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Calhoun SET internship program a hands-on winner for students

HUNTSVILLE — On-the-job-training doesn’t get the credit it deserves – just ask two students enrolled in the System Engineering Technology (SET) Internship program at Calhoun Community College.

Both have been hired as interns on Boeing’s Ground-based Midcourse Defense program after developing the skills needed for the job by interning for Victory Solutions, a Huntsville-based engineering solutions company.

The SET Internship provides students with the opportunity to gain relevant modeling and database integration work experience, an employer sponsored security clearance (if needed), and skills that typically take a minimum of 6 years to obtain in academia/industry.

Companies like Victory Solutions who offer internship opportunities to students, are helping to bridge a gap between academia, hands-on experience, and the workforce, especially in high-demand fields such as model-based systems engineering.

SET interns and graduates will provide critical modeling skills to enhance efforts to transition from a “paper” to a “digitally” based product development life cycle.

Developed by the Institute for Digital Enterprise Advancement (IDEA) and derived from Calhoun’s two-year computer information system associate of applied science degree, SET includes a focus on work-based learning that complements associated academic classes.

SET Internships let employers better determine the most efficient way to bring those skill sets into system engineering organizations and provide feedback to improve evolving IDEA/Calhoun curriculum.

SET students receive academic instruction at Calhoun and meet and interact with potential employers.

Fifteen SET students had eight to 10 minutes to interview and interact with 12 participating companies and government organizations during an IDEA-hosted Speed Networking event last fall at Calhoun’s Huntsville campus.

Both interns hired by Victory Solutions were introduced to the positions at that event.

SET interns can work either full- or part-time over the next six months, depending on their class load and technical work requirements.

Ron Porter, IDEA vice president said, “We are pleased with the initial group of modelers coming out of the SET program and would like to thank Victory Solutions and Boeing as well as the other employers who are actively seeking to employ the SET interns.

“The firsthand, work and learn experience is a crucial step for the students in their education. We are pleased to partner with Calhoun Community College to offer this new skillset.”

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