Not Your Average Internship

August 18, 2023

600 interns. 130 universities. 1 incredible summer internship experience. Interning at Caterpillar provides college students with great opportunities, hands-on experiences, and endless networking. Get to know some current interns who are a part of the next generation of Caterpillar.

Ellie Larson, Logistics Engineering Intern

University: Iowa State University
Major: Industrial Engineering (B.S.) Business Administration (MBA)

Ellie has been with Caterpillar for over a year, working two summers and through the school year. She now interns in the Product Support and Logistics division in Morton, Illinois.

“As an intern at Caterpillar, they let you do the work and physically see the impact it is making,” Ellie said. She is currently working on automating a kitting assembly line in the Champaign facility. Her job is to analyze parts data to verify potential sub-kits that could be autonomously bagged together to create complete kits. This leads to improved efficiency and reallocation of staffing to areas in need. 

Last summer, Ellie was in Decatur as a Manufacturing Engineering Intern. “I have loved seeing the diversity within the company and the different roles I can pursue. Previously, I had the opportunity to work on the shop floor, and now in logistics, I see more behind-the-scenes work. I loved both positions so much and it just shows how much us interns can grow and learn here,” she said. 

When asked what excites her about interning at Caterpillar, she shared, “When interning at the Decatur facility, I remember I felt so excited knowing these quality machines were making a real difference in the world.”

Ellie Larson
Dylan Scheller

Dylan Scheller, Motor Grader NPI Intern

University: Colorado State University
Major: Mechanical Engineering

Dylan is located in Decatur, Illinois, in the Earthmoving division. This is his first internship ever and started at the beginning of the summer. 

“I’m not a traditional student and my journey has been difficult, so to have an internship with a company like Caterpillar has been a major accomplishment,” he said. “I’ve had really cool opportunities such as going on multiple facility tours, a tour of a Bridgestone Tire factory, a field follow visit to Nebraska, and driving dozers at PPG for A Day in the Dirt.”

Dylan attended Colorado State’s career fair and met a Caterpillar representative during an event called ‘Evening with Industry’. He credits this experience as being the reason he pursued this internship opportunity. 

“This may sound corny, but at the Decatur location, there is a cornfield across from the entrance of the parking lot. When I started my internship, the field was full of tiny sprouts that had just come out of the ground. Now, the corn has grown to full height. The growth of the corn has felt like a parallel to the growth I’ve experienced at Caterpillar through the people I’ve met and the opportunities I’ve had this summer,” Dylan shared.

Kayla Burnett, Accounting Intern

University: Bradley University
Major: Accounting

Kayla is an intern in the Global Finance Services division in Peoria, Illinois. This is now her second summer internship with Caterpillar. She plans to go for a third while finishing her master’s degree.  

“My experience at Caterpillar has been very heartwarming,” Kayla said. “This place keeps me coming back because of the community. They do a great job of bringing the interns together to network, and even the current employees want to get to know me. They want to see me succeed, and they care about my experience. I consider that a luxury because I don’t think you find a community like this anywhere else.”

Kayla was first introduced to Caterpillar’s program during a job fair at Bradley. She spoke to current employees and learned about everything Caterpillar has to offer. “They seemed much more enthusiastic and excited to talk to me than the others. I immediately felt a sense of home and comfort,” she shared.

When asked about some of her favorite things about Caterpillar, Kayla said, “They understand you are human. Life happens sometimes and knowing that you have a support system within your work is comforting. I think that is rare. Caterpillar is so accommodating with time zones, virtual work, and letting you create a healthy balance between home and work life.”

Kayla Burnett
Adepeju Adeyinka

Adepeju Adeyinka, Digital and Analytics Intern

University: North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
Major: Data Science and Engineering (master’s degree)

Adepeju is currently in the Innovation and Emerging Technology Strategy division at Cat Digital in Chicago, Illinois.

She found the new opportunity at Caterpillar while attending the National Society of Black Engineers conference. “I met with the happiest people on earth. It was amazing how these beautiful souls represented Caterpillar so spectacularly,” she shared.

She described the family aspect of Caterpillar as being “too noticeable not to perceive” and her experience thus far as “transformative.”

“In my experience here at Caterpillar, I have improved my capabilities through hands-on projects and enhanced my technical skills. I have been exposed to the best business and cultural practices, which have broadened my worldview and cultural sensitivity,” Adepeju said. “Professionally, all the training programs and workshops have and will enable me to wear my professional gear more confidently.”

Zachary Browning, Procurement Intern

University: Brigham Young University 
Major: Supply Chain Management

Zachary began his journey with Caterpillar in April in the Energy and Transportation division in Mossville, Illinois.

“I feel proud to say that I intern at a place like Caterpillar. There are so many opportunities, and I can’t believe the number of people willing to help, mentor and coach me in this journey. I have always felt so welcomed and supported,” he said. 

Throughout his internship, Zachary has been working on and creating projects he is very proud of. He plans to volunteer for Habitat for Humanity by renovating one of their facilities and helping stock home goods. He also created a Skill Share project that allows interns to meet and share their skills with other interns and learn from each other. 

“It’s exciting interning for Caterpillar because I feel like I can chart my own path,” he added. “Having the creative space as an intern to develop projects that make actual impacts is so rewarding.”

Zachary Browning