Nord Hall, Room 312
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106
Student walk-in hours:
Hear what our students have to say about their co-op experiences!
I spent my fall semester working for GE Aviation in Cincinnati, OH. GE manufactures and supports a wide variety of both commercial and military aircraft engines. As a studying Materials Engineer, I was able to work on a variety of failure analysis projects to determine if material defects contributed to common hardware failures; and also some other unique investigations such as certifying third-party companies to perform welding repairs on parts. I was able to work on the entire scope of many projects, from receiving parts, to documentation, right down to the dirty work of cutting them up and analyzing them with high-tech microscopy and other machines. It was intense to think that I was making some pretty important decisions on a piece of hardware that had just flown on an airliner halfway across the globe. One highlight was on Veteran's Day, when some GE-powered Apache and Blackhawk helicopters landed in the parking lot and we got a close-up look at just a couple of the aircraft GE helps put and keep in the air every day.
Not only have I had the chance to work on the construction of one bridge but during my seven month co-op, I was able to work on eight different bridges. Located on downtown Cleveland’s Ohio River Valley, the Innerbelt Bridge is taking form with my help. The main bridge spans over four thousand feet along with the combination of 18 other bridges needed to change traffic flow and move the bridge. While some of my work took place in an office setting my job wasn’t a normal desk job. When driving by a construction site I have always wondered why there were so many people standing around never dreaming I’d become one of those people. On a daily basis I found myself out in the field watching concrete being poured, inspecting the work going on, or climbing different forms. The coolest part of my job was whenever I was able to put on my harness and take a ride in a manlift. Ninety feet high on the top of a pier cap was my destination (See picture). While on top of the soon-to-be concrete pier cap I’ve climbed inside the steel form and in the middle of a rebar maze to place temperature sensors and count the rebar in place. While maneuvering my way through the rebar, I felt I was training for a Mission Impossible movie and trying to dodge a laser. However the best part of my job was being able to drive by the work site and tell people I helped to build this new bridge.
In 2011, I undertook a Co-Op at Arthrex Inc. in Naples, Florida, as an R&D lab technician. Arthrex is a privately owned orthopedics company that designs and manufactures devices and procedures. While spending the majority of my time in the lab maintaining the degradation studies; much of it was spent enjoying the many benefits Arthrex provides for their employees. Arthrex arranges subsidized housing in the luxurious Malibu Lakes condos for all Co-Ops. While paying only half the rent, I got to enjoy 24 hour access to pools, hot tubs, workout rooms, and beautiful scenery with gated security. Arthrex offers free gym memberships to their employees and CO-OPs, one of the methods they implement to preserve their employees’ health. Another way they fulfill that goal is by having free catered lunch four days a week. These lunches include salad bar with soup as well as a fresh delicious meal ranging from a variety of seafood to a well prepared skirt steak. When not working, Naples/Arthrex has many other attractions. Naples is located on the Southwest coast of Florida, providing many beaches to adventure. One of my fondest memories is playing volleyball on the beach with my co-workers in February, while the rest of America was frozen over. Besides the activities Naples has to offer, Arthrex provides at least one company event each month. I got the pleasure to volunteer at their annual company charity golf tournament, where employees can play 18 holes of golf at a private country club at a discount, raising over $7,000 for the Arthritis Foundation. With all those attractions, it’s easy to forget the biggest benefit is the laboratory experience and networking I accomplished at Arthrex. I heavily recommend Arthrex to anyone looking for a Co-Op or job; they display exceptional treatment for their employees.