• Tristan Simoes-Ponce (Mechanical Engineering)Where did you intern? 

I interned at Savannah River National Laboratory which is located in Aiken, South Carolina.

  • How did you get your internship? 

I got my internship thru the DOE Fellows Program at the Applied Research Center at FIU.

  • What did you do there? What projects did you work on? 

I did mechanical testing on the polyurethane foams that SRNL is interested in deploying in radioactive environments such as a hot cell. I did dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), tensile testing, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) testing and analysis.

  • What was the coolest thing about your internship or that happened during your internship?

The coolest thing was working at a national lab and being exposed to work being performed by Ph.D.’s and seasoned professionals.

  • What advice do you have for those beginning the internship process? 

To always ask for work and be as helpful as possible and to go the extra mile.

  • What did you like most about your experience?

The coworkers and mentors I was assigned to were really helpful and nice to me.

  • What did you learn about yourself? 

I learned that I am independent since I had to reach out to a variety of people and conducted most of the research and lab work by myself.

  • How did the position increase your professional confidence? 

I feel like I have a better understanding of how to operate in a professional workplace environment and what is expected from me.


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