Each year Gausman & Moore provides internship opportunities for young people working toward degrees in related fields of study. These experiences can help them as they grow professionally and personally, as they gain lifelong knowledge and skills. Two of our current full-time staff members, Drew Erickson and Casey Sveiven, were once G&M interns, and they recently spoke about their internship experience and how it influenced where each of them is at today.
Once-intern Drew Erickson is now a Graduate Engineer for Gausman & Moore in Roseville, Minnesota. However, in 2016, he filled the role of Mechanical Engineering Intern, while also studying at Minnesota State University, Mankato. From his internship time at G&M, he learned invaluable skills and understandings, all of which he has taken with him as he’s moved forward with the company.
Throughout the internship, he became efficient in Revit CAD software (a common software used by our engineers), performed design and redesign work, utilized energy modeling, sized piping and ductwork, and analyzed HVAC systems.
Along with being able to communicate with clients on a regular basis, Erickson helped complete a large retail store’s redesigns, stating it was his most memorable internship experience. The project helps him fully understand the operations of the engineering industry from a design’s beginning to end. As an engineer, he said it’s important to be able to interpret various standards and ‘languages’ and be able to pull them all together to reach a common understanding of a project’s goal and design. With these skills, he and his team were able to deliver an exceptional product to the client.
Though Erickson does not regularly work with or oversee interns as a full-time employee, he does interact with new employee team members and enjoys giving them advice.
“I try to make each small learning exercise as simple and non-stressful as possible,” he said. “Moving companies or starting fresh can be stressful, and to become efficient, I believe helping them see the tasks as simple as possible [helps them find the] ‘big picture’ behind the projects.”
Casey Sveiven held the title Electrical Designer during his internship experience at G&M, though he now is a Graduate Engineer at our Santa Clarita, California office. While he immersed himself in all things electrical engineering with G&M, he was in the process of obtaining an Electrical Engineering degree from California State University, Chico. The knowledge gained from his internship experience has helped him become an even more rounded employee.
The majority of his time was spent performing tasks on CAD—turning redlines into CAD drawings and assisting with developing details. As the internship progressed, he took on larger responsibilities, such as energy compliance analyses, voltage drop, and electrical load calculations.
His most memorable project from his internship happened to also be his largest at that point. Sveiven was part of a team working on a generator installation project for a local high school. While working with the project manager, he was given the opportunity to ask many questions and experiment with different options, which he said definitely helped him grow his skills and knowledge, one being the importance of initiative. Paralysis by analysis can be a real issue, especially when faced with an unfamiliar task, he said. But the accessibility and support of teammates and managers helped him understand his tasks and ask questions along the way.
“The project managers and designers at Gausman & Moore always made time to help me learn, and I never had [the] fear of diving into a project, because I knew I had support and resources from the staff,” he said.
As an intern, he was always proud to be part of a team that encouraged his development and presented him with new challenges constantly. It gave him the confidence he has today, knowing he’s making valuable contributions to a team. Since becoming a full-time employee, Sveiven has had the opportunity to work with various interns and providing advice he also received during his internship.
“I encourage them to dive into any task and not be afraid to ask questions,” he said. “An internship is a unique opportunity in one’s career. It is a time to explore all the new skills that will be necessary to develop a successful career, and there will never be a better time to immerse yourself.”