Mapping out a Career in Geomatics

"We love having interns. Every summer we teach Geomatics Engineering students like Cristina (her reflection below) how to use the latest tech and applications for real projects. ...And we agree Cristina, it was a perfect fit." - John Davis, PLS, KPFF Associate and Portland's first survey intern back in the day

Internship with KPFF
By: Cristina Rubio

This summer I had the pleasure to work for KPFF Consulting Engineers located in Portland, Oregon. And yes it was absolutely astonishing and an experience I cannot put a price on.

As a sophomore, I applied to my first internship, underwent my first Skype interview, and got hired at my first job out of state. The saying “It is not what you know but who you know” is incredibly true. If it weren’t for volunteering at the 2016 California Land Surveyors Association conference I would have never ran into PLS, Survey Manager, and Principal at KPFF Troy Tetsuka, who informed me about the company and potential internship.

As their survey intern, I had an incredible time being out on the field as well as working in the office. I commenced with little expertise in AutoCAD, and terminated with a significantly improved set of skills. Unlike school where we utilize Leica instruments and software, I had the opportunity to familiarize myself with Trimble products. I worked on A.L.T.A/N.S.P.S. L and title surveys, topographic surveys, legal descriptions, LIDAR data, sewage scoping, locating property corners, just to name a few.

KPFF offered about 10 intern training sessions where three civil interns and I were taught about different aspects of the company: due diligence, liabilities, construction, right of way acquisition, public involvement, permitting, bidding and the list goes on. I was part of the survey crew for jobs out in the University of Portland, Salem, and several locations in the downtown area. I've always been a visual and hands on individual, so it was great to apply the theory we learn in class into real life practice.

I thank all my coworkers who helped teach and enrich my knowledge. I specifically thank Kellie Leblond and my Project Manager John Davis for interviewing and making the decision to hire me. KPFF’s core values: Excellence, Trust, Relationships, Stability, and Passion were values that were always maintained and the main reason I chose this company. I believed KPFF was my perfect fit.


Originally published in ForeSight! Magazine Spring 2017, Fresno State Geomatics Engineering

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