Getting FE Experience

Though the experience was only eight weeks long, Allison Monyak still managed to achieve one last, high-priority goal before her internship concluded: snagging a coveted spot in a feature story on the FirstEnergy Today portal.

August 12, 2019

Eight high school grads from northeast Ohio are in the home stretch of their summer internships at FirstEnergy, an eight-week experience that has introduced them to career opportunities within the electric utility industry.

“The high school internship program is designed to introduce young students to careers at FirstEnergy, with hopes they will progress through the company’s college internship program and ultimately secure full-time jobs with the company after college,” said Ted McQuain, HR recruiter, who leads FirstEnergy’s college recruiting program.

The high school program is currently in its second year.

Among this year’s internship class is soon-to-be University of Akron freshman Allison Monyak, who plans to major in computer or civil engineering this fall. Allison, who is from Strongsville, Ohio, previously participated in a four-year engineering course at Polaris Career Center, where she was introduced to FirstEnergy’s internship program by an employee who spoke to her class about the various career opportunities the company offers.

She was one of eight students chosen for this year’s high school internship program, which has a competitive selection process. More than two dozen students from Polaris Career Center in Cleveland and the All-Akron Student Engineering Program submitted essays and delivered presentations for consideration. And even fewer finalists were interviewed and hired by FirstEnergy.

Once selected, our high school interns gain hands-on industry experience working alongside FirstEnergy transmission employees and participate in project-based learning both in and out of the office. Students also shadow transmission and substation employees and get to explore many areas of the company – from maintenance and lab testing to equipment troubleshooting and regulatory compliance.

“One of my favorite aspects of my FirstEnergy internship is being able to learn about the different parts of the business and see how they all work together,” said Allison. “I never realized how much behind-the-scenes work went into being able to have power when you turn on a light switch and it’s been great to be a part of that process this summer.”

From a young age, Allison has enjoyed building structures and testing their stability using different formulas. While her experience at FirstEnergy has reaffirmed her decision to pursue a degree in engineering, she said it also has opened her eyes to different career paths within engineering, like marketing.

“I’ve met so many amazing people during my internship and I’m having a lot of fun learning things I never would have learned in a classroom alone,” she said. “I definitely feel like it’s prepared me for college and made me more confident in my decision to become an engineer.”

More information about the company’s internship and career opportunities is available here.

Cole Zehe enjoyed the opportunities available to shadow our transmission and substation employees through FE’s summer internship program. He is a graduate of Olmsted Falls High School and Polaris Career Center.