An Internship Like No Other
This past summer I worked as a full-time intern for Hoyle, Tanner’s Transportation and Environmental groups, and will continue in a part-time capacity during school. I graduated from the UNH College of Engineering and Physical Sciences with a Bachelor degree in Civil Engineering in May, but am continuing at UNH to pursue a Master of Engineering degree with a focus in water resources. I hope to one day move towards coastal engineering, specifically sea level rise modeling and climate change adaptation, as it becomes a more widespread field.
Prior to starting my internship at Hoyle, Tanner I worked during school in the GIS lab for the UNH Earth Systems Research Center and the previous two summers interned at other engineering firms. That experience provided me a solid base for continuing work in the industry, and much of this foundational knowledge allowed me to further my development as a young engineer and expand my toolbox while working here at Hoyle, Tanner.
Having previously worked at two other consulting firms, I started the Hoyle, Tanner internship expecting more of the same, but I was quickly thrown in the deep end and found myself experiencing a whole host of new challenges. One thing stood out as a very positive sign to me early on at Hoyle, Tanner, for my first time while working in the industry, I started doing work that felt like my own. Rather than working on tasks with clearly laid-out goals and outcomes I was given opportunities to solve new problems in collaboration with multi-disciplinary teams. I did fieldwork and site visits, learned new software tools to model hydraulic systems, and applied concepts from my academic experience to real-world scenarios. At Hoyle, Tanner I had the freedom to prove myself and the support system necessary to succeed. This type of work helped me feel a sense of responsibility for the company; I found myself more committed to and focused on the job because I felt like a valued member of the team rather than a temporary worker meant to help with menial tasks.
From my first day, I’ve been constantly seeing ways that this company is trying to innovate and evolve. Throughout the summer I regularly heard about new technologies Hoyle, Tanner wanted to implement, and I saw many of my coworkers’ commitment to pursuing additional training and bettering themselves as engineers. This includes expanding Hoyle, Tanner’s capabilities into entirely new fields. To me, this feels like a company where you have the opportunity to stand out, separate yourself from the crowd, and be challenged to innovate and excel in your field.
During my internship with Hoyle, Tanner I was able to work on a wide variety of projects and perform an even wider variety of tasks. My supervisor did a great job of ensuring that I got some experience in many areas to find what type of work I enjoyed most. I helped with roadway resurfacing projects, a pump station replacement, asset management, MS4 permit compliance, and construction inspection, among others. Working on so many different projects helped to keep the summer fresh and exciting, and getting exposure to so much helped me learn a ton about new topics, technologies, analysis methods, and project development.
- I was able to go to a Maine airfield to do a drone training day. Hoyle, Tanner has implemented drone surveys for projects and has invested in staff getting drone pilot licenses. We laid out ground control points across the site, and flew the drone both by hand and by using flight planning applications. It was a lot of fun to go out and fly the drones, and I really liked that the company seemed to see their potential in future work and was willing to invest in the emerging technology.
- During my summer here I had the opportunity to spend some time doing construction inspections while our normal Resident Project Representative (RPR) was on vacation. I got a ton of working knowledge by going out in the field and watching things actually be built. I was able to see paving, excavation, grading, compacting, placing curbs and headwalls, and laying conduit. Seeing the other side of these projects definitely helped give me a better understanding of the practicality of engineering designs in the field, and the RPR role in assuring everything goes smoothly.
- While at Hoyle, Tanner I was able to work on a couple of projects requiring sewer modeling, for which I learned to use SewerCAD. I had previously used EPANet, a similar program, but SewerCAD has much higher functionality. This was one of my favorite tasks from my whole internship – I was able to apply hydraulic concepts learned in the classroom and manipulate useful software to solve a complicated problem. It was very rewarding to familiarize myself with a new program, build an accurate hydraulic model of a real-world piping network, and successfully simulate flow scenarios to assess the system performance.
I really enjoyed working with Hoyle, Tanner this summer. I gained a ton of knowledge and experience, and have nothing but good things to say about everyone I worked alongside. Hoyle, Tanner did a great job of integrating me into the team and making me feel like a real engineer, rather than just a temporary employee. I look forward to continuing my work with Hoyle, Tanner throughout this school year, and entering the real world far more prepared for a career in engineering.