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Intern Spotlight: Asher Williamson

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Asher Williamson, Intern at Tesla

Where did you intern, and what were you doing for your internship?
I was interning as a Manufacturing Engineer for Tesla’s Model 3 Battery Pack Production Team. I helped create line designs and micro efficiencies for the first half of the production at Gigafactory 1. I recently accepted a position at Tesla Fremont Factory (near San Francisco) as a Project Manager for the Factory Construction Team this upcoming summer. Again, I will help design factory lines and carry out construction for the new Cybertruck and Model 3 Factories. 

How did your internship help you reach your career goals?
Tesla has helped me to get closer to my goal of being a CEO by 30 because I have learned how to work fast, hard, and efficiently. At one point, I was juggling 19 projects; Tesla taught me that everything is possible; it’s just about finding the right way to do it in half the amount of time. I love to work with like-minded people, especially when it comes to going 100 miles a minute.

Tell me a little bit about what you learned throughout the course of the internship.
Here are some of the key takeaways I learned:

  1. Cross-team communication is vital for any change.
  2. Being a good learner is equivalent to being a great worker. I had to learn the following programs and processes AutoCad, Aconex, PCA, OEE, Equipment Matrix, OSHA, FlowSim, VBA, Excel Functions, Ignition (novice), MI Creation, MS Flow, SQL, and Database Optimization.
  3. Engineer for the people that are using the tool you are creating
  4. Preparation sets up for future success, but a good team carries this out.
  5. I am a creative engineer.

Tell me about how the University of Dayton helped you find your internship.
The University Coached me to be an eager beaver with the job search. I started looking in early October. I found the job in November. However, I messaged hundreds of people on Linkedin to get my foot in the door. I continued to push for more information. Until one day, I got an email saying that they wanted to move forward with my application. I went multiple times to Lisa Witt’s office to get coaching on how to interview. She helped me to hit home run answers for the tough interview questions.

Why do you think it helps to learn on the job?
It helps to learn on the job because each job is unique. An employer doesn’t care what knowledge you already have. They will teach you the processes that they have created to match the way things run. One can only prepare so much for a job. Tesla looks for someone they can mold to be a Tesla engineer, not just a generic mechanical engineer. I had to learn a lot of programming for my job. SQL is not a standard for most engineers. However, the job required it, and I provided it.

What accomplishments did you make during your internship?

  1. Led project eliminating headcount cost of $1.1 million annually with layout design and capacity optimization.
  2. Managed & designed a new combined remanufacturing area. Improved labor efficiency using AutoCAD for design and OEE (Overall Equipment Efficiency). Involved ergonomic changes using optimal reach distances and met weight force guidelines. Requesting construction labor and technical support through the JIRA system.
  3. Saved $129,000 in material cost annually for adhesive in the assembly line by reducing $356 per liter to $14 per liter measured by developing a cost matrix and risk analysis of lineside pumps. Rated proper ventilation.
  4. Ensured safety and assessed risk management line side following OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirements using POs (Purchase Orders) and utilized Aconex CRQF for safety materials.
  5. Created a Gigafactory wide program for labor transfers, pushed for labor accuracy and savings with Kronos time clocks presented in Tableau with SQL queries aimed at KPI (key performance indicators) dashboards.
  6. Project managed deconstruction of line and relocation of new line approved by PCA (Process Change Request). Worked with a tool install team to safely destruct and construct hoists meeting safety standards.
    Filmed, photographed, and edited recruitment event video for Tesla Recruiting Team.

The Intern Spotlight Series are interviews conducted with current and past SOCHE Interns and interns from SOCHE member institutions, discussing the value of their on-the-job experience at their internship.
If you are interested in hiring an intern, contact Patty Buddelmeyer at patty.buddelmeyer@soche.org or (937) 258-8890.
If you are interested in applying for a SOCHE Internship, go to www.socheintern.org.

Councils & Committees

SOCHE is dedicated to advancing higher education through active collaboration, resource and knowledge building, and effective professional development programs. To accomplish this, SOCHE administers 16 active Councils and Committees. The purpose of a SOCHE Council or Committee is to provide an opportunity for representatives from higher education to be a resource for one another, share information and best practices, identify common challenges, and, ultimately, broaden awareness of the resources, services, and activities in higher education. SOCHE is also dependent upon the Councils and Committees for substantial input on annual professional development programs.

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