William C. Roberson – 2020 Steel Intern Scholar
I had the honor of working at Steel Dynamics Inc. – Flat Roll Columbus Division as an electrical intern in power distribution for the second summer in a row. Power distribution is an interesting department because we were not limited to one area of the mill, but rather we get to see it all. We also worked closely with water treatment handling their electrical work.
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 motors in order to debug an issue that we were having with them. This included testing the motor starters or simply megging the motor leads to check for any failures in insulation.
This summer I was able to gain more experience with programmable logic controller (PLC) coding. I assisted in developing code using ladder logic for supply water pumps. I also assisted in making modifications to old code that needed to be changed. We worked with both Allen-Bradley and Siemens PLCs.
This department can be difficult to learn as the things that we work on are so diverse. This summer I was able to be ahead of the learning curve since this was my second internship in the department. This allowed me to be a greater asset to the guys that I worked with.
This internship allowed me to take what I had learned in school and apply it to real world situations. This summer has deepened my interest in the steel industry and has given me experience that will be invaluable in a career one day.
I would like to thank AIST for providing me with this amazing scholarship and helping me make valuable connections in the steel industry. Thank you to SDI for allowing me the opportunity to come back this summer to work and learn. Thank you to all who I worked with for instructing me and making this an awesome experience!