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Allow us to introduce our first intern:

Caleb Cheung!

Caleb is a senior at UCLA and is majoring in Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Where are you from? Where did you grow up?

I’ve lived in South Pasadena all my life and went to high school in Pasadena.

How did you decide on your university for school?

UCLA was among my top college choices because of the prestige of their engineering program and convenient location.

How did you decide on your major? Why are you interested in pursuing a career in construction?

I’ve always exceled in math, and I developed a passion for physics and science in high school which led me to choose engineering. I came into UCLA as an electrical engineering major, but I decided to switch to civil engineering my sophomore year as I realized my greater appreciation for construction and structural design.

What initially interested you about the Total-Western Internship Program?

As I was applying to various internships, Total-Western’s website stood out to me because of its clean look and how much I aligned with the company’s progressive design build approach. I also appreciated the emphasis on sustainability and lean construction that the company is striving toward. Interning for a smaller company with a tight-knit community was important to me as well, and so far I haven’t been disappointed!

How’s it going so far?

I’ve loved all of it! I’ve gained so many valuable skills and learned so much new information. I’m grateful for how much thought and effort has been put into this internship program, especially with it being only its first year.

What are you enjoying most?

I enjoy the Friday sessions where I get to see the other interns and gain some focused training. It’s awesome meeting each new presenter and hearing about their expertise, knowledge, and experiences in the field and within TWI.

What job site are you currently at?

I’ve been assigned to Newlight Technologies with Miguel, which hasn’t started yet, so I go with him to other job sites as needed. Miguel is very patient with me and I’ve learned a lot simply by watching him and helping where I can.

What do you hope to gain by the time your internship concludes?

The biggest thing I would like to walk away with is clarity and knowing more about what I want to do. I’m trying to learn and do as much as I can because that’s the only way to figure out what kind of work I like. And, of course, technical skills and field knowledge are always a plus.

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Thanks, Caleb, for sharing your journey with us! We’ll check back in with him at the end of the program – stay tuned!