Making An Impression: LSU IE Senior Interns with Northrop Grumman
September 10, 2020
BATON ROUGE, LA – For many college students, summer internship opportunities were lost amid the chaos of COVID-19. Luckily for LSU Industrial Engineering major Jennafer Zimmerman, she was able to complete her internship with Northrop Grumman, though it didn’t take her to the beautiful port city of Baltimore, Md., as originally planned.
Looking to gain more IE experience before starting her senior year at LSU, Zimmerman did a Google search for internships at Northrop Grumman, an American global aerospace and defense technology company based in Falls Church, Va., that has 90,000 employees and brings in $30 billion annually. After applying for an internship, she received an email from the company, completed a phone interview, and was chosen as the first-ever LSU Engineering student to be part of Northrop Grumman’s internship program.
“I didn’t get to go into an office or move to Baltimore for the summer as planned,” Zimmerman said. “Instead, Northrop Grumman shipped me a laptop and I worked from home in Huntsville, Ala. I never met any of my coworkers in person, but instead got to know them through Skype calls and emails. I was still able to conduct meaningful work and learn a ton, especially about adapting in an unknown environment, and had a great experience.”
Zimmerman worked in the supply chain sector at Northrop Grumman and supported several projects during her internship, the primary one being the development of an artificial intelligence technology/supplier database for suppliers in Australia. She utilized the Agile Process Flow concept to develop and complete phase one of the project. She was also able to participate in a system proposal for a program with the Australian Department of Defence and gain exposure to Northrop Grumman’s model-based engineering projects.
“I also assisted my mentors with odds and ends when the need arose,” she said.
One such mentor was Keith Mason, who leads the Northrop Grumman Mission Systems Sector Global Supply Chain International Sourcing and Strategy Group in Linthicum, Md.
“Jennafer was rated a top performer in our talent review,” Mason said. “She represented LSU and made a lasting impression on the team. We were extremely pleased with her performance.”
Zimmerman says the best part about her internship was creating an Agile Process Flow and seeing how efficient it was. She credits her LSU IE term projects with helping her prepare to receive general instructions and problem solve during her internship at Northrop Grumman.
After graduating in May 2021, Zimmerman would like to continue working in the defense/aerospace industry while working on her master’s degree. Whether or not that involves working for Northrop Grumman remains to be seen. However, Zimmerman highly recommends its internship program to other LSU students and Mason hopes to see other LSU Engineering students and graduates apply as well.
“We welcome LSU students and graduates to visit our careers site for internships and employment in engineering and supply chain,” Mason said. “It was a pleasure having Jennafer on the team this summer.”
To apply for a job with Northrop Grumman, visit https://www.northropgrumman.com/careers/.
Contact: Libby Haydel