Students & Faculty

Robert D. Emery – 2021 Steel Intern Scholar

My summer internship working for Falk PLI in Portage, Ind., was very educational and rewarding. Since Falk PLI is an industry leader in the unique practice of surveying and precision laser measurement, I was exposed to a wide variety of jobs, each bringing their own differences and challenges. First, I learned to use AutoCAD and earned my 10-hour OSHA general industry safety certification. Then, I was able to take part in civil engineering projects where I helped transform survey data into CAD models. These models were then printed as schematics to be used by construction crews.

I was also able to use data collected by precision laser measurement instruments to provide a detailed analysis of the alignment of rolls, mill stands, and machinery inside coke batteries, crane bays, and steel mills across the country. The resulting reports informed the mill’s engineers about what problems the mill may be facing, including imperfections too small to be seen by the human eye, and what could be done to correct misalignments to improve yields, optimize efficiency, and reduce stress and wear on machinery. In doing so, I learned about how different types of mills work and how they differ depending on the product they produce.

I also learned many new tricks using Excel that can be used to make calculations and data reporting much easier and more accurate, allowing clients to better understand what they need to do to keep their machinery and facilities in top condition.

Overall, I learned a lot about working in engineering and got to see and help work on a wide variety of jobs across the surveying and engineering industry. My internship with Falk PLI was much more than just a summer job; it was a learning experience that will open many doors for me and pave the way for my future in the engineering field. This internship has also provided me with a good taste of the many opportunities that a job in the steel industry brings. I enjoyed working with great, knowledgeable Falk PLI professionals both in the office and the field and given the privilege, I would most certainly intern with them again in the future.

Robert Emery is from Valparaiso, Ind., USA. Robert is a sophomore mechanical engineering major at Purdue University West Lafayette’s Honors College. He completed his internship at Falk PLI Engineering and Surveying Portage, Ind., USA.