Paul Crock, Internship Experience with Uber Advanced Technologies Group
Paul Crock, an undergraduate student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Composites Director on the Formula Buckeyes team, shares his summer internship experience at Uber.
This summer, I got the opportunity to work virtually as an intern for Uber Advanced Technologies Group (ATG), who are based out of Pittsburgh, PA. There, they are working on developing the future of self driving vehicles. Uber ATG is currently partnered with a variety of companies to obtain vehicles, sensors and technology to help ATG with their mission. There are currently tons of data collecting operations (in manual mode) across the country. With this information, they are able to understand the world the vehicle is driving in and create scenarios back on their test track that emulate real life driving situations, so they can confirm it works appropriately, before they start to roll these collections out to more and more places. Back in the office, they continue to work on enhancing the vehicle's perception, prediction, motion planning and simulation in order to make the ride as safe and smooth as possible.
My role over the summer was being a virtual test engineering intern. Falling under the Systems Engineering and Test category of the organization, our job is assessing the current status and capabilities of the vehicle and performing the testing to ensure that it is working properly and exactly as intended by the designers. This is to demonstrably prove that these vehicles will be safe on the road in the future, in ALL driving situations. In my role, I was able to work for a manager who was constantly interfacing with other teams, giving me that same opportunity. I learned so much from these interactions, branching outside of testing to the amazing people in simulation and hardware. I performed some data analytics on current systems, wrote requirements for various modules and defined use cases and concepts for future products. The company culture was great and everyone I worked with was welcoming, extremely willing to chat with interns about what they do, which made my time there amazing. My work will end up being super impactful to my manager and team, which speaks to how they treat all of their interns by giving them such unique project opportunities. While being virtual and staying home was not ideal, the team made the experience worthwhile, and I can take many of these learnings about decision making back to the composites team on Formula Buckeyes.