Southland focuses a lot of time and effort on making its internship and co-op program one of the best in the country. As I am currently completing my second rotation as a co-op student, I can personally say it has been a great experience.
The environment at Southland is incredible. The Mid-Atlantic Division’s office is full of intelligent, driven people that all remarkably get along and work well together. I have never seen a group of people who so inherently understand we are a team, and that one person cannot be successful if everyone does not work to achieve success together. In fact, it is that very reason that everyone at Southland is willing to stop what they are doing to sit down and explain something to interns and co-ops, or help with a problem we cannot quite figure out. It is also why Southland encourages students to figure out where it is we each belong in the company—where our “seat on the bus” is, so to say.
During my first rotation, I worked as a design engineer. Some of my typical tasks were ventilation calculations, static pressure calculations, duct and pipe sizing, and modeling in 3D building information modeling software. Now in my second rotation, I am working as an industrial engineer to investigate how information flows from design to construction and how to improve our workflow. When my current project is completed, I will have the opportunity to spend a few weeks in business development, helping to put proposals together and realizing how we win jobs. For my next rotation, I have the option to go back to design or try my hand at project management. One of the most important things I have learned is: If there is something out there that you want to explore, Southland will help you do it.
Southland projects are technically complex and exciting—the kinds of projects that every engineer wants to work on during his or her career. During my first rotation, I got to work on one of the biggest data centers in the country. Other interns are getting to work in hospitals, data centers, and research facilities, and one intern is lucky enough to be working on a Smithsonian Museum in downtown Washington, DC.
Even after hours of work, Southland does a great job of keeping interns engaged. A few of our intern events included a camping trip at an employee’s farm complete with kickball and dodgeball, a few Nationals baseball games, a cookout and pool party hosted by the division leader, and a big scavenger hunt take spanned most of the DC metro area. Whether it is at the office or after hours, Southland interns and co-op students have plenty of chances to explore new opportunities.