We are pleased
that our students are quite successful in obtaining paid summer
internships, either on campus or at other locations.
Internships Beyond Wesleyan
NASA-Langley—Will George and Mark Mattis have internships in aerospace
engineering working with alumnus Chris Kuhl. They are analyzing performance
data transmitted from the heat shield of the Mars rover Curiosity that
landed August 5, 2012.
NASA-Langley—Russell Gillespie has an internship in aerospace engineering,
working to design continuous flaps for supersonic jets.
NASA-Glenn—Jacob Poldruhi’s internship involves
logistics and operations at the Space Academy. Jacob will schedule meetings
with aerospace professionals, planning colloquia, and planning visits to
other NASA sites and companies such as Boeing and SpaceX.
NASA Fellowships—Matt Spicer and Conor Forrester are
working at the West Virginia Forest Products Company. The goals are to
study ways to reduce energy usage, to investigate new product ideas, and to
investigate ways to improve environmental protection. Funding is provided
through the University-Industry Program of the WV-NASA Space Grant
Neuroscience SURI Program—Dillon
Huffman is working with Dr. Gritsenko to
investigate how the body’s nervous system controls movement. Dillon will be
using electronic sensors and 3-dimensional modeling. This research could
lead the development of touch-sensitive prosthetics. In addition, Dillon
will collaborate with a team at George Mason University to develop an
NSF Electrical Engineering Program at
Penn State—Amy Hein’s project will involve the next
generation of MRI equipment.
Marathon Oil—Amber Stewart has an internship in chemical engineering at
Marathon’s facility in Catlettsburg, Ky.
WV Division of Highways—Nick Jones has an internship in civil engineering.
Internships beyond Wesleyan—
Walter Reed Army Medical Center—Wesley Hughes
had a summer internship in prosthetics design at
Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
Wesley’s leg had been amputated due to an accident while skiing. He designed
a prosthetic for himself. He reports, “"The components I used
were the Total Knee 2100 and the Flex-Run foot, both by Ossur,
an Icelandic company. Here’s a photo the running leg I designed for
Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson—This was the second summer Rachel Haas worked for Raytheon. Rachel
reports, “My job was to update a section of simulation computer code that
simulates weapons systems. My updated code will be released to use by
everyone in the company. I gave a presentation of my work at a meeting of
all the department managers. The supervising manager wants to bring me back
again next summer.”
Clinic Medical Physics—Kate Turner’s fellowship was sponsored by the American Association of
Physicists in Medicine. She reports, “I worked on two projects with the chief medical
physicist. My first project was a study of setup errors in patients with
gynecological tumors. My second project compared three types of radiatioin therapies for prostate cancer. I was able to
network with medical physicists from all around the world.”
Natural Gas Internship—Wes Marsh had an
internship at Energy Corp of America. His project
involved finding ways to improve the ground preparation at sites where Marcellus
shale drilling rigs were placed. We found a more cost-effective technique
to keep the ground safe for large trucks. We also found improved materials
used on the work surface to contain spills and improve traction. Wes is
pursuing an M.S. in Industrial Engineering at WVU.
Fellowship—Petroleum. Denny Vincent
used a GIS to update a database of their gas wells for Energy Corporation
of America. Denny works as a Petroleum Engineer at Weatherford in Weston.
Institute of Health Internship at WVU. Dillon
Huffman studied carbon nanotubes, which are long narrow allotropes of
carbon in a seamless cylindrical structure. Their unique electrical and
physiochemical properties make nanotubes a desirable material in
electronics, bioengineering, and medicine. We studied their effect on five
different cell lines that were genetically modified to overexpress several
filter research at Jefferson National Lab.
Robert Powell modified the Wein
filter on new beam line that was installed at the Continuous Electron Beam
Accelerator Facility (CEBAF). This resulted in better control over the
direction of the electron’s spin. Bobby is a field engineer Bechtel-Bettis in Pittsburgh.
frequency oscillator modification at Jefferson National Lab. Heather Graffius modified the BFM circuit at the Continuous
Electron Beam Accelerator Facility (CEBAF) at Jefferson National Lab. The
electron beam was generated by lasers pulsing at 499 MHz, synchronous with
the radio-frequency cavities of the accelerator. Experiments at CEBAF can
benefit by decreasing the frequency to allow the detectors to better
distinguish the signal from the background, which the new BFM circuit
Internships beyond Wesleyan—
reports, “I worked on a lunar dust mitigation project. To permit astronauts
to spend more time in space, lunar dust needs to be better controlled. We
also took a week-long trip to Racetrack Playa in Death Valley, California,
to study the phenomena of the roving rocks. The rocks move around on the
almost flat surface of a dried up lake bed. The rocks leave behind trails
that are hundreds of feet long. No one has ever witnessed this happening.
