Wyatt Harvey, ’24
Mechanical Engineering and Astronomy and Astrophysics double major, English–Creative Writing minor
Intern with Ed Carpenter Racing
Where are you interning and what are your responsibilities?
My day-to-day responsibilities with Ed Carpenter Racing include performing quality checks on new parts that have been manufactured in house or outsourced, CAD design file management, performing systems checks on the race cars, and sorting through data and telemetry files from the race weekends. When we are working at the race track, I am in charge of helping with the data acquisition process and working with the engineers to help analyze the performance of our competitors.
How does this experience relate to your major?
This internship relates to both of my majors. I have been able to apply my Mechanical Engineering experiences in CAD modeling and general engineering practices, alongside my high-order thinking and problem-solving skills learned from my Astronomy and Astrophysics courses. Both majors have equipped me with the skills to solve problems in the race shop and at the race track.
What project are you most proud of?
During one of our tests at Iowa Speedway, our lead Data Acquisition Guy was not able to go to the test so I ended up taking over his position. I was in charge of managing all of the telemetry, data, and electrical systems of the race car during the test, which included performing a systems check, building the pit lane timing stand, working with the engineers to alter data tables relating to the gearbox and tire pressures that would communicate with the electrical control unit of the car, and maintaining the on-board sensors of the cars.
What has surprised you the most about this experience?
I was surprised by how much of what I have been learning in classes could be carried over. This internship has brought to life what I have learned in the classroom and synthesized it with one of my life-long passions.
What advice would you give another student who may be looking for an internship?
My best piece of advice to someone looking to get into this field of work would be to call race teams and email them your resumes. If they are not looking to hire, they almost always know someone who needs help and they can point you in the right direction. The racing industry employs a lot of people from a variety of different backgrounds; it is not exclusively engineering. I have met plenty of people who broke into the industry with financial, marketing, or art and design backgrounds, so if you’re passionate about the industry, keep knocking on doors because one will eventually open.