The following is Navaeh's description of his experience:
I am an uprising sophomore this upcoming fall. I am pursuing to get my degree in Civil Engineering specializing in Project Management. I was fortunate enough to get an internship my freshman year at Amtrak over the summer in New York City.
My position is Engineering Project Manager where my job functions consist of assisting in track design groups with track layouts and design plan reviews, assist in management and supervision of engineering resources in the field such as rail grinding, Sperry car testing, concrete tie inspection, and vegetation control. Also assisting in providing technically, logistical, and administration support to ensure successful completion of assigned project tasks within scope, schedule and budget, assisting in track geometry, curve modification design and capital maintenance.
Getting a position showed that my independent work was being noticed. For instance, I attended Project Management workshops at University at Buffalo that were intended for juniors and seniors, I also invested time in strengthening my skill set such as Auto Cad and finding jobs on campus that was related to management and maintenance of resources . Having experiences that related to the sciences and management on my resume set me up to get an internship at a large company specifically in the field of Project Management.
I am currently working on two projects called Manhattan West and 11th Ave Vault ATS , where Amtrak is involved in protecting their assets and insuring safety to their trains that are going to run below a new development owned by a different company and replace an automatic switch transfer at one of the stations. Not to mention I assist in making sure contractors complete all their tasks such as renovations of bathrooms, and renovating escalators in Penn Station. I also attend business meetings where I take note if each companies abide by the specific rules of safety provided by Amtrak.
Working for Amtrak gave me insight to the role Project Managers but also open doors by building connections with engineers in different fields and companies that work with Amtrak. It feels great that my work is used during business meetings by my manager to make sure requirements are met. I have learned tremendously by working one on one with engineers that are guiding me in the right path for my future.
My advice to fellow engineers is to invest time into building your skill set which will make you stand out in the crowd and use your free time productively. Working at Amtrak I was given many responsibilities where I learned from mistakes but also used my own critical thinking skills to solve problems. My work at Amtrak's Engineering Department has landed me a position for following years to come and through practice and dedication I am certain my experiences as an undergraduate will allow me to have a smoother transition into the job world after I graduate.
If you are interested in being UB ASCE's Featured Intern or Researcher, click here.