For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been a huge Disney fan. It mesmerizes me the way they are able to create real magic with the use of cutting edge technology. Disney has always been ahead of the game when it comes to using new applications of electrical engineering and lighting, which in turn become the new normal. It gradually changed from being something I loved as a child to a my ultimate dream job. Everything in my life helps me get closer to achieving that goal by gaining knowledge through the experiences I have. I’ve learned the most by trial and error in many aspects at home, from school, and through my internship with PK Electrical. The first introduction I had to electrical engineering of sorts was at home.
My dad was the one who sparked my interest in electrical circuits. I had taken a class in middle school but didn’t really think much of it at the time. My dad and I created an old video game console using a Raspberry Pi and all the old controls. We worked to figure out the different wires and the hookups by following vague instructions online. It was so cool how we were able to create this electric replica of old school games in our house. Another thing my dad and I worked on were 6-foot singing pumpkin faces made out of rope light. I figured out how to use the Xlights and Papagayo lip sync software to correctly turn on the specific rope light that correlated to the words in the song. This required a lot of trial and error because neither of us had used this software before. He was always encouraging me and would gift me starter kits to get an idea of some things I would potentially encounter in my career. Majoring in electrical engineering in college provided the bulk of my theoretical knowledge and am now getting to apply it in real world situations.
From my very first semester in college, I was thrown into the engineering curriculum. I started my program at the beginning of the COVID pandemic, so the learning style was much different than what I was accustomed to, and I saw so many of my classmates drop out in the first couple weeks. I was introduced to binary and Boolean algebra. From there I had at least one electrical engineering class each semester. I learned Java and Assembly language as well as Arduino and Tiva boards. I learned skills I know I will need to have in engineering such as using an oscilloscope and multimeter. I am also building knowledge on how the different electrical components work and operate like diodes, mosfets, BJTs and inductors. I may not be quizzed on how any one of these works specifically in a job, but I will need to have that knowledge to know how to improve circuits and chips using these components. I recently finished my junior year in college which was filled with electrical engineering courses. I was taught circuit design, signals and systems, and electromagnetics. These were the three major roads that you can take electrical engineering after college. It was also the first time we had seen the signals and systems and electromagnetic concentrations. After taking these classes I have more confidence in my abilities to succeed in the professional world. Getting an internship with PK Electrical also helps me get a better understanding of the professional design world of electrical engineering.
In junior year the thing that everyone worries about the most is finding an internship. For the longest time I was always intimidated by the internships and worrying about letting the firm down. When I found PK Electrical, I did some research and discovered their About Us Page. Upon learning that it was a woman owned company, I had an immediate connection. There aren’t too many women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) in general, but especially in engineering. Knowing that a woman was President, CEO, and Founder of the company, I had a good feeling that it was a great place to work. Upon starting I was immediately welcomed to the team. My coworkers are so friendly and supportive. I know that whenever I have a question, I can go to anyone around me for help. They didn’t expect me to come in being an engineering wizard, which was one of my fears. Right from day one I was taught how to use new programs and software that I had never seen before. I was also taken on a trip to one of the projects that PK is working on, and it was only my second day. It was so cool being able to see how the engineering field operates. And with engineering it can go in so many different directions after you leave college. So, working with PK and getting a robust hands on experience is pivotal in helping me figure out which route to go. I get to see every aspect of a project from the beginning sourcing solicitations for projects all the way through their completion. I didn’t even know that drafting was an option after college and it’s something that really interests me. This is probably the most helpful information I can gain to help me try and achieve my goal. Nothing beats real world experiences and having a history of working in the field.
In conclusion I’ve learned a lot of things from school and life and especially PK. I’ve learned that it’s ok to fail and take chances. If I hadn’t taken the chance, I wouldn’t have been able to get this amazing opportunity of interning with PK Electrical. I hope that I can use everything I’ve learned up till now and much more that I’ll learn from interning with PK electrical in my career later in life. Whether that be with another company or, hopefully, Disney, it will all have been worth it.