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Summer internship includes opportunity for community care

While many Trine University students complete summer internships to gain practical experience, one student was able to serve the community as well.

Jack Oaks, a mechanical engineering major from Fort Wayne, is serving as a metallurgical engineering intern in the cold mill at Steel Dynamics Butler Flat Roll Division.

“This is my second summer at Steel Dynamics, but last year I was in the casting department instead of the cold mill,” he said.

When Oaks’ supervisor at SDI told him about the company’s participation in the annual United Way Day of Caring, he wanted to be part of it.

“Northeast Indiana is where I grew up, and I have grown to care deeply about the area,” he said. “Both SDI and Trine also do a great job of teaching the importance of giving back. I am proud to be a part of both organizations.”

The June 25 event encompassed 50 events at sites across DeKalb County. More than 600 people participated.

Teams from Steel Dynamics constructed ramps and steps for families in need. Despite rainfall throughout the day, Oaks’ team was able to complete a ramp and connect it to the front deck for a Garrett family with an elderly woman in the home. They also landscaped mulch beds around the front and sides of the house.

“I did a little bit of everything,” Oaks said. “I added fill dirt in around the concrete portion of the ramp, sodded the filled-in area, mulched underneath the wood portion of the ramp, and installed the decking of the incline portion of the ramp.”

Oaks said it was rewarding to see the family’s reaction to the completed project.

“It warmed my heart to see our hard work put a smile on their faces,” he said.

  • Oaks

    Oaks - Trine University mechanical engineering major Jack Oaks, pictured in back, works with Emily Marciniak and Jon Miller of Steel Dynamics, Inc. They were part of a team that built a ramp for a DeKalb County family during the United Way Day of Caring. (Photo by Sue Carpenter / KPC Media Group)

  • Team

    Team - This team of workers from Steel Dynamics, Inc., built a ramp for a Garrett family during the United Way Day of Caring in DeKalb County.

  • Ramp

    Ramp - The team from SDI built this ramp during the United Way Day of Caring.

  • Ramp

    Ramp - The team from SDI built this ramp during the United Way Day of Caring.

  • Flowers

    Flowers - The SDI team also landscaped mulch beds around the Garrett home.