This marks the third summer that Christopher Longman has interned with Weyerhaeuser, one of the world’s premier timber, land and forest products companies. Longman’s first two internships were based in Broken Bow, Oklahoma, but this summer finds him in DeQueen, Arkansas. According to Longman, each summer has brought professional growth and new responsibilities. We caught up with him to learn more.
What were your duties as an intern?
Duties vary depending on the situation of the intern, so my duties have changed from year to year. In 2016 I was coming in from my freshman year, so I spent a lot of my time shadowing foresters in different roles and learning the business. I gradually gained more responsibilities as the summer went on – mostly doing audits on contractors. My second year I did more of the same, but I also took on a more focused project doing survival walkthroughs on young stands and assessing fertilizer effects on midrotation stands. This year I am working with the harvesting side, and because of my experience I have a lot more autonomy working with thinning contractors as a sort of harvest manager in training.
Has this experience been beneficial to your undergraduate career?
It has been huge to learn things at my internship that help me in classes during the school year. I learned a lot about silviculture during my first summer that made our silviculture and intensive silviculture courses more meaningful. Aside from that, time working with industry gives me some perspective in any subject to think about how what I am learning applies in the real world.
What was your favorite part about the internship?
I have made great connections with foresters who I am thankful to call mentors and friends.
How did you learn about the internship?
Weyerhaeuser came to SFA to interview and Max Holmes, my advisor at the time, encouraged me to apply and helped me prepare. I have benefitted greatly from my time with Weyerhaeuser and would recommend this company to anybody; but, more than that, I would encourage freshmen to find a company or agency where they would fit in and try to get in the door early. Junior year isn’t necessarily too late to look for an internship, but I am incredibly thankful that I was pushed to get involved my freshman year. It made all the difference for me.