It has been a remarkably busy summer and school is not much more of a break! I can finally get back to that PART 2 of my internship with the NOAA Corps Aircraft Operations Center I promised months ago. [See Part 1:My Summer Internship with NOAA (Part 1)]
As my internship progressed, I became more involved in daily operations and more knowledgeable in the systems and software that NOAA Corps Aircraft Operations Center (AOC) uses. As the intern for AOC, I was the glue of the office for the summer. Corps officers are constantly being tasked for missions all over the country, so no one person will ever always be around. That’s where I came in.
I was entrusted with compiling and editing the daily flight schedule for all 9 aircraft in the NOAA Corps fleet. As Hurricane season rolled around, calibration flights became more frequent. Some of these flights even had enough room for me to participate. I was lucky enough to be given the controls of the WP-3D aircraft at one point.
My duties with NOAA Corps didn’t end with the daily schedule and calibration flights, I also helped test newly incorporated Unmanned Aerial Systems such as the PUMA AE drone being utilized for survey missions.
NOAA Corps AOC is also moving forward in an increasingly digital world. They are beginning to use a new digital flight logging system. While working with the system every day from May until August, I became knowledgeable enough in its uses and functions to produce a custom user manual for the AOC to use following my departure back to college.
I was able to land this internship with the help of many teachers and staff in the College of Aeronautics. Without them, I would not have even been offered the position. My tip to everyone looking to become more involved with internships in your field of study is to stay in touch with everyone you meet. Connections matter. Your teachers matter. They are at Florida Tech because of their extensive experience in the work force prior to their education careers, so use them wisely!