Student Engineers Learn How They Can Help Build the Grid of the Future
Robert Maystrovich has a degree in microelectronics engineering, but one of his first jobs at Southern California Edison was in the mobile home park meter conversion program.
Electrical engineer Laura Quesada is using new technology to pinpoint problems in the electrical grid, limiting the need for physical inspections.
“People look at this and they keep asking, ‘What is this? It’s so cool,’” said Quesada of the high tech piece of equipment.
Civil engineer Sara Villegas is analyzing roads and other sites to see if they can handle the heavy equipment used to service power substations.
Maystrovich, Quesada and Villegas were among a group of SCE engineers on hand to explain the diverse range of work at the utility from distribution engineering to automation and advanced technology.
“Before I joined Edison, I just knew it was a power company,” Villegas said. “On the job, I learned there’s a wider range of work than just electrical engineering.”
Learning about these kinds of opportunities and the chance to work on the grid of the future was eye-opening for students attending a recent engineering open house hosted by SCE and California Polytechnic State University, Pomona.
“I learned about the smart grid,” said Ashley Kaiser, a sophomore in electrical engineering at Cal Poly Pomona. “I wasn’t really aware of that and it piqued my interest."
Angela Delgado, manager of SCE’s college recruitment team, said the open house is one way SCE showcases its engineering internships and jobs for students who may know little about the power industry.
“It exposes students who otherwise might not consider a career in the utility industry to the wide array of opportunities at SCE for engineers,” she said.
Delgado said the company is always looking for talent among science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) college majors, noting that 65 percent of the jobs for new recruits require an engineering degree. SCE plans to hire about 130 students this year, primarily for summer internships.
Open houses give the company a chance to talk about SCE’s efforts to be in the forefront of a changing industry that is using solar, electric vehicles, smart devices and other new technology to transform the power system.
“Engineers will help drive that technology to power the grid of the future,” Delgado said.
For more information about careers at SCE and Edison International: edisonjobs.com.