A Summer of Learning 4 Kleinschmidt interns share their experiences

For more than 50 years, Kleinschmidt has provided engineering, regulatory, and environmental consulting services to energy companies and government agencies across North America. We were pleased to host several interns with us for the summer of 2019 to learn more about our business and to help them as they pursue their various career paths.

Meet Sebastian Ferraro. Sebastian recently graduated from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering.

"This summer I had the pleasure of working with Kleinschmidt as an H&H intern out of the Portland, Oregon office. I knew that I wanted to work in water resources, potentially around stream restoration and with hydraulic modeling. Until I started working here, I had no idea what that truly meant."

"I have learned so much about the hydro world in my time here, starting with the information Ben Cary began sharing with me on day one. Ben was my main source of support throughout my internship. He took me under his wing and mentored me, while giving me opportunities to learn and integrating me with project work. Even tedious tasks such as going through construction documents provided valuable learning experiences. I also had the opportunity to work with Chris Goodell, which was a dream come true. It is not often that you get the opportunity to work alongside of someone so professionally acclaimed for their technical abilities like Chris is with HEC-RAS. I was lucky to have the opportunity to soak up as much information and technique for hydraulic modeling as possible while working with him."

"My favorite project this summer was a small dam breach analysis in Washington. When I started the summer, I frankly had no idea what a dam breach analysis was. Within my first week at Kleinschmidt that had completely changed and by mid-way through the summer I was assigned to a small dam breech project. One of my goals for the summer was to complete a hydraulic model from scratch on my own and I was given the opportunity to do just that. Working closely with Chris, I have been working on constructing the hydraulic model. I had to search for and find the necessary data needed for the model, implement the dam structure, terrain and flow information into the model, and I even was able to visit the site. When looking at large scale terrain data and imagery it is easy to lose site of the scale of a project and visiting the site and visually seeing the project was extremely helpful in guiding the modeling process."

"Another project that I was able to go on a site visit for was for a fish passage project. Not only was this an extremely cool site to see, I was able to become part of the team that was providing solutions for the sediment blockage problem the client was having. Part of this process included speaking with manufacturers and communicating with the client in order to come up with different solutions and providing preliminary design solutions."

"Beyond all the technical skills and development I received in my time here, perhaps even more importantly I learned that Kleinschmidt is a warm, welcoming, and fun company. Since the moment I met Glen DeWillie, Jennifer Jones, Chris, and Ben in my interview back in May, I felt welcomed and appreciated. My favorite memory from this summer internship was being able to experience Hydro Vision 2019 in Portland. One of the days after the conference Finlay Anderson had organized a “happy hour” for all those in the company who were visiting to check out the Portland office and socialize. Everyone showed up and started playing cornhole, joking around, and just having a great time. Jon Christensen, the CEO, encouraged me to join in. Little did he know that I was going to join forces with Russ Sanford, the CMO, and dethrone him in cornhole. I was able to meet people from different locations and levels within the company. There are not many companies where you would have the opportunity to meet your CEO, let alone play cornhole against him on a Wednesday night. Though I could talk forever about my experience here at Kleinschmidt, I will finish by saying that working at Kleinschmidt has been a wonderful and gratifying experience, and I can never put into words how thankful I am for the opportunity to work with such a great company."

Practical Solutions for Complex Problems Affecting Energy, Water and the Environment.

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Created By
GinaRenee Autrey

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