Dustin Warren is a senior engineering major from Martin.

Engineering student turns current job into internship opportunity

Dustin Warren, a senior engineering major at the University of Tennessee at Martin, didn’t have to look far to find an internship opportunity for his engineering degree. Already an employee at Advanced Technology Services Inc., Warren reached out to his supervisors to find out if he could apply his engineering coursework toward an internship position with the company.

ATS is a company that contracts industrial maintenance projects for other corporations. Warren’s internship included extensive work matching current equipment updates to the appropriate paperwork. This involved evaluating the equipment to determine what updates have already been made and what components matched the existing manuals. He was also able to determine which machines needed appropriate documentation.

“I had to read through and analyze prints and schematics to determine which documents go to which machines and check the different versions to find which were valid and which were obsolete,” he said. “On my new project, I will be using (computer-aided design) to draw up new prints and schematics so that someone else can apply the modifications to other pieces of equipment.”

Warren’s regular position with ATS is not based in engineering, so his internship was an opportunity to apply his education in new ways and stretch himself as a professional.

“Dustin’s familiarity with the environment, the work ATS does and his education in engineering were critical to his success,” said Alaina Schnipke, ATS internship coordinator. “Not only is he familiar with the day-to-day operations of his location, but his ability to stretch into an engineering capacity helped with the overall efficiency of his team and technical strength.”

“Manufacturing engineering is about the process of taking a product that can be made singularly and designing processes that will allow that product to be mass-produced,” said Warren. “I enjoy new challenges, and this is a field with limitless challenges.”

The UT Martin engineering program introduced a manufacturing concentration in 2017 to fill an industry need among engineering professionals. The program is the first of its kind in Tennessee and the second bachelor’s-level training program for manufacturing engineers in the southeast. Manufacturing is one of six available concentrations within UT Martin’s engineering major, the others being civil, mechanical, mechatronics, electrical and industrial.

For more information on opportunities available through the UT Martin Department of Engineering, contact the department at 731-881-7571 to speak with an academic advisor.


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