As a kid, Project Intern Davis Manning really liked Legos. There was something about building things that struck a chord with him. It’s probably why he took up carpentry as a teen before learning construction methods in his twenties.
It wasn’t just any one aspect of building that appealed to him. At the University of Alabama, he studied mechanical engineering and civil engineering. A couple of internships later, Davis had dipped his toes into project management. Suddenly, he was seeing the bigger picture. The spark that began in his youth was fanned into flame.
As an intern at Gleeds, Davis is delving even further into project management, applying himself on real-world projects that include working remotely out of a high-profile car brand’s factory. Meanwhile, he’s learning about the many related disciplines that intersect with the project management discipline.
1. Why did you choose Gleeds to pursue an internship?
My university professor recommended an internship at Gleeds because they knew my strong suits and preferences and thought I would be a good fit. After doing my own research into Gleeds’ project management works, it seemed to provide exactly the career I wanted to pursue; they had a great reputation and performed work all over the world.
I had already interned with several companies before Gleeds, including a large general contractor and a smaller construction management firm. Both gave me great insight into project management but Gleeds offered a much more holistic range of experience by also teaching me about other disciplines like program management, cost management, and risk management.
2. What have you enjoyed the most about working in construction so far?
I enjoy the fast paced, critical thinking of the construction management process. The work environment has pushed me to think on my feet and adapt constantly. I suspected Gleeds might motivate me to push my limits in this role. Sure enough, it has!
3. What do you hope to learn from your internship?
I hope to further develop my communication, presentation, schedule management, and leadership skills – all of which are essential to perform project management. I also plan to become a Certified Associate in Project Management before I graduate this year. Given that the exam for this requires in-depth, practical knowledge of project management methods, the internship will really help me prepare for that.
4. What other opportunities are you exploring now?
One thing Gleeds has afforded me is a wide variety of educational and career advice from my colleagues. Many have already been through the process of pursuing higher education and certification, which has opened my eyes to the many education paths out there. Some colleagues have an MBA, others a Masters in Construction or a Project Management Professional designation, and others still have a PhD.
Given that I plan to pursue some of these, it’s been massively helpful to have this guidance from industry professionals to inform my decisions.
5. What current trends are you excited the most about?
Working at a luxury automotive manufacturing plant has heightened my enthusiasm for the energy sector. They’re soon launching a new electric SUV line, which will surely turn some heads in the auto and energy industry. As an avid car fan myself, I am incredibly excited to see how our society adapts to this advancement in energy efficiency we’re seeing in EVs.
I’m also excited to see widespread implementation of tools like BIM and Revit. It’s making a massive difference for how we display information in a more and more efficient way, and I expect the industry will only continue to iterate and innovate on this technology.
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I enjoy the fast paced, critical thinking of the construction management process. The work environment has pushed me to think on my feet and adapt constantly.