College of DuPage Veterans Gain Internship Experience at Fermilab

GLEN ELLYN, Ill., Oct. 07, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — An innovative internship program is giving College of DuPage students who are veterans a chance to gain valuable work experience at Fermilab.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

Through the Fermilab VetTech Internship program, COD students provide technical support in various departments at Fermilab. The inaugural six-week program began in July with four students: (above from left) Bryanna Pisciotto (Aurora), Erik Dopp (Roselle), Colin Simpson (Wheaton) and Joseph Harris (Lombard).

Jose Alferez, Manager of Veterans Student Services at COD, said Fermilab contacted him asking for students from the Automotive Technology and Electro-Mechanical Technology programs.

“Fermilab was looking specifically for veterans because of their discipline, loyalty, hard work and a proven ability to do the job,” he said. “They also were looking for veterans from two programs that you don’t necessarily associate with Fermilab.”

Pisciotto found the experience “amazing.” Having grown up in a small town in Wisconsin, she tried college for one year and then signed up for the Navy, where she worked as an electronics technician.

“When I joined, the Navy tested me and determined my strong suit was electronics, which was a surprise,” she said. “I worked with radar equipment on ships, and my specialty was micro repairs on pieces like circuit boards. It was cool to find out how my repairs saved the Navy $500,000.”

While on deployment, Pisciotto was researching colleges with dental hygiene programs. Her husband grew up in Illinois and knew about College of DuPage. However, because of the separate application process for the Dental Hygiene program and a desire to start school right away, she decided to pursue electrical engineering at COD.

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