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Jarad Starman (June 2001 - December 2001)

Name: Jared Starman

School: Washington University in St. Louis

Major: Electrical Engineering

Co-op period: June 2001 - December 2001

Current school/company and what you do:
Currently I'm in my 3rd year of grad school (2nd year of PhD program in Electrical Engineering)

Current Location:
Stanford University, Palo Alto, California

What was the interview process like?

The interview process was pretty similar to some of the other companies that I interviewed with. One of the biggest selling points of Hunter for me actually was the website. I was really surprised by the amount of technical and electronic work that happened at Hunter. It seemed compared to other similar companies that Hunter had a bigger emphasis on research and development.

What did you do?
I mainly worked on a hand-held measurement tool, but I got to play around with a couple of other small projects. Along with the previous co-op Caleb, we experimented with using voice commands to run the Hunter Software. I also spent some time trouble-shooting returned DC power supplies for the balancers. That actually turned out to be fairly interesting, and introduced me to a type of electronics (power electronics) that was new to me.

Would you do it again?
I'm really glad that I co-op'ed, and I think it's something all engineers would benefit from doing once.

What did you like?
I liked getting exposure to working at a company, as opposed to taking classes all day. Working for several months really gave me time to get involved with the hand-held measurement tool project, and Hunter in general. Summer internships are just too short to really get the feel of what working is like.

What did you not like?
I wish I had been immersed even more in Hunter corporate culture. I get the sense that the co-ops were shielded and kept separate from a lot of the other stuff going on, so I think it would have been beneficial to see more.

Did you learn anything?
I learned a lot! I learned assembly programming from scratch, and the architectures of a couple different micro-controllers. Plus, I got a lot of experience in actually doing electronics projects that school didn't offer. In my 4 years of undergrad, the only place I ever wire-wrapped anything was at Hunter. Every electrical engineer should know how to do that!

Did the experience help you in your career?
Yes! The experience gave me a good perspective on what to expect.

Did it help you in any job interviews?
Absolutely! The experience from Hunter and the projects I worked on gave me a lot to talk about during interviews at other companies. I think that really helped me stand out from other candidates and get job offers.

What was the dress code?
Dress code was ok. I wore business casual as intern.

Was the work more individual or group work and how does it compare with what
you are doing today?

During the summer overlap with the previous intern Caleb, the work was mainly group-work. That gave me a lot of experience in working with a partner, which was extremely valuable. Afterwards, I worked mostly alone, but when I had questions or concerns I learned how to interact with others and get the information that I needed.

What are the pros/cons of working in Saint Louis? (Maybe compare it to where you
are now)

St. Louis was great to live in. So much cheaper than the Bay Area in California !

What were your living arrangements during co-op?
I lived in my apartment near WashU, so the arrangements were great. All the advantages of living at school, but with the 8:15-5:00 job.

How was the supervision?
Dave was by far the best supervisor I've ever had. I always felt like I could go and ask him questions, or approach him about any subject at work. Plus, if he didn't know the answer to a question, he would send me to someone who did. Finally, I could tell that he was really looking out for my best interests, which really helps morale.

Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself?
Since my co-op experience at Hunter I've done micro-processor design at Intel (offered full-time position) and robotics research at NASA (experience at Hunter really helped here).