In this Q&A, we feature Chris De Martinis - one of Foreship’s 2023 summer interns, and the first ever to join our US-based team. After completing his internship in July, Chris will continue providing part-time support as he completes his studies.
How and why did you choose Foreship for your internship?
I was not aware of Foreship until one of my classmates, Sonia Gutt, - who now works full-time in Fort Lauderdale - got hired. She couldn't stop talking about how happy she was to get started and how fantastic everyone had been during the whole process.
One time I jokingly said, “Maybe I should try and see about a summer internship there,” and Sonia was all for it, immediately sending me Ben’s contact information [Benjamin Sward, President, Foreship LLC].
While Ben initially said there wasn’t a spot, I was contacted two months later, got an interview, and eventually agreed to the internship offer.
I was drawn to Foreship because of its work with the cruise ship sector. I had previously worked in the defense and offshore oil industries and wanted to explore a different career path before graduating. Ultimately, the decision came down to the people I would be working with. I truly liked everyone I spoke with and Ben's flexibility during my interviews. Therefore, it seemed that Foreship would be a great fit.
What were your main tasks (or projects) throughout your internship?
My title was Project Engineer Intern, but I felt the “intern” part could have been dropped at any moment because I was treated like a team member, working on real projects for customers where my work would be put into practice.
Some of my main tasks focused on project descriptions for upcoming drydocks, including structural fire protection plan for modified areas for several different projects, structural calculations and drawings, lightweight survey, drawing checking for other team members, and other tasks that would be too long to list.
How did this internship align with your career goals and aspirations?
This internship aligned with my career goals because I'd rather work on conversions, as I find those more interesting and challenging. These projects are sometimes shorter, so I would have something new to work on every few weeks. Eventually, I believe I want to move into project management, which is an option at Foreship. I also want to travel more after graduation, and Foreship also provides those opportunities.
Are there any specific areas or skills you would like to further develop after this internship?
I believe that improving my AutoCAD skills by learning new techniques and commands will be very important for shortening time on projects. Also, keeping up with basic principles of naval architecture, such as structural or stability calculations, will be beneficial.
What did you enjoy most about your time at the company?
I enjoyed the people I worked with the most. Everyone was always so friendly, and we had an office comradery unlike everywhere else I had worked. Throughout my projects, I always felt supported: I could ask anyone in any office for help, and they would answer quickly or direct me to someone else who could.
Would you consider working for Foreship in the future, either as a full-time employee or for another internship opportunity?
I would absolutely continue to work for Foreship in the future. Ben has graciously agreed to keep me on part-time for the remainder of the school year while I finish my master's degree, and who knows what the future holds, but a return to Foreship full-time is possible.