July 18, 2022
Hello! My name is Stephen Kielhofner and I am a mechanical intern at the St. Louis branch of Ross & Baruzzini. I decided to pursue an internship in mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineering as this field is a less-traditional sector of mechanical engineering. Where instead of designing individual mechanical devices, a complex system of mechanical devices and structures is assembled for a practical purpose.
My manager is a seasoned MEP engineer, while my mentors have been in this area of work for around three to five years. Communicating with people outside of my direct coworkers and fellow interns are encouraged. Questions about job assignments and MEP, in general, are answered and encouraged.
During the first few weeks, I spent many hours orienting myself with software such as Revit, Trace 700, and AutoCAD. And my mentors trained me in some basics of mechanical design and software applications. Once some training had been completed, a common task given to me would include modifying Revit drawings based on redlines. Or tracing ductwork to identify the airflows and horsepower of HVAC units. One morning, a member of Ross & Baruzzini construction administration took the intern team on-site of a major building renovation to observe how MEP systems all fit together and the importance of coordinating work between different systems’ teams.
My manager also took the intern team to a client site to scout existing HVAC systems and their conditions in a building before renovation design work began. These tasks and activities are giving me a clear-cut idea how what my job may look like being a full-time mechanical engineer.