Jake’s Intern Experience

Creative like an artist, detailed like an accountant, ambitious like an inventor, dynamic like a politician. Engineers are literally and figuratively paving the way for innovation and positive change. I never imagined having the opportunity to contribute to this mission, especially so early in my adult life. But, Alberici has given me this ability through the summer internship program.

My name is Jake, a rising senior studying Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This summer, I am working on the SSM Health St. Louis University Hospital Project, a $550M venture in St. Louis, MO.

Early in my academic career at UIUC, my future endeavors were set on the transportation industry. Bridges and roads fascinated me and led me to my first engineering internship as a transportation design intern in Chicago. The summer was very worthwhile for me, but for an unexpected reason. I learned that my passions didn’t revolve around roads. During the application process for Alberici last fall, I was amazed by the versatility in the company’s projects. From heavy civil, healthcare, energy, and water treatment, I was beyond excited to have something I didn’t receive in previous jobs: options. The healthcare construction industry was a sector I had no intention of entering. In reality, I never knew that healthcare construction had its own sector in the first place. Nonetheless, when Alberici revealed an opportunity to get onboard a massive hospital project in St. Louis, I couldn’t possibly say no.

Like all interns on their first day, I was invited to the Alberici HQ for orientation. The daylong event helped all the interns get acquainted with the company, the other interns, and several employees and executives. But, of all the things we covered throughout the day, two primarily stuck out to me. One, Alberici isn’t driven by revenue or extreme growth. They are comfortable where they are and passionate about exemplifying their mission of honesty, fairness, and quality. This wasn’t just apparent in the office but demonstrated throughout my first week on the Saint Louis University Hospital project site as well. Coming in to the company, I never realized how important safety was to the company culture on job sites. Construction safety isn’t something stressed in my college coursework, but such a pertinent part of the industry. As previous internships and experiences in construction have proven to me, Alberici truly embodies safety in its entirety. Never have I seen a company so committed to keeping its workers safe.  This project’s Safety Director, Corey, told me that safety shouldn’t be thought about as rules and regulations; safety is all about ensuring that the most important parts of a project (the people) get home to their families at the end of the day.

This leads me into my second observation, that Alberici is a company that invests in its people. Every aspect of the company’s decisions and endeavors revolves around serving employees, from safety techniques to office culture. Alberici has mastered the human element, which has created a loyalty unlike any company I’ve seen before. Even as an intern, the project team has welcomed me immediately and made an effort to help me learn and grow. My supervisor, Peter, frequently takes time out of his day to walk me around the site, explaining concepts that I would have never learned in my college classes. Likewise, most of the PM’s on site, such as Grant, Carl, Katy, and Austin, have mentored me in one way or another, even though they all have numerous other responsibilities to attend to.

This group has helped instill in me a passion to learn this summer and soak up every bit of information I can. But, most importantly, Alberici has helped me realize how incredibly important the people are to the workplace. Good people deliver good work. But, great people deliver great work. Both professionally and interpersonally, Alberici is filled is some great people. I am excited to see what this summer has in store for me.