For me, this summer was a roller coaster of learning, hard work, professional growth, but most importantly personal growth. I had the privilege of working for Intel and it made for an exciting couple of months! I got to work in the Technology Development division of Intel at their manufacturing site in Hillsboro Oregon. Their Oregon site employs tens of thousands of people with hundreds of different teams all serving different functions, so I had the pleasure of meeting employees and interns from many different backgrounds and experiences.
The diversity of the campus helped me to learn about how big Intel is and how wide of an operation they run. In the Oregon campus that I worked at, there were teams working on chip design, chip manufacturing, Internet of Things, Artificial intelligence, supply chain logistics, marketing, finance, and more! I was able to meet so many interns doing so many different jobs, all with the same goal of making and selling the worlds best processors.
For the past couple years, Intel has been trying to pivot their corporate strategy from a PC centric business to a Data centric business. What this means is that they are trying to be less dependent on selling PC chips as their main business, and grow to dominate products and services that are very data reliant. This means they have been pouring money for R&D for IOT, AI, data center products, drones, quantum computing, and even futuristic technologies such as autonomous driving. Our previous CEO said that data is the new oil, and Intel is trying to capitalize on that. All this change in growth requires the means to accommodate for that growth, and that was the group I was assigned to work in. Within Corporate services, I was assigned to the technology development group, which maintains and improves Intel’s facilities and equipment that is used to manufacture chips. As a Mechanical engineer, I learned a lot about the massive mechanical systems that are used in such a secretive high tech factory.
One thing I learned from my internship was how to manage my work and time. In my office, none of my peers cared what time I got to work, when I left, if I’m on my phone at my desk, or if I loiter around with other interns. It’s a very hands off and relaxed environment because the culture there is that employees are capable and responsible of being on top of their work and deliver their tasks on time. I was assigned a huge project my first week on the job, and my mentors only checked up on me twice throughout the two and a half months that I was there. I went out of my way to ask for more work and experience, but it was completely up to me to do that. I managed my own schedule, which allowed me to be flexible and learn things outside of my scope.
Working in Hillsboro was a truly great because I got to experience what it was like to live in the Portland, Oregon area. I was able to experience a new way of life away from home and school, and made tons of new friends from all over the nation! The only downside was being away from my family and friends in California :’(.
It truly was a great experience for me this summer, but now it’s time to pack and gear up for the next adventure: Junior year!