Summer Intern Season Is In Full Swing at LFA

LFA Takes on College Interns for Summer

Each summer LFA hires several college interns not only to encourage and teach students, but also to fortify its summer staffing needs. College interns at LFA are engaged on actual ongoing projects and mentored through the learning process.

The LFA summer internship program splits time between office and field work in an effort to broaden each student’s practical experience. Each intern is offered the opportunity to work with various design teams as well as assist LFA field crews gaining understanding and familiarization with surveying, construction observation, testing, water quality monitoring and GPS/GIS work.

This summer, we welcome back Michigan State rising senior Kortney West, who joined us to learn more from the Survey/GIS Department. Her field work here gave her real work exposure to ongoing projects and helped her to realize this is the type of civil engineering career path she wants to follow after graduation. West lives in South Bend and originally became interested in engineering by watching her dad, who is in construction management, growing up. That, coupled with a gift for math, led her down this path, she said.

She said she hired on at LFA because a smaller company size gives her the opportunity to build connections with staff.

When she’s not at work, she enjoys catch-and-release fishing, mostly from a canoe or kayak, on several area inland lakes.

From Valparaiso University, senior Barrett Church joins LFA to learn about structural engineering, working within the Transportation Department. Last summer he had an internship in construction management at construction company but chose LFA for 2024 to learn more about the design side of civil engineering as opposed to field work and project management. Already he said he has been able to help on some design work with CAD (Computer-aided Design) and similar engineering software. He notes that working in for an engineering firm is completely different from school and academia because the “problems” are not just handed to you and involve broad and complex thought processes. He said he chose LFA also because the smaller size allows him to get to know the people he is working with.

Church is a big sports fan; basketball and football being his favorites. As his dad is from Canada, Church is a Toronto Raptors basketball fan, he said. He also enjoys weightlifting.

Lauren Trim will be a junior this fall at Purdue University. Her curriculum emphasis is in hydraulics and hydrology so LFA placed her with the Water Resources Department this summer. She said she has been able to do flow metering as well as monitoring oxygen levels at a local dam. Trim chose LFA because in 8th grade, she interviewed someone from LFA for a career projects and became interested in the body of work this firm has catalogued.

Trim enjoys weightlifting, reading romance novels and can often be found at the beach.

Trim said she chose LFA because the internship program offers more involvement with staff. “LFA makes sure I understand the ‘why’ behind things,” she said. “I feel like the work I do here, matters. It’s not just practice.”

Welcome to the team Kortney, Barrett and Lauren!