Joseph L. Ogea - 2016 Steel Intern Scholar
It is an honor to be receiving this award for a second year. The continued financial support of AIST will relieve financial stress and allow me to focus on my academic work. In addition, the funding to attend MS&T16 will enable me to participate in the AIST Steel to Students Reception as well as sit in on presentations on current developments in our industry. Attending the conference this year is especially important to me as it will be a major networking event as I begin my job search prior to graduation in May 2017. In addition to the funding, I am very excited to have been selected for a summer internship at Conbraco Industries Inc., Steel Products Division, in Conway, S.C., USA. I am the first intern at Conbraco in more than a decade and I am honored to have been the first selected as they start up their internship program. My selection would not have been possible without the help of AIST, the Virginia Tech Foundry Institute for Research and Education (VT FIRE), and the American Foundry Society. The dedication these institutions have shown to practical, industrial education have made me proud to be a student member and a Hokie. While at Conbraco, I led or assisted with multiple projects that reduce costs and increase production efficiency of ASTM A216-WCB and A351-CF8M castings. My primary project was an evaluation of argon bubbling versus argon cover gas in the induction furnaces. While common in large steel mill ladles, argon bubbling is still relatively new to induction melting shops. This project created a unique learning environment, allowing me to apply theory I learned in larger steel mills to a steel casting process. I was also fortunate during my time at Conbraco to be included on several process improvement projects in the finishing and investment coating areas. The unique casting processes used at Conbraco have enabled me to extend my steel education to both investment and no-bake sand casting. This experience is very important to me as I want to learn everything I can about steel production before entering the industry. My previous experience with ATI Specialty Metals, SSAB Americas and VT FIRE, coupled with my new knowledge from Conbraco Industries, has prepared me technically and academically for my future as a steel metallurgist; and AIST, through its industry outreach and financial support, has provided me with the means to confidently begin my career upon graduation in 2017.