The Texas Panhandle is not a place known for being a huge technology hub, but that does not mean that there are not job and internship opportunities open to WTAMU technology students.
“It (technology) is a good area to be in,” Coordinator of Experiential Education Program Steve Sellars said.
Local companies such as Bell Helicopter, Conoco Philips, McCoy Myers and B&W Pantex offer internships in computer science, computer information and engineering. The Buffs Jobs site offers a comprehensive list for students.“Even in a tight market, businesses have trouble finding competent technology workers,” Sellars said.
Student Works Program Administrator Connie Olsen of B&W Pantex said the company likes to get as many I.T., science and mechanical engineering students as its budget allows.
“They can perform short-term, temporary assignments under the guidance of an experienced technical expert, and we can evaluate their work performance to determine if we would be interested in hiring them full-time after they graduate,” Olsen said.
Sellars said Pantex’s strategy shows why most businesses give internships; to find new full-time employees.
WT alumnus Joe Nash, McCoy Myers’ liason to WT, said the company hopes to show students that if they are hard workers, they do not have to go far for a good job.
“We give internships hoping that students who work for us will still be working for us 10 years after they graduate,” Nash said.
If a student wants an internship at a business or company that is not listed, though, Sellars said not to worry.
“There are posted internships and then there is a sort of hidden internship market,” he said.
A company or business may not have their internships posted for a few reasons, Sellars said. The business may be small; the internships may not be open to all parties online, or other reasons may exist. Even if a business does not have any internship open, this does not mean the business would be against starting one for the right student, Sellars said.
“Call, write, call,” Sellars said. “Nine times out ten, they will probably tell you ‘Oh send it [a resume] to such and such.’”
Should a student find the idea of contacting the company on their own intimidating, Sellar said he and others in Career Services can help.
“If I can’t help you, there is still a good chance that all of us pooling together can,” Sellars said.