Pratik Pic(1)Pratik Pednekar is a chemical engineering Ph.D. graduate student at West Virginia University (WVU) with a focus on modeling and simulation of key equipment and plants in the integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plant for condition monitoring and to diagnose faults. With graduation slated for early 2016, he can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Graduate work can be challenging, especially toward the end of a project. From finishing a thesis, to completing research and reports, to writing papers, there isn’t much time left in a given day. So, when MATRIC approached Pratik the summer of 2015 about a chemical engineering internship, he hesitated, but only for a moment, as an internship isn’t a traditional step for a graduate student to take, especially towards the end of the project.

“When I came to know of the internship, I was very excited! I did some research into what MATRIC does, and I quickly realized that this is very much on the lines of what I want to do,” Pednekar said. “The only thing I was hesitant about was whether I would be able to do well in the internship while, at the same time, making progress towards my graduate degree!”

Pednekar is part of the MATRIC University, a recently formalized internship program where MATRIC recruits the best and brightest students to join the team for a semester or more.

He continued, “It has been challenging from a time techno-economic-chemical-design-technology-improvement perspective, but the internship has been well worth it, and I have enjoyed adapting the skills I have from grad school in a professional setting.” From working on numerous projects, to quickly making contribution to the teams, to getting face-time with clients, Pednekar feels that he was able to develop a new set of skills that he wouldn’t have learned otherwise.

“Interning at MATRIC was an incredible experience,” said Pednekar. “Not only did I learn a tremendous amount, but I was truly part of the team. My accomplishments were not only recognized by the highest levels in the organization but also shared with clients.”

“We find that not only are we helping students broaden their thinking, skills and experience, but also that they’re helping us think differently and solve problems in different ways,” said Steve Hedrick, president and chief executive officer, MATRIC. “It’s a win-win for everyone.”

— To learn more about MATRIC University or to apply for a future internship, contact MATRIC Communications.