Internship Successes/Challenges

In working with Central Electric the past three weeks I have had exposure to multiple departments in the company.  I have spent time shadowing Marketing, Billing/Accounting, Warehousing, Purchasing, Plant Accounting, Community Programs and Services, IT, Customer Service, HR, and Engineering.  All of the activities I have observed will be transformed into lessons in my classroom this upcoming school year.  I believe I will be able to explain exactly what an electric cooperative is as well as the many departments that have career opportunities for my students.  I have had the privilege of spending time with enthusiastic employees of the cooperative that have shown me how their cohesiveness has established a business that has succeeded for the past 75 years.  Explanations have been presented during these few weeks that have explained what is electricity, where does it come from, how is it distributed to its members, what materials are needed to create electrical lines and connections, and how the members and contractors are billed.  The knowledge I have obtained will allow me to create enlightening lessons dealing with career opportunities as well as lessons dealing with the finances of a business.  There has been information that I will also be able to present to my students for different activities as well as employees who have volunteered to come to my classroom to explain their jobs as well as demonstrate their daily responsibilities.  I believe this will be beneficial in exposing my students to potential career opportunities to which they may not have been previously exposed.

Some challenges I feel I may experience are my students may feel as if they are not eligible for some of the careers I will be introducing.  I will introduce educational opportunities at Nash Community College in Rocky Mount, NC that may open doors in the electrical engineering field.  This is a community college that is 1 ½ hours east of Sanford but completion of the program can present employment chances for the graduates.  In addition, I feel there may be challenges sue to the fact that I am business teacher presenting information dealing with the electrical field which is science-based but I will create lessons that will allow me to be a cross-curricular educator.

Day 2-Riding with Eddie

Today was our first day out of the office-ROAD TRIP!! I was advised that we would be traveling to Lee, Chatham, Harnett, and Moore County substations. Every evening as the sun sets, we take for granted the “flick of the switch” to illuminate our homes. But how exactly does that happen? Today Eddie Oldham escorted me all over Lee, Chatham, Harnett, and Moore counties to explain exactly how this process works. Little did I know that Central Electric does not make their own electricity. They actually purchase it from Duke Energy and then provide the electric service to their members of the cooperative. The power is then sent to substations and distributed throughout their service areas. Through an intricate maze of transformers, wires, breakers, and meters the service is provided. Electricity is definitely not something to play with. The voltage that is transmitted through those wires is enough to kill you! From these electrical poles are many different safeguards to not only protect the linemen but there are systems in place that protect against large scale outages as well. Central Electric lines have power distributed through three lines (each pole is connected to a breaker box) to stop the flow of electricity in case of an emergency. The day was filled with valuable information such as the difference between above ground and underground electric service, residential and commercial services, as well as learning about the parts that are used in wiring transformers, telephone poles, and wiring required to provide services to homes and businesses in the service area. Today was filled with many topics that were not familiar however I really enjoyed the information I received today and look forward to the additional knowledge I will be gaining.