Student Trainee in MIS at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Spring 2013

Photo of Jonathan Porter.Jonathan Porter,
majoring in Management Information Systems,
Senior at time of experience.
Employed as Student Trainee at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

What did you do?

Purchased needed supplies for the office with a government purchase card. Collected and helped analyze impact statements for multimillion dollar systems due to sequestration. Composed and managed spreadsheet that held maintenance information for equipment in the office.

What did you learn?

Learned about the multimillion dollar enterprise system the military/government uses to continue to perform at a high level. These systems improve how effective personnel can be by investing in systems that make processes streamlined and standardized across the enterprise.

Your favorite projects from this experience:

My favorite project was helping with the impact statements. It is interesting to learn about how the decisions that Congress makes affect the people who work for the government and how it also affects the systems that the government maintain.

Your accomplishments during this experience:

Received a GPC card, received system access for financial systems that provide data for the enterprise statements. I will be start to input data into these systems when I am assigned systems to manage on the financial side.

The benefits of participating:

Learning the similarities and differences of business performed in the government versus business performed in the commercial world.

What would you like to say to other students considering a field-related experience?

I would say that it is important to do field-related experience because you want to make sure you will enjoy what you are doing before you spend $40,000 on a degree that you may not use because you don't like that area of business. Sometimes your degree is important when companies look at your resume. If you do not like your classes, a field experience would help you decide whether that degree path is correct for you.

Administration at the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, Summer 2011

photo of crystal whetstone

Crystal Whetstone,
majoring in International Comparative Politics,
graduate student, one quarter in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at Center for Contemporary Arab Studies via The National Council on US-Arab Relations.

Responsibilities during co-op:
  • Obtained internship through the National Council on U.S. Arab Relations which required attendance at seminars and site visits. These included presentations by Tony Blair, meetings with ambassadors, an excursion to the Saudi Embassy, a visit to the Egyptian Defense Office, and several lectures at Carnegie Endowment, the Palestine Center, and the Women's Foreign Policy Group
  • Assisted a supervisor with a weeklong workshop for high school teachers that sought to integrate Arab perspectives into US school curricula. Designed the cover of the binder used for the workshop, compiled biographies of guest lecturers, and put together materials for the workshop. Also attended the workshop sessions which covered art in the Middle East, history of Islam, Arab-American literature, post-America Iraq, and the role of social media in the recent revolutions in the Middle East
  • Wrote a pice for the Center's newsletter based on an interview with a Georgetown University student
  • Conducted a basic literature review to organize research for a professor's book on the Iraq War
  • Analyzed articles for relevant themes used for a paper on the Wikimedia Public Policy Initiative
Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

Making great contacts, learning how to function in an office / professional atmosphere, learning about computers / technology

Claims Specialist at FlexBank Administrators, Summer 2011

Sara Nelson,
majoring in Business Management,
senior, one quarter in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at FlexBank Administrators.

Responsibilities during co-op:

During my co-op employment as a Claims Specialist, I performed many responsibilities. These responsibilities included daily claims entry, scanning and organizing various documents, training season help on various clerical duties, and answering client phone calls.

Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

The most beneficial aspect of participating in the co-op was the administrative knowledge and skills that I am gaining and will be able to use in my future career.

e-Marketing at Midmark, Summer 2011

Qin Wang,
majoring in Business Administration,
graduate student, 5 quarters in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at Midmark.

Responsibilities during co-op:

Understand the process of determining the KPI [Key Performance Indicator] for the company, and how to use the benchmark and the target for individual products to measure current progress towards organizational goals.

Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

This internship provides me the opportunity to translate classroom theories into practical applications on the job.

Hiring and Recruiting at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Spring 2011

Kelly Snyder,
majoring in Public Administration,
graduate student, two quarters in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at Aeronautical Systems Center, Wright Patterson Air Force Base.

Responsibilities during co-op:
  1. Maintain intern database.
  2. Track monthly and quarterly reports.
  3. Conduct Winter Wingman Day.
  4. Conduct research on PME credit information.
  5. Attend meetings regarding the intern process between directorates.
  6. Coordination of the Water Club Fund.
Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

I gained insight on the workings of the Aeronautical Systems Center in regards to the hiring of program managers. Additionally I have worked closely with the AQM intern team and have been exposed to the process of recruitment, interviewing, and hiring of soon-to-be program managers. I have enjoyed my work with AQM.

Program Management and Compliance at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Winter 2011

Caleb Musselman,
majoring in Communication,
junior, two quarters in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at Wright Patterson Air Force Base.

Responsibilities during co-op:

My basic responsibility is to serve as a compliance operator. I keep our program managers accountable while they advance our programs. Aside from that, most of my time has been devoted to training. I've taken classes online through Defense Acquisition University as well as attended several classes located on base.

Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

I have gained experience working in an office setting. Every job I've had up to this point has been a job where I interact with my co-workers or customers. This co-op has allowed me to learn how to interact with authority figures through getting more involved with what's goin on around my office. My responsibilities put me in contact with some high-ranking personnel. In the past I would report to people with more experience, but in my position here they have report to me. My position has helped me be more comfortable and confident when these individuals have questions for me.

International Sales and Contracts at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Spring 2010

David Beach,
majoring in International Relations,
senior, four quarters in the co-op program at time of testimonial.
Employed at Aeronautical Systems Center, Wright Patterson Air Force Base.

Responsibilities during co-op:

Over the past year, I have had the wonderful opportunity to work for the United States Air Force in Foreign Military Sales at Wright Patterson AFB. What that means is that I have spent the past year working the US government side of C-17 sales and sustainment support to foreign partners. I have had the occasion to take part in a number of significant new business efforts such as those to Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, India, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait. I have often attended meetings with senior military leaders and have developed working relationships with a number of international people. I have also worked as part of the team responsible for writing the contract for the next ten years of sustainment support for the entire C-17 fleet (both US and foreign partner aircraft) with a specific focus on properly representing the interests of our international partners.

One of my main responsibilities is the preparation of briefings and presentations for senior leadership, which have been presented to a wide range of leaders including the Colonel responsible for the C-17 platform and to a three-star General in charge of all new acquisition in the Air Force to DSCA, the lead security cooperation agency in the Department of Defense.

I would be remiss if I failed to mention that in my position education / training has always been treated as a top priority and one of my main responsibilities. My supervisor has taken an expressed interest in my career succession and has granted me countless opportunities to get ahead through online training and formal certifications.

Most beneficial aspect of being enrolled in the co-op program?

The most beneficial aspect of my participation in the Wright State Co-op Program has been the chance to gain real-world experience in a career path that fits not only my major, but also matches my career aspirations. I came back to school for the expressed purpose of working in the international political arena and this position has served as a springboard into the job I've always wanted. I never intended on working for the Department of Defense, but the knowledge I have gained here will be invaluable as I progress toward my ultimate career goals. I have thoroughly enjoyed this experience and would recommend this experience to anyone interested in working hard to secure future career opportunities.