Sedron Technologies

Mechanical Engineering Intern

June - August 2020 • Sedro-Woolley, WA

What I liked

Great mentor, fun co-workers, good managers, a younger startup culture vibe but at the same time connected with a larger and more established organization that provided momentum and resources (Janicki Industries). The project focus on energy production, combustion, and power systems was an excellent way to spend the summer after taking a thermodynamics class at UVM the previous spring. Also an inspiring mission; providing solutions for cleaner and more sustainable hygiene and waste-water treatment while turning those "wastes" into valuable electricity and clean water for communities in developing countries. Co-workers were engaging and happy to discuss what projects they were working on in both high-level and in nitty-gritty technical details. Mentor was very present, responsive, and supportive. Managers provided good direction and support for the team.

What I wish was different

When I arrived, the main project of the company was in constructing their second iteration of the Omniprocessor powerplant. The time period during-which my internship took place was when this system had already been constructed for the most part, and was now in the stage of debugging, documentation, and preparation for delivery. If I could change something it would have been to have experienced working at Sedron during the time when the machine was still being initially designed and constructed where I could have had more direct input and projects based in the more exciting phase of researching and development. The plus-side of coming in later in the project was in getting to see a completed and functioning system, hearing about what had worked and what hadn't throughout the whole process.


Talk with your coworkers about what they're working on find what they're excited/challenged/passionate about in the project, take in their experience and try to see the bigger picture of how it all fits together. Reach out to fellow interns and new hires especially to make closer connections. While I was at Sedron I started inviting some of the younger or newer folks out to check out the farmers-market or get takeout together, which later led to game-nights and other adventures that made for really satisfying and fun connections both in and outside of work. Don't be afraid to suggest when something could be done better or a new tool implemented. While I was there I noticed that the process for reviewing new designs seemed to take up a lot more time from the front-level engineers than was necessary. After the first month I found new ways of quickly and effectively presenting ideas, or checking in with peers or supervisors during the design process in order to avoid a lot of excess work or dead-ends. Also implemented the use of OneNote in combination with my personal tablet in work projects, and this allowed me to much more effectively take notes, document equipment, and sketch up concepts to share with my mentor and co-workers. After I started making use of this my mentor was so impressed with how much more effective the tablet made my work that she started looking into using one herself.
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