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Summer Internships: Grant Allison

Ferris State University students gain valuable work experience through internships. Internships also can confirm or redirect career decision-making, provide marketability, develop people skills and enhance classroom learning. Many academic programs require one, but the experience is encouraged regardless to provide students with a better understanding of what will be expected of them in the workplace.

Many students are participating in myriad internships this summer. Meet:

Grant AllisonGrant Allison

He is: a senior majoring in Manufacturing Engineering Technology and studies at the Ferris-Grand Rapids campus. Grant is a native of Middleville, living in the Green Lake area, near Wayland in Allegan County. “Although this program is scheduled at a slower pace for those of us who already work full time, it has allowed me to stay employed without commuting to Big Rapids. I plan to graduate next May, without incurring any student debt.”

What he is learning on his internship: “The program for us in Grand Rapids is tailored to students who are already working full time in the industry. So, we generally complete our internship responsibilities at our place of work. I work at Stevens Design and Fabrication, Inc. in Jenison. I’ve learned that every second counts. Most manufacturing engineers work in environments where there is high volume production. Over my eight-year career, I have worked in an environment that is more job specific. I have enjoyed applying manufacturing concepts of improvement and waste elimination to processes that might not have as high of a volume but are still crucial within the equipment supplier/builder industry.”

Future Plans: “After finishing my degree, I hope that my hard work speaks for itself by eventually progressing through the ranks and maybe down the road taking on a leadership role. My aspirations include completing a Master of Science degree in Business or Marketing, but I will cross that bridge when the time comes.”

Advice for Other Students Seeking Internships: “Don’t be afraid to ask questions or fail. Communication and learning every day are key. I have learned that the best way to keep things moving is to listen to constructive criticism and not be afraid to get your hands dirty by getting involved with the process. Remember that you’re all on the same team working towards the same goal.”

Ferris Core Values Grant Relates To: “I think Opportunity and Learning are the two I relate to most. Ferris State has given me the opportunity, through its partnership with Grand Rapids Community College, to achieve a goal I set when I was a junior in high school. I specifically remember having a teacher laugh at me when I said that If I decided to go to college, I would attend community college and finish my degree with little to zero debt. Ferris has ultimately allowed me to obtain the book smarts and street smarts, if you will, by letting me learn in the classroom and on the job at the same time.”