My name is Demmi Christensen, and I’m an intern at Hillsdale Fabricators (Alberici’s steel division) this summer. I am student enrolled at the University of Missouri working toward my undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering, along with a minor in business and construction management.
This is my first internship, which made me extremely excited and nervous all at once. Going into my internship, I was excited to finally see the concepts and ideas that I have been learning in class applied outside of the textbook. Yet I was extremely nervous because I wanted to make sure that I met Alberici’s expectations. The minute I entered orientation I felt at home, I was greeted with a smile and sincere questions asking me how my move was, how I was doing today, and if I would like coffee, water or anything to eat. This simple act made my initial jitters rest, so that I felt only excitement to learn and the confidence to ask questions.
One of the biggest reasons I wanted to work for Alberici from the start is the initiative that the company takes when things are not going the way that it was originally intended. While doing research about Alberici, I read the story about how the company’s problems with a steel supplier led to the decision to fabricate the steel themselves, which is now known as Hillsdale Fabricators. Hillsdale has even taken it to the next level in the past twenty years and not only supplies to other Alberici companies, but to other general contractors.
The idea of always evolving and bettering themselves as a company became more and more clear throughout the orientation. This is clear through the acquisition of Flintco and through their safety program, SafeRing, where they Plan, Communicate, Observe, and Improve. The goal is to seek out all aspects of the company and constantly try to improve them.
Speakers that presented to us during orientation made it evident that the employees were treated like family, the projects that they were given challenged them and kept them on their toes, it seemed that it was a place that would be fun, challenging, and rewarding to work for.
Walking into the fabrication center and seeing the size of steel is jaw dropping. Working out problems in class, I used to think that’s big, but it was just a number on sheet of paper for me. Seeing this number in person and looking at how many little parts go into making a specific member is something completely different. I kept thinking about the phrase “Without out the small pieces the larger picture doesn’t work”. I am excited and to dive in and learn all the little pieces that contribute to Hillsdale Fabricators, and hopefully at the end of the internship fully understand how the larger picture functions.