Return of the Interns

Annually, student interns across the country jump at the chance to hone their real-world science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills with a Northrop Grumman internship. Some of those interns — including Amanda, who interns in San Diego, California, and Aastha, who interns in Melbourne, Florida – are returning for another internship to learn more about what Northrop Grumman does and possible future career opportunities.

white woman in cap and gown

Amanda and Aastha credit the combination of learning experiences and supportive colleagues as what keeps them coming back to learn more.

“I fell in love with the sense of community at Northrop Grumman and the people that I’ve interned for,” Amanda said.

Amanda is completing her fifth internship at the San Diego Autonomous Design Center of Excellence (SDAD CoE). She has interned at Northrop Grumman since high school, and throughout the pursuit of her bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Montana State University (MSU). A recent graduate, she plans to pursue a master’s degree in innovation and management from MSU this fall.

From a young age, Amanda’s parents encouraged her to pursue a career in engineering. “My parents both have inquisitive engineering mindsets and did a good job of instilling one in me too. They got me interested in figuring out how devices and mechanisms work and problem solving when those things fail,” she said.

Amanda previously interned with the Airworthiness team in San Diego, and she currently works in the Global Hawk Foreign Military Sales Lab there. Amanda said cross-discipline internships at Northrop Grumman have helped her understand program lifecycles. “I’ve worked with the test data that comes out of labs like this, and I’m able to see the flow of data from the lab to airworthiness projects, and it adds a whole new perspective,” she said.

Aastha, a computer science major at Ohio State University is completing her second internship at the Manned Aircraft Design Center of Excellence, echoed Amanda’s sentiment. Her first internship was with the Common Open Mission Systems Architecture (COMSA) team, where she conducted hardware simulations.

Young woman intern wearing Northrop Grumman t-shirt

Aastha realized hardware simulation may not be for her, “understanding hardware was a little bit difficult for me,” she said. However, she has gained a passion for software development from her current internship experience with the Software Development Operations team.

“I’m very excited about what I’m working on because it’s pure software,” she said. “The skills that I’m learning are fast-paced. The projects are very quick, which I enjoy. I’ve discovered I am a software gal through and through.”

Aastha said her experience at Northrop Grumman has been so positive that she can see herself working at the company after she earns her degree and for the long-term. “I would love to be an Integrated Product Team lead or project manager one day,” she said.

For new interns, Amanda advises they ask a lot of questions. “Everyone here has been very willing to sit down and talk with you or get back to you [over email] in order to help you grow.” Amanda and Aastha said new and returning interns are welcomed into the Northrop Grumman community, which, year after year, has helped them identify their passions, hone their skills, and translate their education into real-world projects and hopefully fulfilling STEM careers.

Northrop Grumman interns are Defining Possible every day. Learn more about internships at Northrop Grumman.

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