Life of an Intern

DISTek Intern Michaela Leinen
Michaela Leinen

I became sick of clerical work and odd jobs that would never help me in my career, so last summer I went on the hunt for something with embedded systems around Cedar Falls.  I found DISTek and sent a message on their “Contact Us” link.  Never would I have imagined that it was going to be such a great experience in my life.  When I was a freshman in college, my first semester I told one of my professors that I was interested in the computers inside of the Ag machinery.  A year later, I was offered a job at DISTek and my dream had been fulfilled.

Working and going to school is a hard thing to do.  I give props to all those people who work, go to college, and raise a family which is what I admire about many of my coworkers.  While taking classes in my field of study, I was able to apply it to what I was doing at work.  It was a relief to see that I will actually need the stuff I’m learning in my career.  Seeing how much I learned in one semester and how it really related to my work made me realize that I should pick up another minor.   Not because I figured I should, but because I had someone with experience tell me that they wish they would have done it when they were still in college.

Not only have I learned so much during my time at DII and being able to relate it to my major courses in Computer Science, but I have been so welcomed by everyone on staff.  The environment at the DII Cedar Falls work place is something that I have never experienced before.  I enjoy being able to get out of my office and have a conversation with whomever I run in to in the hallway.  I am so lucky to be surrounded by nice and smart people who are willing to help you learn.  This job is all about learning.  Don’t know something?  Go bum a textbook off of a coworker, ask a coworker who is an expert, or just Google it.  Everyone here is willing to lend a hand and stuff your belly with treats on a daily basis.  I am so happy to have already experienced my dream job while doing an internship and solidifying what I want to do with my life and I thank DISTek for that.

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