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Daniel Anderson (June 2003 - December 2003)

Name: Daniel Anderson

School: University of Missouri-Rolla

Major: Computer Engineering

Co-op period: January 2003 – August 2003

Current school/company and what you do:
I am employed full time at Cerner, Corporation as a System Engineer. Cerner is the leading supplier of information technology solutions to the healthcare industry.

Current Location:
Kansas City, MO

What was the interview process like?

I submitted my resume at the fall Career Fair and then did an on-campus interview with HR. Then I went to St. Louis for a follow-up interview with the EE Co-op Supervisor and took a test.

What did you do?

I was given the opportunity to work on leading-edge technologies and apply them to the automotive industry.

I teamed with two other co-ops to design and develop all aspects of a hand held measurement tool. We selected and coded the microcontroller, laid out the physical prototype, and implemented a split-packet protocol for data transmission.

We also evaluated the feasibility of various automated testing software packages for Hunter.

I was given the individual project of writing PC driver .inf and co-installer .dll files for a multiple-instance USB 2.0 device driver.

On a daily basis, I worked closely with the Director of Quality Assurance, testing hardware and software and identifying bugs

Would you do it again?
Yes! In fact, I personally recommended the Hunter EE co-op to several friends who ended up taking the job after me.

What did you like?

The challenging work allowed me to apply what I had learned in class to real-world job experiences.

Hunter Engineering is the leader of its industry. Instead of sitting still and taking advantage of its established customer base, Hunter always strives to create innovative new products for the market. Research and development are key to the company's success. I loved working in this environment. It meant a lot to me to have pride in my work and to know I was making a contribution.

By far, the best part about working for Hunter are the people. My coworkers became lifelong friends. Hunter is a fun working environment and I honestly looked forward to going to work each day. Everyone is an expert at what they do. Many became my mentors and instilled in me a desire to become successful at whatever I do. I still rely on my friends at Hunter for solid advice in my life.

What did you not like?
Going back to school after my co-op ended! I can't really think of anything specifically.

Did you learn anything?
I learned many things at Hunter, some technical and some non-technical. Besides learning some new technical things regarding hardware and software, the most impact came from the non-technical learning experience I received. I learned how work was conducted in a professional setting and how information, new and old, was organized and disseminated throughout the company. Being able to actually work with other engineers was a great experience, one much different than working on homework with a colleague.

What was the dress code?
The dress code for co-ops was business casual when I worked for Hunter. The engineers dressed professionally. One thing I thought was neat was that everyone dressed business casual during the Cardinal's baseball season.

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

My work at Hunter was split evenly between individual and group work, which is very comparable to my current job as a system engineer. The collaborative skills I learned while on co-op are vital to a successful career in engineering and business.

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

St. Louis is simply great. It has so much to offer and do. Compared to my rural hometown ( Trenton, MO), current location ( Kansas City, MO), and last residence ( Huntsville, AL), St. Louis is better by far. There was a lot of city pride and a comfortable attitude that I haven't experienced anywhere else I've lived.

The Forest Park area of St. Louis contains a zoo, botanical garden, science center, art museum, golf course, and outdoor theater. It's nice having so many things to do in one centralized location.

I also found St. Louis has a great night life. :-)

What were your living arrangements during co-op?
I lived in Florissant, MO (5 miles north of Hunter) with a college fraternity brother.

How was the supervision?
Dave Voeller always showed confidence in my problem solving abilities and was a great source of knowledge whenever I had questions or problems. His down-to-earth management style and established technical knowledge made him an ideal supervisor.

Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself?
My co-op experience at Hunter helped me get a summer internship with Dynetics, Inc. in Huntsville, Alabama. Also, working at Hunter really motivated me to finish my undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering when I got back to school.