Degree: BS Ecological Engineering
Graduation Year: 2013
STG Incorporated - I am currently a field engineer for a company that builds foundations and towers in remote locations around Alaska. They have built multiple wind farms in villages that are only accessible by plane. It is my job to oversee/report on daily activities and help wherever I can. When I'm lucky, they let me climb the towers and help the tower guys put 1000 pound pieces together while 200 feet in the air.
How did OSU prepare you for your job?:
OSU, specifically the Senior Design class, taught me how to write professional reports that are clear and concise. It is important for this company to be able to record daily activities for the client because it isn't always feasible to have the client visit the site to check up on progress
In addition, information learned while in the BEE department has given me a true appreciation for the pristine environments I am working with in bush Alaska. The broad knowledge I obtained through the department and the involvement with other majors has allowed me to learn new skills quickly and relate to coworkers in other disciplines.
Advice to current students:
The first piece of advice I would give current students is to make connections and gain experience in the field you are striving towards. When I first started applying, I realized I lacked relevant experience for most entry level jobs that "strongly prefer one year of experience". Also, when applying to a small company, knowing someone who works for the company is invaluable.
In addition, having the ability to preform calculations without a calculator is a necessary skill for those who desire to work in the field. When problems arise in the field, you need to be ready to bust out some calculations quickly when you likely won't have a calculator. It is also very helpful in making a last minute check of things.
My last bit of advice would be to be open to opportunities outside of your comfort zone. Don't limit yourself to a single skill. Look for different internships every summer and experiment with a variety of jobs until you find one you love. Despite what pessimists may say, there are numerous jobs out there awaiting to be filled if you are willing to seek an adventure.