Dalton Hendren, a PSU senior in manufacturing engineering technology, has spent the last six months exploring and interning in the “Land Down Under.”
Hendren completed his internship in Australia at A.W. Bell. While there, he processed improvement projects and worked hands-on with shell dipping and final furnace operations, such as melting and pouring the metal.
“I really enjoyed meeting… fellow employees,” said Hendren. “Everyone has a story and I loved hearing where everyone came from and learning what made them the person they are.”
Hendren spent his weekdays at his internship and weekends hiking and exploring the trails of the region.
“There are so many trails and places to see that it was hard to really take them all in, even with 6 months,” said Hendren. “I would go out about every weekend to someplace different and explore a hidden beach or rock pool. It truly is a mesmerizing place to get lost in.”
A.W. Bell is a high-tech aerospace metal caster and machine builder in Melbourne. This international internship opportunity was available in part due to Russ Rosmait, professor at technology.
“We started the ground work to build the internship relationship with A.W. Bell in the spring of 2016 when I planned a visit to their facility while I was on sabbatical from PSU,” said Rosmait. “This first relationship-building trip has now yielded four (students) going to Australia doing a six month hands-on internship, with full immersion into their manufacturing environment and culture of that country. A great study abroad opportunity.”
Rosmait, Hendren, and A.W. Bell found the internship to be a good fit for Hendren, and he began his internship in June 2018.
“The major goal in having my students intern abroad is to offer them the ability to gain international manufacturing experience and build knowledge and skills they will learn on the job,” said Rosmait. “This experience also gives our students a chance to network with engineering and manufacturing professionals while working in another part of the world helping to develop a global network of contacts and friends.”
This international leap was Hendren’s first scholarship, and he was not met without a few challenges.
“The most challenging part of the internship was probably the initial part of it before getting in a groove of things,” said Hendren. “Packing up and traveling halfway around the world by yourself along with not knowing a soul over there was pretty stressful at the time.”
Hendren gives credit to others who helped him get where he is today; including Rosmait, his advisor and instructor, and Sam Bell, his employer at A.W. Bell.
“Dalton was the perfect fit for this study abroad internship experience in Australia,” said Rosmait. “He is very independent and adaptable. His confidence in himself allowed him to take his PSU experiences & education and apply into a job on the other side of the world.”
Rosmait hopes that Hendren will receive an offer to work for the company full time after graduation, and Hendren is not opposed to going back to the land down under for further work opportunities.
“I think a few major things I will take away from this internship is that I have greatly improved my skills, as well as learned new ones in the process, and now have a more complete and impressive resume to show for that,” said Hendren. “I’ve connected with people a world away, which I believe will be important if-when I go back.”