In the third and final post of our intern recap series, we talk to IT Intern Michael Cyr. It takes a village to keep a construction business turning and without IT, we would be in a world of hurt. With a growing staff—and growing to-do lists—the IT team welcomed Michael with open arms.
As the first ever GLY IT Intern, Michael’s position differed from the typical Project Engineer Intern role common to most construction companies. As a graduating senior just finishing his degree in IT and Administrative Management, Michael participated in a wide array of projects over the summer, some being team-wide and others on his own. Instead of saying good-bye in September, IT invited Michael to stay on-board over the next year while he obtains his Master’s Degree.
MICHAEL CYR | IT INTERN
Central Washington University: IT [focus on Cybersecurity] + Administrative Management
What were your responsibilities? Describe a typical day.
I stayed busy replying to emails and following up with people to ensure ongoing communication with my projects. At times I had to look into solutions for technical issues around the office, assist with Excel, schedule meetings, develop and maintain features within our SharePoint site, and ensure business continuity with projects I implemented.
Who was a big help during your time here? How so?
Everyone on the incredibly brilliant IT team helped in a unique way. Being a team of five, each individual has a specialty. IT Director Andy Hough was my go-to person for help relating to any task at hand. Andy is a problem solver and is the logic behind guiding our team through any roadblock. Former GLY Business Analyst and Excel Wizard, Nicole Johnson, helped me in creating, modifying, and re-organizing data. She has the ability to understand data and data flows like the back of her hand. Bob Cunningham and Joel Johnson are in charge of maintaining and developing the IT Infrastructure, and they were a brilliant resource for any projects or issues related to my computer networking needs. As my desk neighbor, I often approached Gabe with questions relating to just about everything. He is extremely knowledgeable and often provided me with useful tips, tricks, and how-tos. Overall, there was always someone I could approach when I needed support.
What did you hope to accomplish or learn during your internship? Did you develop new goals throughout the process?
Before accepting the internship, Andy and I met to discuss our expectations of each other. This first meeting set the path that I would follow after accepting the internship. My goals quickly developed once I grasped an understanding of my duties, and Andy was swift to assign me to some projects that IT needed to complete. Looking back, my goals changed almost daily. I challenged myself to figure out new ways around issues and take on more tasks as the demand for projects increased.
Did anything surprise you?
The most surprising thing was how our projects affected almost every aspect of GLY. It was important for us to maintain computer and network availability to offices and jobsites so business could continue without any interruption. This meant we had to ensure business continuity, especially when upgrading programs and systems.
What did you find most interesting?
I was as green as they come in regards to construction, so I was extremely thrilled to learn all about it!
What did you find most challenging?
Learning the computer tools, some of which I had never used before. I challenged myself to learn them as fast as I could because I figured I would not be of much use until I was comfortable using them all on my own. After work, I watched video tutorials online and read documentation to get acquainted with them. I also tried to be proactive and ask questions about my team members’ daily tasks to learn even more about the tools they used. I think this challenge ended up contributing to a successful internship.
What was the best part about your internship?
I enjoyed the balance between a fun work environment and the hands-on, applicable experience. Because of this balance, I accomplished a lot more as I enjoyed every minute of what I was working on. I couldn’t have asked for a better team!
Did the experience help you decide what you wanted to focus on in the next year or in your next internship or job?
Absolutely! This internship confirmed my desire to be in the IT field. With technology constantly developing, each new task I worked on provided me with another puzzle to wrap my mind around.
How did you find this internship?
The IT program at CWU requires students to participate in an internship in order to graduate. My entire internship search prior to finding GLY kept resulting in dead ends. Most firms only hired third year students [juniors] and I was a senior. I ended up finding this internship because a family friend of a GLY project manager connected me with Andy. The rest is history!