Research and Development Engineer
Santa Rosa, CA
When I started my internship, my manager had already outlined a short assignment/project that I would be responsible for completing during my summer internship. The assignment was essentially a problem statement; I had to work with a cross-functional team of engineers to define needs, brainstorm concepts, build and test these concepts, and eventually select a final design to move forward with. Having this type of responsibility not only provided me visibility within the organization, but also gave me the opportunity to productively develop my technical and problem solving skills.
Medtronic definitely tries to make sure interns have an easy transition into the program. Many of the interns are provided accommodations and housed together in the same apartment building. We also organize a lot of social events (Twins games, outdoor picnics, sports leagues) and opportunities to network with business leaders throughout the summer.
Going through the internship made the transition easier to being a full-time employee. For example, I was already familiar with many of the acronyms and standards within the company, which is always a little tricky when you're first starting off. It's also great knowing a few more faces around the office too!
On a typical day, I'm constantly on my feet. People may tend to think of engineering as more of a "desk" job, but that's not the case at Medtronic. To innovate and pursue the best possible solution, it's important to take a hands-on approach to problem solving, which is welcomed and encouraged here. I am constantly asking myself the question, "why or how did I get X, and what happens if I change Y?" As engineers, we are given the freedom to ask and explore these questions. It's important to have a solid understanding of how a given process or design works and we do our best to make sure that job is done.
I appreciate the people most at Medtronic. We hire some of the brightest scientists, engineers, and professionals to work on our teams, so there is enormous potential in the scope of problems we can work on. Cross-functional collaboration is encouraged so there isn't a "silo" mentality between our manufacturing, engineering, or quality functions, as an example. All of these functions are encouraged to start working together early in the product development phase.
Santa Rosa is located in the heart of Wine Country, and there are few other places where you can go skiing one day and head out to the beach the next. Medtronic Santa Rosa is also only about an hour drive from San Francisco across the Golden Gate, so it's easy to take advantage of all the events and culture that the city has to offer.
A majority of Medtronic's growth is currently in international and emerging markets. While most of our therapies have typically been targeted toward developed markets, we recognize there is an increasing need in developing markets for our therapies. Innovation in this space is seen on many fronts to increase value to patients and physicians by way of technology and business model innovation, to name a few.
I worked up the ranks in Boy Scouts to become an Eagle Scout. Along with learning how to survive a night out camping in the blistering Michigan winters, scouting taught me leadership skills and demonstrated the importance for community service which has carried me through to today.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world." – Albert Einstein