As a motivated freshman, Kathleen Guerra applied to MISTI to work in the Chemical Engineering Department of the Polytechnic University of Catalunya to explore a possible career opportunity. She had previously found a passion in environmental issues – especially climate change – so she was excited to be placed in the Center of Process and Environmental Engineering (CEPIMA) group. “This was a great opportunity for me to get a taste of the field and see if it was the right path for me,” she says. As part of CEPIMA, Kathleen was given the task to study supply chain management and learn about the inefficiencies that arise in the process. After hours of reading and familiarizing herself with MATLAB, she began to code to model the Bullwhip Effect that occurs in the supply chain due mainly to miscommunication. Further in the summer Kathleen also began to consider the environmental factors that also contributed to the Bullwhip Effect.
Not only was Kathleen exposed to research in the department she was considering majoring, but it was also her first time in Europe. She explains that the global exposure she gained was just as important to her growth as the internship was. “I had the opportunity to travel around Barcelona and visit the cultural landmarks of the city and surrounding areas in Spain,” she explains.
THE MISTI PROGRAM ENABLED ME TO HAVE A MEMORABLE SUMMER EXPLORING AN ACADEMIC INTEREST IN CHEMICAL ENGINEERING WHILE ALLOWING ME TO GAIN VALUABLE GLOBAL EXPOSURE.
Overall, Kathleen was extremely grateful for the opportunity provided through MISTI to explore her interests and contribute to projects across the globe.