Meet Team 1 Plastics’ Summer 2019 Interns
Since 2011, Team 1 Plastics, a plastic injection molding company for the mobility industry, has offered summer internships for college students. During the summer of 2019, Team 1 was pleased to have two students from Ferris State University (FSU), Clayton Ameel and Nishant Choudhury, working in the Engineering Department under the supervision of Dave Seedorf, Engineering Manager for Team 1 Plastics. Both students are seniors in the Plastics Engineering program at FSU, and both have already earned an Associates Degree.
Choudhury is a native of Nashik, India, the wine capital of India. After obtaining his Associates Degree in Plastic Mold Technology from CIPET (Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology), he moved to the United States in Fall 2016 to pursue a degree in Plastics Engineering from FSU.
Having gained experience in working with injection molding machines during his schooling in India, Choudhury said that he hoped that the internship at Team 1 Plastics would allow him to “work along side Team 1’s Process Engineers, and to gain as much as knowledge as possible about plastic processing and to understand the functioning of a manufacturing plant.”
In evaluating the internship, Choudhury said, “I got to learn a lot more than I had even expected! It surprised me that on the first day of my internship, I got to operate the machine.” He added, “I learned about plastic processing, project management, how to operate the robots, and I even got to work with the Process Engineer to design an EOAT (End-of-Arm Tool used on a robot). This internship gave me an overview of how a manufacturing company works and helped me understand where I need to focus more in order to reach my goals.”
After graduation from FSU (expected May 2020), Choudhury said that he plans to work for a plastics company to gain some more experience before pursuing his Master’s degree.
Ameel, who expects to graduate from FSU in December 2019, has already acquired a lot of experience in the plastics and automotive industries through internships. The internship at Team 1 this summer was his third internship while pursuing his academic degrees. A native of Marysville, Michigan, Ameel has also attended St. Clair Community College and Grand Rapids Community College.
He said that during his first internship (required for his Associates Degree), he worked in a Prototype Department which “involved injection molding rubber prototype parts for different testing purposes, assembly of the prototype components, compound testing, and prototype lab layout.”
The second internship was at a plastics injection molding company where he rotated through several different departments, including Maintenance, Quality, and Engineering. “I began in the tooling area performing PMs (Preventative Maintenance) and tool repairs. I then worked with the Maintenance crew fixing, replacing, and repairing all types of equipment. I moved to Quality where I was briefly introduced to APQP (Advanced Product Quality Planning) documents and preventative action. Then I worked with the Process Engineers, seeing their day-to-day activity and participating in trials and DOEs (Design of Experiments).”
Ameel said that he was hoping that his internship at Team 1 Plastics this summer would allow him “to learn as much as possible from the Engineering Department as well as other departments at Team 1” and to gain additional experience, focusing on Project Engineering and Project Management – both areas he is interested in pursuing after graduation.
Utilizing his previous work experience, Team 1 Plastics asked Ameel to became part of the New Product Launch team in the Engineering Department, which is responsible for tasks such as developing and adjusting new processes, assisting in project management of on-going tools, attending product launch meetings, and preparing and submitting required documentation.
“Being a part of the Launch Team allowed me to learn and understand what the customer is requiring from Team 1 and how Team 1 can meet those requirements,” Ameel said. “I now know the steps involved from pre-launch to production. This begins with the job being awarded to Team 1, followed by part print review, RFQs (Request for Quotation), tool supplier award, mold design, mold design review, tool build, FOT samples, dimensional layout, CAP studies, Gage R&Rs, engineering changes, PPAP submission and full production. This is all information I was aware of, but until this summer, I did not fully understand the exact process.” He added, “I have learned that communication internally, with customers, and with suppliers is such a crucial part in running a successful business.”
In evaluating his internship with Team 1, Ameel said, “This internship has boosted my confidence in being able to properly manage projects that are presented to me. Each project is different, and knowing how to manage each project leads right into my career goals.”
Both Ameel and Choudhury said that they would recommend an internship at Team 1 Plastics to other students pursuing degrees in the Plastics industry. “The internship program designed by Team 1 is phenomenal!” said Choudhury. “The exposure that I got here was really very good, and the most important thing is that we got hands-on experience.” He added, “Team 1 Plastics is a small family in itself, because people here are so friendly and are always willing to help each other.”
Ameel echoed that sentiment. “I most definitely would recommend this internship to other students. Team 1 has brought me under their wing and treated me like family. Everyone has been so kind and is willing to help and answer any questions I have had. I cannot thank the employees of Team 1 enough for involving me in their day-to-day activities.”