Image License: Creative Commons 3 - CC BY-SA 3.0 Creator: NY - http://nyphotographic.com/
At KFW, we believe strong internship programs are essential to the success of our business. From diving into AutoCAD Civil 3D, learning design, to filling hundreds of water balloons for our annual team building event (at KFW, we also believe every event should include enough water balloons to supply an army of engineers), our interns are constantly learning new things and contributing to our success.
Steven Krauskopf, Managing Partner, co-founded KFW with the goal of creating a workplace where employees never felt they had to leave for better opportunities, and many careers at KFW have started with an internship in our Residential and Commercial Departments.
“I love the people here—everyone has been extremely friendly. The icing on the cake would be ice cream afternoons and taco mornings at KFW! – Jian Lei, Intern.
Chris Garza, now a valued EIT, started as an intern and joined KFW full time upon graduation. He explained some of the goals set for interns, “We hope that an intern becomes familiar with different aspects and processes in the land development field, including basic design, codes based on the Unified Development Code, and AutoCAD skills. These are the basics of land development that will carry over into the next phase of their careers.”
Our current intern mentors developed a program consisting of 5 factors for a successful internship that are taught and built upon during the tenure of an internship:
- Time Management
These skills are strengthened through one-on-one mentorship with an EIT. Omar Espinosa, EIT, gave insight on strong intern candidate qualities, “We look for interns with a good attitude, willingness to learn, strong communication skills, and the ability to adapt to a fast-paced work environment.”
“I knew since high school that I wanted to get into a career that involves math and computers. During high school, my favorite subject was math and my favorite class was Civil Engineering and Architecture. My engineering teacher made the class fun and made civil engineering enjoyable to learn. - Nick Panella, Intern
Internships are key to any career discipline because they provide insight into real world work environments and scenarios. In this field, it gives an intern the opportunity to learn from EITs and Professional Engineers that have many years of experience in the land development industry. Upon graduation, an intern is more capable of going into in-depth design and well on his or her way to becoming a Professional Engineer.
Intern Exclusive with Dru Zella
1. Why did you choose to intern at KFW?
A well respected professor at UTSA informed me about the solid background KFW had and the internship position they were offering at the time. After meeting with a couple of the Principals in my interview, I knew this was a place I would enjoy working.
2. Describe a typical day as a KFW intern?
Tasks may consist of anything from updating AutoCAD drawings to working on various types of reports. I enjoy being an intern because a typical day consists of varying assignments, which keep the work day flowing. As an intern you go into work and never know what you could be working on; you learn something new every day.
3. What is your favorite thing about working here?
Taco Tuesday, the ice cream in the afternoons to celebrate birthdays/anniversaries, and the unlimited coffee anytime throughout the work day. Haha! All joking aside my favorite thing about working at KFW would be the relaxed and enjoyable working environment that the people here have created. Here at KFW, I feel very fortunate to have coworkers that are always willing to take time to help and explain different aspects of the daily work that goes on here.
4. Why are you pursuing a civil engineering degree?
I was strong in math throughout high school so I knew I wanted to pursue an engineering degree in college. It wasn’t until my sophomore year in college that I really began to have a strong interest in civil engineering.
Learning about material properties in my college courses really intrigued me, and I began to acquire respect for all the time and effort that goes into the design process throughout all the fields of civil engineering. Driving around town, observing all the buildings, highways, and developments and realizing how everything built around us was at one point calculated and designed excites me.
5. What do you enjoy doing outside of work and school?
I enjoy paddle-boarding, kayaking, wakeboarding, and fishing. My family and I love to float down the Frio River (whether there is enough water or not), and we take at least one trip every summer. I enjoy pretty much about anything that deals with being out on the water; there’s just nothing like it.
No matter what title is given, we’re all a part of the same KFW family. We’re grateful to have our current interns and look forward to their futures here at KFW.