair on campus last year. “During the second semester, I was seeking an internship within commuting distance of my home in Carlisle, so I contacted G & O,” she says. “After my interview with Rick Poplaski ’90, I knew that G & O was a place where I would love to work. To my great delight, they offered me the job.”

The internship began May 24 and will conclude at the end of August. “My favorite part about the job is the awesome people with whom I am privileged to work,” she notes. “On my first day of work, everyone gathered in the conference room at lunchtime to welcome me with a pizza party. I had to give a 10-minute ‘speech’ telling them all about me. Since that first day, everyone has continued to make me feel a part of the group, despite the fact that I will only be there for a relatively short time. I love the way all of my coworkers work very hard, but also take time out to chat and learn more about everyone’s interests outside of work.”

O’Brien also appreciates the employees’ willingness to invest time in teaching her despite the short length of the job. “I’ve learned some of the basics of highway design, and I’ve gained some good experience creating digital drawings using Microstation, a computer aided design program similar to AutoCADD,” she says. “I’ve also learned so much just from watching my coworkers and asking a million questions about everything. I am so thankful for everyone’s patience with me and their willingness to stop what they are doing to help me or answer my questions.”

O’Brien was a member of the Lafayette team that took third place in the Pennsylvania-Delaware Region of the 2001 National Concrete Canoe Competition, held April 28 at Peace Valley Park, Lake Galena, just north of Doylestown, Pa. She is a Bible study leader for Lafayette Christian Fellowship.

Categorized in: Academic News