We took measurements of the moving trails to form a hypothesis on the
mechanisms required to move the rocks. National Geographic magazine wrote
an article on this project, which included this photo of me.” Devon is
working on an M.S. in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Alabama.
studied inflationary cosmology and the cosmic microwave background. She
contributed to POINCARE, an experiment that will place instruments at
multiple observatories to cover nearly the full sky to measure polarization
in the cosmic microwave background.
NASA-Glenn—Jacob Poldruhi’s project involved the
Task. As mankind ventures out to explore the solar system, it is critical
to efficiently utilize raw materials. For example, plastic waste must be
recycled into useful materials such as water and fuel. Our project
developed a process to begin the recycling process of organic waste
materials into raw materials needed to support human habitation beyond
meets astronaut Gregory H. Johnson, who flew on Space Shuttle flights 123
NSF Electrical Engineering Program at
Penn State—For each of the past seven years, one Wesleyan
student has worked on the nuclear quadrupole
resonance project with Dr. Jeffrey Schiano and
Wesleyan alumnus Tom Tyson. These students are Jazmyne
Claggett, Jacob Wilson, Michael Scruggs, Devon
Miller, Mike Murphy, Jackie Queen, and Tom Tyson. (Tom is working on a
Ph.D. with Dr. Schiano.) They studied
modifications to the Robinson marginal oscillator circuit. Their research
could be applied to the pharmaceuticals industry or to detect roadside
Science Program at Florida State University—Chera Rogers experience in Materials
Science. She worked on a theoretical study of impurities using random-walk
Engineering Coop with WV Division of Highways—Jason reports, “I was fortunate to have a boss who had
just acquired his professional engineering license. He was eager to get me
as much experience as he could during the summer.” Jason is working on an
M.S. in Civil Engineering at WVU.
Research at WVU—Jason Jackson worked with Dr. Jeremy Dawson on
an optical biosensor project. Jason’s project used photonic crystals, which
have a structure that keeps out light of a particular frequency.
Nuclear internship at Westinghouse--Bobby
Powell worked alongside two engineers at the Westinghouse Nuclear Power Design Facility
in Cranberry, Pa. Bobby reports, “I updated the egress report for the AP1000 power
plant. I also compared specs of three similar designs, and researched new
technology for future plant designs.”
Physics research at Penn State—Thunderstorm charge configuration. Heather Graffius applied the equivalence principle to model the
changes in the electrical structure of a thunderstorm caused by lightning
strikes. She modeled the electric field changes following a variation of
charge before and after a lightning strike to prove the validity of the
equivalence principle. Heather is working on an M.S. in Atmospheric Physics
at Creighton University.
Radio Astronomy Observatory, Greenbank, WV—Mike Murphy’s objective was to constructed an improved small diameter
radio telescope. The typical design uses a superheterodyne
receiver and consists of four primary blocks: a low-noise amplifier, a
band-pass filter, a mixer, and a local oscillator. Mike made measurements
on the Sun and Jupiter and of the galactic rotation curves.
Energy Audit at West Virginia Split
Rail. Matt Stadelman performed an energy audit at this
local industrial operation. Matt measured the electrical usage of the
large industrial motors at West Virginia Split Rail using infrared
thermometers and ammeters. His objective was to find methods of reducing
the peak electrical demand that occurs when the motors are turned on, and
writing an instruction manual for starting the motors in a way that
minimizes operating costs. West Virginia Split Rail will gain long-term
cost savings from Matt’s work. His mentors were Mike Hinkle at West
Virginia Split Rail and Mark Winnett at Tioga Resources, an engineering
consulting firm in Bridgeport.
Dr. Wiest, Mark
Winnett, Matt Stadelman, and Dr. Popson
NASA Fellowships is provided by the West Virginia Space Grant Consortium.
Funding for SURE Grants is provided by the WV Higher Education Policy Commision.