William C. Roberson – 2019 Steel Internship Scholar
This summer, I had the honor of working at Steel Dynamics Inc. — Flat Roll Columbus Division as an electrical intern in the power distribution department. One of the interesting aspects of this job was that I was not stationed in just one part of the mill, but got to experience it all. Every day was a learning experience. On a day-to-day basis I participated in routine electrical maintenance, troubleshooting problems and preventative maintenance checks. I was regularly involved in locking out transformers in order to work on the electrical equipment inside. I got to see firsthand the effects that high voltage can have on electrical equipment and how to prevent issues from occurring in the future.
One of the projects that I completed was building a portable human-machine interface (HMI). The purpose of this was to give the water systems operators the ability to see their HMI screens while out in the field accessing a problem. This gave me valuable experience programming HMI’s and learning the intricate details that goes into building one. The second project that I worked on was a gas panel for the new galvanizing line. The purpose of this was to communicate with air compressors and flow meters. This gave me experience of building an electrical panel from scratch.
One of the difficulties I faced during my internship was learning the diverse field of tasks. The engineers I worked with were understanding of this and were sure to walk me through any questions I had. This internship allowed me to take what I had learned in school and apply it to real world situations. In turn, this provided a deeper understanding of the topics. Going forward, I will be able to lean more in future classes having already had experience in the topics that will be covered.
I would like to thank both AIST and SDI for providing me with this amazing opportunity to work and learn more about the field that I want to pursue. Thank you to all who I worked with for instructing me and making this an awesome experience. Thanks!