Our interns have been hard at work this summer, gaining valuable experience in their fields of study. Before he trades in his hard hat for a backpack, we asked Alex Bartelt, a project management intern at our Neenah office, to tell us about his Miron internship experience.
What have you learned this summer? Is there something about the construction industry that you didn’t know before?
Since my last blog post, I have had the privilege of working on an active project site. There, I have been able to apply my knowledge firsthand, as well as learn new things daily through my insider’s view of the obstacles and challenges that can occur on a project. Of all the different concepts and lessons that I have learned this summer, I would say the biggest lesson has been that you will face many challenges on a project site—especially a large-scale project site. Helping to work through these obstacles has given me insight into how to prioritize and handle challenges efficiently in order to keep the project moving forward and on schedule.
What has been your favorite part of your internship?
My favorite part about this summer’s internship has been the opportunity to spend my days on the jobsite. Every day I am able to collaborate with many different contractors, field workers, Owners, and architects. This has been a stepping stone in the progression of my communication skills.
What has been the hardest part of your internship?
One of the more difficult aspects of this internship for me was realizing how limited my knowledge was when I first started. While I understood the basic concepts of commercial construction, the detailed knowledge wasn’t quite there yet. There were times I found it a bit frustrating to not know the answer to some of the subcontractors’ questions. Although it was difficult, I soon realized I was fortunate to have these experiences because I was able to grow my knowledge base in the process of finding the answers to these questions.
Has your take on the construction industry or your career goals changed since you started your internship?
Since starting my time with Miron earlier this summer, my career goals have remained the same, though they have become clearer to me. I have found that I get a sense of satisfaction from helping coordinate multiple crews that are working on different things in order to reach the same goal together—to safely construct a quality structure and leave our client satisfied. That said, my goals haven’t changed, but I have become more driven than ever to one day be able to efficiently manage a project site.
What advice would you give other students considering a similar internship?
If I were to give an incoming intern a piece of advice, I would keep it broad and tell them to keep an open mind. This not only allows you to learn from others on the project team, but also gives you the ability to brainstorm alternate solutions that may work better for a specific task. I have found that having an open mind is key when learning about the industry, and everyone in the industry is learning new things every day.
Is there anything else you’d like to share about your experience?
It has been a privilege to work with the Miron team this summer. I have been able to grow intellectually on both a personal and professional level.