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Nov 25, 2013
Seagate has the best talent in the industry, working together to deliver amazing storage products. But even with all of our considerable resources, we still need fresh ideas and new ways of looking at problems.
Our student internship program ensures that we never stop innovating and moving forward as a company.
This program offers a ton of benefits—for the students, their managers and teams, and for our company as a whole. Here’s what some of our managers and our recent student interns had to say about the program and their experiences.
“New Tools and Ideas”
“In the tech world, things are always changing fast and college interns bring new tools and ideas to Seagate,” said Cary Johnson, a principal engineer, failure analysis, in Shakopee. “They don’t always prescribe to the ‘that’s the way we’ve always done it’ approach.”
Cary worked with David Pitchford, an intern on assignment at Seagate in the summer of 2011. David worked on a series of software-development projects that were key parts of our strategic drive data-analysis process. “David did a great job,” Cary said, “and his primary project, which was designed to process large volumes of field-return data, is still a critical tool that’s heavily used today.”
David is now a fulltime employee, working for Cary as an enterprise development engineer.
“Interns can bring a different mindset from those of us who’ve been at Seagate or in this industry for a long time,” added Glenn Benson, senior engineering director, mechanical design, also in Shakopee.
Glenn and his team worked with student Logan Magnan this past summer. Logan helped Glenn’s department set up new mechanical test equipment—work that included writing test scripts and conducting correlation studies between the older equipment and the new tester.
“Logan’s work allowed his engineering supervisor to focus on product-development issues while the new tester was being prepared,” said Glenn. “During the three months Logan was with us, his work resulted in saving about 12 months of direct time by his supervising engineer.”
Glenn makes it a practice to involve any intern on his team in meetings and work discussions that will give the students a better understanding of the business needs that “motivate our assignments and work items,” he explained. “The formal intern program meetings also give them the opportunity to see what other group functions do, and how they fit into the overall business.”
Inside Track on Hiring
Another benefit of the internship program: Seagate often has an inside track when it comes to hiring a student intern after graduation.
“Having seen first-hand an intern’s capabilities, it gives us the confidence in making an offer when the intern graduates,” said Abhay Kataria, a managing principal engineer, R&D firmware, in Longmont.
One such intern is Ryan Caskey, who’s wrapping up an internship in Longmont and will begin a full-time job with Seagate in May, after graduation. During his internship, Ryan designed, implemented and debugged a script to create memory preload files for use in system-on-a-chip (SoC) simulations. This script reduces the time spent debugging and running simulations, said his manager, Ed Hoskins.
“Nothing Like Class”
“My internship experience here was extremely beneficial,” said Ryan. “It gave me my first real-world experience working in the industry. Working for a company like Seagate is nothing at all like being in class. This internship prepared me for a job better than any class could.”
Kodi Hildebrandt, a former intern who will be joining the Longmont team fulltime in January, agreed.
“There’s only so much you can gather in the classroom or a three-hour lab,” said Kodi, who designed experiments testing thermal-mitigation strategies for SoC devices. “It’s one thing to learn the theory in class, but another to try and understand it when applied. My internship gave me more perspective from the usual academic reports, and it helped show me areas that I need to improve upon.”
Allison Hanley, an applications engineer in Shakopee, joined the company over two years ago, following a stint with another company after graduation. Before that, she had been an intern at Seagate and enjoyed the experience. Coming back to Seagate was an easy decision for her, she said.
“The technology that Seagate develops is on the forefront of the industry—whether it’s finding new storage solutions in the hard drive realm, or exploring new possibilities in solid-state technology,” Allison said. “Having exposure to all of this is extremely exciting as a young employee. I’ve gotten to work on multiple programs and across many job functions. Every day, I wind up leaving with new knowledge I didn’t have before, and that’s unbelievably rewarding.”