Internships are a valuable way for students to implement the new skills they learn in class to real-world settings to solve industry problems. Industrial engineering senior Jake Egan is a prime example of diving in and taking advantage of multiple internship opportunities throughout his college career.
“I’ve had four summer internships and jobs since beginning at MSOE,” said Egan, a Waterford, Wisconsin native who transferred to MSOE from a school in rural Iowa.
In summer 2018, Egan had his first internship at Mayville Engineering Company where he assisted with repairs of manufacturing equipment. He then served as a process engineer for Agricycle Global in summer 2019, performed contract negotiation analysis and data analysis on shipping trends for FedEx Ground Corporate Office in summer 2020, and in spring 2021 he performed process improvements and provided CAD drawing support as a manufacturing engineer intern at Steel Craft Corp. He will continue to work at Steel Craft as a manufacturing engineer after he graduates this May with a B.S. in Industrial Engineering and a minor in business administration.
Not only did these internships allow Egan to apply what he learned in class and sharpen his skills, they also helped him find his niche. “I started as an architectural engineering student my first year at MSOE. After learning about industrial engineering and spending a summer working in a sheet metal fabrication factory, I fell in love with industrial engineering.”
MSOE’s fast paced curriculum provided him with the skillsets and tools he needed to succeed in his jobs. “MSOE taught me the crucial skill of learning and how to learn fast,” said Egan. “The intense curriculum and extensive projects and group work also equipped me to not only learn important and abstract academic concepts, but also learn the leadership and teamwork skills that cannot be learned in lecture halls.”
On campus, Egan is involved in the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE), MSOE FIRST Ambassadors and the MSOE Flight Club. Outside of school and work, Egan can be found volunteering as a judge at FIRST Tech Challenge competitions, spending time with family working on handyman projects, or boating out on the water.
Egan is grateful for MSOE’s small school atmosphere that allowed him to interact with his professors and form close relationships with them. “I still remember missing a class or two and being pulled aside by a professor asking if everything was okay because missing a class was unlike me. Where else can you get professors that know you that well!”
Egan emphasized the importance of checking in with students and checking in with your own mental health and wellbeing. “My biggest challenge in my college career was balancing intense (sometimes brutal) academic rigor, work and my mental health. However, by educating myself on my entire self, getting help when needed, not letting mental health struggles define me and developing a conquering plan, I was able to conquer my struggles and be successful.”
For those struggling with mental health, Egan encourages you to “Make a plan, get help and conquer your issues! Keep pressing, you got this!”
For more information on conquering your mental health and wellness, visit msoe.edu/wellness-center.