This summer Dewberry welcomed more than 100 student interns to 20 different offices across the country. As many of them wrap up their time here and head back to school, we asked interns from different departments to reflect on their experiences over the last couple of months.

What was the most exciting thing you worked on during your internship?

Karen Staskin, Virginia Tech, Architecture, Fairfax, Virginia

A renovation for a private sector client. It was great to work on because I joined during the beginning of design development, and we were preparing the documents for permit submittal. There was a lot of work to do, and we had to pull some late nights, but it was wonderful to see a set of drawings develop so much in such a short period of time. We also had to coordinate with other disciplines, and it was interesting to see all of the drawing sets come together.

Jordan Lewis, Washington University in St. Louis, Transportation, Baltimore, Maryland

My most exciting assignment was using an addition on MicroStation called AutoTURN to simulate moving a freight truck through a tight intersection. It was fun to play with different variables (curve radius, speed, etc.) to find a solution to the problem.

Emma Clement, Carnegie Mellon, Water Resources, Fairfax, Virginia

I found learning to use five new computer programs for stormwater management to be super exciting! I learned how to use the programs Microstation, Pond Pack, StormCAD, Flow Master, and ProjectWise. I used them to design stormwater management projects I worked on this summer. Each project requires a different combination of these software programs for analysis and design.

What was the biggest lesson you learned this summer?

Olivia Doherty, Virginia Tech, Communications, Fairfax, Virginia

I had multiple large takeaways from my experience this summer. First–it can be intimidating being "just an intern" and feeling like you shouldn't share your ideas or ask too many questions, but that's not the case and sharing your input will benefit everyone. Second–it's crucial to say yes to every opportunity presented to you. I was able to connect with a lot of really great people from across the company this summer, which I wouldn't have been able to do if I hadn't opened myself up to those opportunities.

Matt Carr, University of Illinois, Mechanical Engineering, Peoria, Illinois

I learned the importance of advanced planning in the initial phases of a project. In HVAC, strategically selecting air handling unit and chase locations can resolve a lot of problems with duct routing that will appear later in the project.

What was your favorite part of your experience overall?

Kenneth Perando, Virginia Tech, Transportation, Fairfax, Virginia

I enjoyed and appreciated the experience of working in a professional work environment and being assigned meaningful tasks. It was exhilarating learning about and being able to make contributions, both small and large, to major infrastructure projects in the area.

Jessica DeCelie, Virginia Tech, Water Resources, Bloomfield, New Jersey

I really enjoyed helping getting projects started, like gathering the information and starting permits, because it showed me how the process usually works. I think that is a skill that I would not have learned in school and will be very useful in my future career.

What advice would you have for future interns?

Jack Timothy, North Carolina State University, Healthcare MEP, Raleigh, North Carolina

Don't be afraid to ask questions! The full-time employees I have worked with have been wonderful at explaining things and helping me understand new concepts. Even though I am still inexperienced and unable to contribute as much as a full-time employee can, I have gained a solid understanding of what it would be like to work in this industry after college, which I think is the main purpose of an internship like this one.

John Dampier, University of South Florida, Architecture, Fairfax, Virginia

Take every opportunity available, don't be afraid to ask questions, and be confident in your abilities.

  • Karen Staskin
    Karen Staskin
  • Jordan Lewis
    Jordan Lewis
  • Emma Clement
    Emma Clement
  • Olivia Doherty
    Olivia Doherty
  • Matt Carr
    Matt Carr
  • Kenneth Perando
    Kenneth Perando
  • Jessica DeCelie
    Jessica DeCelie
  • Jack Timothy
    Jack Timothy
  • Jack Dampier
    Jack Dampier
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