Windy city reverie

Oct 21, 2005

For Kettering seniors William Diamond and Shami Hussain, professional co-op jobs with UPS in Chicago help them envision bright futures in engineering.

Join us:
Wednesday, Nov. 2
Chicago area
Kettering alumni and friends, along with current and prospective students,
will meet at 6:30 p.m. at UPS CACH, One UPS Way in Hodgkins, Ill.,
to tour the facility and hear comments by Kettering President Stan Liberty
and Albert Wright, UPS global vice president of engineering.
Call 800-955-4464, ext. 7331. The event is free and open to the public.

The small town of Fenton, Mich., has shrunk just a little bit in the eyes of Kettering senior William Diamond. After transferring to Kettering from Mott Community College two years ago, the Industrial Engineering major secured a co-op with UPS in Chicago and loves every second of it.

"Chicago is a great city," he said, adding, "when I'm finished at Kettering, I want to find a job in the city or in another big city and go from there." Today, Kettering has 65 students working in co-op positions in Chicago and hopes to attract more Chicago-based companies to hire students.

"The school's reputation speaks
for itself." - Shami Hussain

Shami Hussain also loves Chicago, but perhaps for slightly different reasons. He was born and raised near the city, attended high school in Palitine, Ill., then enrolled at the University of Iowa. Eventually, he came back home to the Chicago area, transferred to Loyola University, but found out about Kettering through a family friend. He checked the school out online and found the co-op program intriguing. Soon afterward, he transferred to Kettering as an Electrical Engineering major, obtained a co-op with UPS in Chicago, and hasn't looked back since.

"When you can apply what you learn
in the classroom and lab to your job,
you learn it much more quickly."
William Diamond

"Kettering has been a great experience," he said. "You can't beat the co-op or gaining two years of professional experience before graduating. The school's reputation speaks for itself."

Diamond agreed. "I came here for two reasons: because of the University's reputation as one of the best engineering schools in the country and for the co-op," he said.

The two also note that the teacher to student ratio (currently 1 to 12) and the chance to have more one-on-one interaction with faculty and staff make it easier to handle the rigorous academics. "The nice thing is that we also have more chances to participate in actual research projects and hands-on experiences in the labs," Hussain added.

"We take what we actually learn immediately to work," Diamond said. "When you can apply what you learn in the classroom and lab to your job, you learn it much more quickly. I don't know of any other school that can offer students this kind of experience."

During their co-op terms, the two undertake many responsibilities generally geared toward individuals with engineering degrees already in hand. For example, Diamond's position requires him to analyze important equipment, staffing and logistics issues, as well as conducting examinations on equipment that failed while operating in the field or in plants. Hussain's duties include work on such projects as the incorporation of a large exhaust fan system in the UPS Chicago plant, which required him to calculate budget requirements, examine blueprints and work with vendors to obtain formal bids.

Both believe that if more kids in high school knew about Kettering, they would apply immediately. "I know of at least 40 to 50 kids at my high school who would probably apply just because of the co-op alone," Hussain said.

The list of positive things about the institution could go on and on, Diamond said. But life at Kettering is not always about school. Both students are heavily involved in the intramural sports program at Kettering and enjoy hanging out with friends at establishments around Flint.

Chicago #s:
Co-ops: 65
Alumni: 376

They also acknowledge that while they are unsure where they will be in five years, they have received the start they needed to go on to successful careers and lives. Both expect to graduate sometime in 2006 and they are considering working toward their MBA degrees at some point.

While at Kettering, they've enjoyed their classes and all of their professors, and specifically point to Dr. Pete Gheresus, professor of Manufacturing Engineering, David Foster of the Electrical Engineering Dept. and Dr. Corrine Coniglio, assistant professor of Liberal Studies, as some of their favorite faculty members who truly care for students and their success.

Learn more about
Kettering University professional co-op
UPS CACH, the Chicago Area Consolidation Hub,
was built in 1991. More information.

Written by Gary Erwin
(810) 762-9538