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Jesse Cross (June 2008 - January 2009)

Name: Jesse Cross

School: Missouri University of Science and Technology (University of Missouri-Rolla)

Major: Electrical Engineering

Co-op period: June 2008 - January 2009

Current school/company and what you do:
I am an Electrical Engineering student at MST and will have four semesters left after my co-op at Hunter.

Current Location:
St. Louis.  I will leave for Rolla right after my co-op at Hunter is finished.

What was the interview process like?

I received a phone call from Patrick Hutsler asking if I would be interested in an interview, since they found my resume after searching through the Rolla Career Center’s database.  During the interview, I spoke with Patrick Hutsler, took an aptitude test, and then spoke with Dave Voeller.  Afterward, I was offered the position.

What did you do?
I worked on several projects.  There were three that I enjoyed the most.  The first was creating a Labview program that analyzed how the wheel alignment sensors were using bus communication.  The second was writing a test program for quality control on a Hunter product.  This test program gives the final inspector a step by step walk through of the quality control procedure and records the results electronically.  The third was a firmware uploader for another Hunter product.

Would you do it again?

What did you like?
I liked that my projects were actually used by Hunter.  It did not feel like I was wasting my time or Hunter’s time with some menial busywork.  My firmware uploader and quality control program are used on real Hunter products.  Some engineers were actually able to use my bus analyzer to help with some problems while I was there.  It was nice that I had some impact while I was learning stuff I will be able to use later.

What did you not like?
It would have been nice to have paid holidays.  I did not mind the business casual attire, but some people might.  At least I did not have a wear a tie, like all of the other employees.

Did you learn anything?
I have learned many things.  I have learned to program in Labview and have learned how to program two different microcontrollers in C.  I also learned some of the social impacts of working in an engineering company, so I am sure I will not do anything stupid during my first day of my first job out of college.

Did the experience help you in your career?
This experience confirmed that I would indeed like to be an electrical engineer.  I would hate to have gotten a job straight out of college and realize that I did not want to be an electrical engineer.

Did it help you in any job interviews?
I have not had any interviews, since the one for Hunter.  But, I am sure it will help me during my next interview.

What was the dress code?
The dress code is business casual.  This means collared shirts and khaki pants.

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

Most of the work was individual.  I did work with other co-ops on a few projects in the first few months, but they all left during the fall semester.  The engineers were always available if I needed help, though.

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

I live in St. Louis, so it was not an adjustment at all.  I already knew the area.  Hunter is across the street from the airport, however the planes were not bad at all.

What were your living arrangements during co-op?
I lived at home during my co-op.  The commute was a pain, though.  I lived over ten miles away and the only quick path to Hunter was a busy highway.  Ten miles is a lot when it takes you about an hour to get home.  I would recommend finding an apartment that is close to Hunter

How was the supervision?
Dave stayed up to date with what I was doing.  He would check in every few days to make sure I was not stuck.  There is a list of tasks that is in Outlook.  I was expected to write my progress with a particular task in this list.  If I had not written to it in a while, Dave would email and ask that I update it.  This list let Dave see my progress without constantly looking over my shoulder.

Anything else you'd like to tell us about yourself?
I enjoyed working at Hunter.  I sought out a co-op since I needed a break from school.  Also, at 20 years old, I really needed to get a car and I would not have been able to pay for one with just a summer job.