Intern Spotlight: Melissa Shaw

We at Civiltec are so excited to announce Melissa Shaw’s joining our summer intern program. She joins us from California Polytechnic State University, Pomona studying for a degree in Aerospace Engineering. Let’s take a moment to spotlight this young engineer. 

Why are you interested in this internship/company/industry, and what skills or experiences do you hope to gain?

The structural side of Civiltec is what made me interested in this company. Working as an intern for Civiltec would allow me to strengthen my skills in AutoCAD and familiarize myself with other structural analysis programs. This will allow me to broaden my knowledge of structural engineering.

What attracted you to your chosen field?

Growing up, I have always been fascinated by space. I find the complexity of the physics and the vastness extremely interesting. The fact that we have only explored a tiny fraction compelled me to want to know more. I wanted to be in a position where I could be a part of advancing space exploration and finding new information that has not been discovered. I realized aerospace engineering is a career that will allow me to fulfill my dream. Through this field, I will hopefully be able to play a part in building spacecraft that can broaden our knowledge of space.

What are your long-term goals?

My long-term goals after graduation include working for Edwards Air Force Base up in Lancaster to gain experience in working with aircraft and familiarize myself with the classified domain. From there I hope to find a job that involves working with spacecraft for the remaining years of my career.

What do you enjoy about your current role? 

My current role as an intern has allowed me to meet all the wonderful people at Civiltec. I have enjoyed getting to know the Monrovia team. Everyone is extremely welcoming and kind. Getting to learn AutoCAD with Dan Busqué has been an enjoyable experience as well. I am already learning so much through his training and am looking forward to learning more throughout the summer.

What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about discovering and understanding the way different types of structures are designed and how they work. I specifically find it fascinating how aircraft and spacecraft are designed to be able to endure such an immense amount of  pressure and fatigue. My major has allowed me to dive deeper into this area. Although it is a challenge, I love being given the opportunity at CPP to learn and understand the complexity of these vehicles.

What drew you to Civiltec? 

My mother had worked at Civiltec many years ago. She is an admirable and successful engineer, which leads me to believe that stemmed from the experience she gained from Civiltec. Because of my mother’s relation with Civiltec, I have also attended the annual Day at the Races ever since I was young. I was able to observe the friendly, enjoyable atmosphere people in the company created. David Byrum always stood out to me, not just because he was taller than most people but because he was always so kind to my mom and my family. The dynamic between people working in the company as well as the outstanding engineers I have met is truly what drew me to Civiltec.

Describe your previous work or volunteering experience?

I have been a part of multiple rocket projects under Cal Poly Pomona. I was a part of the structures sub-team for both the Multi-stage Rocket Project and NASA Student Launch. My role in these projects was to design and analyze the structural integrity of various parts of the rocket. Unrelated to engineering, I have also been a lifeguard at Raging Waters and a bartender/bartender for AMC and Brewery X at the Ontario Airport. These jobs have been a great experience for me, as I developed life-saving and communication skills that I can use anywhere.