Altieri Summer Interns are Hands-On

Insights 2023 Summer Interns

Meet our summer interns (Caroline, Maggie, and Lizzy) as they report in on the value of a hands-on, collaborative experience!

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My name is Caroline Mancini. I graduated from School of the Holy Child this past June and will be a freshman at Davidson College in the fall.  

Currently, I am assigned to a number of different projects and focused on mechanical systems. For one of the larger projects, Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC, I studied an existing HVAC system in an underground collection vault to determine its effect on Altieri’s design for a new clean agent fire suppression system. My work is contributing to systems that will protect valuable documents if there is ever a fire. Specifically, I determined the volume of existing equipment to ensure enough clean agent gas is provided, and I modified the existing ductwork with smoke dampers to make sure the collection vault remains airtight if there is a fire, to maximize the effectiveness of the clean agent system. I have also worked on a private residence in Fairfield County, learning how to outfit equipment such as ducts and manifold circuits to support the heating of the building.  

This is my second summer as an Altieri intern. I chose to return because of how much I had learned last summer and how supportive my coworkers were. The hands-on design experience is a challenge that is supplemented with direct guidance, giving me the confidence to succeed. I even used the technical information I learned at Altieri last summer to inspire my senior thesis: applying MEP principles to my school’s new campus addition. The Women in Engineering group is another reason I returned. Our meetings include a Story Share component where we hear about recent situations each of us has faced as a woman in the field (or in class). These less industry-specific lessons have taught me how to speak up for myself and to recall the poise that other women show in their responses to these challenging situations.

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My name is Lizzy Murphy. I am a rising junior at the University of Connecticut majoring in mechanical engineering.

I decided to go into engineering because I have always enjoyed problem solving and the creativity and challenges that come with working in STEM. Everyone at Altieri is very welcoming and I enjoy the amount of collaboration that goes into all of the projects. I have learned so much already including the use of a few different programs I had never used, giving me skills I can take back to school and into my career. I was also able to go on a site visit to one of the projects Altieri has been working on; it was very rewarding to see how the work we do translates into real life. 

So far this summer, I have worked on a few different projects, but mainly the Future Museum in Milwaukee. Using 3D Revit, I have been helping with zone plans to determine the airflows needed in specific rooms and spaces. I have been working on a program called CONTAM to calculate the necessary stairwell and elevator pressurization values. These values are calculated because, in case of a fire, increased pressurization of stairwells and elevators can decrease the amount of smoke that travels into them, therefore allowing a smoke free stairwell for exiting the building in a safe way.  

One of my favorite things about being at Altieri this summer is being part of the firm’s community of women engineers. We attend monthly meetings with the other female engineers and discuss the experiences others have had being a woman in this predominantly male field. It is beneficial to listen to women who have been in the industry for a long time and take away the different ways they have been able to overcome the challenges of being a woman in this field.  

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I am Maggie Mannella, a rising sophomore at the University of Connecticut majoring in electrical engineering.

At Altieri, I tend to jump around various projects and help wherever I am needed. Some projects I am involved in include high end residential homes, a museum in Philadelphia, and a theatre in Massachusetts. I do all my work in 3D Revit (which I have learned how to use this summer). Examples of things I do are placing receptacles that are in alignment with the National Electrical Code (NEC), circuiting devices to panelboards, calculating load sizes of motors and making sure the electrical department numbers coordinate with the mechanical department, and placing lighting devices that are given to Altieri from a lighting consultant. I enjoy interning here at Altieri because I am given tasks that have meaning. I know that the work I am involved in is helpful and can make a difference in the project I am working on. Everyone in Studio Ken has been welcoming and is always open to answering all of my silly questions.  

The work I am doing at Altieri has taught me a lot about power distribution in the real world. I know that I will use this knowledge in college and apply it to topics I will learn. There is only so much I can learn from reading a textbook; seeing the concepts unfold in real life has helped me so much. In addition, the amount of collaboration and teamwork in this company has helped me with my communication skills. This will help me not only in school, but far in the future when I am working full-time.  

Altieri also has monthly meetings with the Women in Engineering group. These meetings are relaxed, upbeat, and play a huge role in the welcoming environment here. Being a woman in engineering can be scary, but seeing these successful women who have gone through the experiences I am going through right now is comforting and inspiring. 

The Importance Of Internships And The Invaluable Relationships They Bring