Co-op Highlight: Carly Bohnenblusch | BMW

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Carly Bohnenblusch, a senior in Textile Engineering, is spending the summer of 2014 working at BMW for her 4th co-op rotation. She will return in fall for her last year at NC State. Read below for more information about her 2013 summer at BMW.

Undergraduate Co-op Highlight

Name:  Carly Bohnenblusch

Major:  Textile Engineering – Information Systems Concentration

Minor:  Industrial Engineering

Classification:  Senior

Intended Graduation Date:  May 2015

How many summers have you co-op’d / interned since starting at NC State? 2 Summers and 1 Fall semester

Company / University where you co-op’d / interned / researched this summer & its location:
Summer 2013: Co-op with BMW in Greer, South Carolina

Any previous companies / universities you co-op’d / interned / researched & the dates you interned:
Summer 2012:  The Seven Soft: Software company in RTP NC
Summer 2012:  Polyzen: Biomedical Textile company in Apex NC
Fall 2012:  BMW Greer South Carolina

2013 Summer Co-op

How did you find out about the co-op?
I volunteered at the Engineering Career Fair and while I was there I got to meet several companies on a different level. While broadening my network there, I was introduced to Neal Guthrie (who started the Engineering Career Fair at NC State and now works at BMW) he helped me apply and get an interview with BMW.

What was the process for obtaining the co-op?
Mine was a little different than most. I attended the Engineering Career Fair, as mentioned above, and began communication with Neal mostly through email.  I was called mid-summer for a phone interview.  I was offered a position that would start right away.  Unfortunately I had already accepted and began working with two other companies so had to postpone my start date to August.  This is why I am doing a co-op instead of just a summer internship.  Most students would get an onsite tour and two rounds of interviews before receiving a co-op, my situation was an unusual one.

Describe in a short paragraph what project(s) you worked on:

  1. Management Project:
    1. Organized and Facilitated Training on the new X5 for the BMW North America Representatives
  2. VBA Projects:
    1.  Automated F15 SOP BI Report
    2. Automated a raw data clean up tool
    3. Automated PQM Prioritization tool for series (with other Intern)
    4. Created a T-Car selection tool (with other Intern)
    5. Developed creator files for 6 different ESR Reports
  3. Other Projects:
    1. Visio: Developed 3 separate Launch Process flow diagrams
    2. Created Evaluation Forms for F15 Training and tracked response data
    3. Co-Facilitating a CIP Workshop “T-Car Optimization for QZ Audit”
    4. CIP Training (discuss further down)
  4. Reports:
    1. TS-5 Risk Management
    2. SSA Reporting and Updating
    3. SOP Part Changes
    4. MQI Overview
    5. PQM Problem/Incident tracking
    6. NAEL Flagging

What classes (or experiences) from NC State did you feel were valuable during your co-op?
TE 404/424 Six Sigma:  I utilized a lot of this knowledge during CIPs, training courses and mini projects. TE 110:  A few of my projects required me to use VBA coding and every one of my daily tasks and reports were in excel so having that knowledge helped me stand out from other interns.  I did not get to use my math, physics, statics or circuits knowledge; however I hope to in the future.

What kinds of things, experiences, skills, etc. did you learn on the job that other students might benefit from knowing?
Networking is the most important. The other skills I learned were working in a group, working in a professional environment rather than a classroom, utilizing everyday knowledge just as much as skills learned in school to complete quality work that is also on time.  It is also very important to build relationships with those you work with and work for obviously on a professional level but also to keep them as a contact for later.

What did you like about the working environment of the company?
My team is very friendly and supportive.  They are all really easy to talk to and ask questions.  It is good to be a part of a group that is so close because an individual can ask for your help on something so you’re always getting to work on something new.

What was the best part of your co-op?
Six Sigma related items.  I got to attend a training called CIP (continuous improvement processes) which is basically an accelerated green belt class.  I really enjoy anything six sigma related and I worked in the quality department so this was perfect.  During this training we had to split into groups and were given a situation in the plant that could be made more efficient.  Using our green belt skills we had to generate a proposal using the DMAIC process.  Since I had prior knowledge and training on this topic I was made a project lead and helped older, more experienced employees complete these tasks.  I got to act like I was one of the teachers of the training and I really enjoyed it.  I hope to do something six sigma related in my career.  Taking this training enables me to become CIP certified when I return (only ~10% of BMW employees are CIP certified) – another great thing to come of out this training.