Last But Not Least (Intern Files #007)

Amanda Charboneau, OPS-Solutions, 2017 HF Intern

Amanda Charboneau, OPS-Solutions, 2017 HF Intern

I would love to say that I found hacker fellows, but in reality hacker fellows found me. My journey began at a job fair like so many others, but unlike the rest of my frost bitten MTU peers I was wearing a Casio calculator watch. I was simply walking about when I was stopped by a man named Sam who was excited by the sight of the 80s technology strapped to my wrist. After geeking out for a moment he then introduced me to the program he was representing. The more I heard about it the more excited I got. I applied as soon as I could and spent a week emailing Sam about the program. Eventually the emails stopped coming, and I was a bit worried, then close to the end of the school year I got an email subjected: "Congratulations Amanda, you're accepted to Hacker Fellows Internship Program!"

The following few weeks the Hacker Fellows and Invest Detroit Ventures team hooked us candidates (interns) with several companies to interview with and previous fellows to coach us through these interviews. After a week about half of the interns found positions, another week and all but three did. When the boot camp started I was the only one left, this being the second week in May. 

Hacker Fellows and Invest Detroit Ventures’ team give up on me. Sam, Hacker Fellows P.M. promised that he would find me a position. One that would fit my talents and at a company I would enjoy working for. While the other interns were out eating lunch I was calling and emailing companies, aligning interviews and investigating opportunities!

Wednesday of the bootcamp I got a response from one of the first companies I had interviewed with. Will, the CTO of OPS-Solutions had been working on getting approval for the hiring of a summer intern. Long story short, Will extended me an offer, I soon after accepted!

What an incredible feeling, being on the inside of such a high-stakes week and OPS being my highest priority out of the seven companies I interviewed with.

At OPS-Solutions, I work with projectors and cutting edge sensor technology to deliver work instructions to operators in factory settings. Essentially I work in plant based augmented reality and CAD. I’m already seeing my projects and tools I create being sold and applied. The speed of which I went from nothing to a valued member of a team is a little disorienting, but I couldn't be happier.

I work in Sketchup to design structures for mounting and positioning our projectors so that we can get the most information to the operators while keeping out of the way of any important factory components. I also design standard structures that can be dynamically modified by simply putting in a few inputs like dimensions or angles.

Building custom software used to programing projectors and acquiring sensor data is pretty neat.
— Amanda Charboneau

The software is used for inputs and confirmations. All of it I learned from my co-workers and supervisors. They are all beyond helpful, willing to stop what they are doing in order to assist me in developing my skill.

In closing, I’m so grateful to the Hacker Fellows program for helping me land a job with OPS-Solutions. I am also grateful to have gained skills and friendships that will help me in years to come, but I am most thankful that I wore a calculator watch to Michigan Tech's job fair!


Amanda Charboneau, 2017 Hacker Fellows Intern, currently a rising Senior at Michigan Technological University studying Computer Science. She is working with OPS-Solutions for Summer 2017.