From curiosity to a career plan: how an internship supported Aine NurAizza Nuruddin’s academic journey

Posted on November 01, 2022

Aine NurAizza Nuruddin, a fourth-year Electrical Engineering student, recently completed a 16-month internship at Hydro One. In her own words, she reflects here on her experiences before, during, and after her internship and how they influenced her chosen career path.

Before Internship

Queen's University gave me an opportunity to attend the How to Change the World Conference in February 2020, where I worked alongside individuals from diverse universities to research, develop, and present a 3-step model solution to the energy crisis in remote Ladakh, India. This experience piqued my interest in the Renewable Energy Sector. In second year, I registered for an internship and started attending workshops. By the end of the year, I was actively and confidently applying for internship positions. I started my internship at Hydro One a few months later in May 2021.



During Internship

The overall learning curve was steep, but the support from my colleagues was incredible! I was provided with numerous resources, training, and mentorship from both within and outside my team. Despite being the only intern in my sub-team, I was always given the support I needed and was welcomed to ask questions.

I worked as a Protection Engineering Intern in the Protection, Control & Metering team. In 10 months, I had a broad range of experiences in designing and understanding protection schemes. I worked closely with Senior Design Engineers to implement logic diagrams and setting files for varying Transmission Stations. Almost all of my learning was on the job.

I was offered to visit the Claireville Transmission Station, which is one of the largest stations of Hydro One. I went inside the Gas Insulated Switchgear building and witnessed the equipment in real-life. It was truly fascinating.

In October 2021, I attended the international CIGRE Conference hosted in Toronto. That was a memorable learning platform, where I networked with professionals in the power and energy sector. I am truly grateful to Hydro One for these wonderful experiences. 

I learned to take things one at a time and focus on the high-level learning first, then go into the details. I learned that the more one knows, the more you don't know! It is a lifelong learning journey. What I have experienced on internship is just the tip of the iceberg.



After Internship

After coming back from my internship, I ensured I had checked my degree planning spreadsheet to confirm I met all my requirements to graduate on time by April 2023. I also completed four business certificate courses during my 16-month internship to ease my workload for the final year. In addition, I read through some material from my third year to refresh on technical concepts.

I continue to serve on the Executive Committee for the CIGRE Next Generation Network. This platform has been great for networking and learning more about the technical innovations in the Power Industry. On campus, I am a Project Manager for a first-year Engineering Design Course, APSC 100, where I mentor four teams. The leadership skills I learned at Hydro One  allow me to guide first-years with what to expect in the workforce.

Protection and Control is a unique and highly technical role in the Power and Energy sector. Through my internship, I was exposed to a vast ocean of knowledge and I am looking forward to diving deeper into the multitude of diverse roles available after I graduate. While in my final year at Queen’s, I am pursuing elective courses to further my knowledge in electric power systems analysis, symmetrical components, fault studies, converters, inverters, etc. This is a career path I had never planned for. My internship has opened new doors for me, and I am excited to grow my career using the skills I learned at Hydro One.