View from My Hard Hat: From intern to project engineer

by CODY LAUSMAN, construction management student and Lithko Contracting intern | March 29, 2017

In View from My Hard Hat, we sit down with industry professionals to learn more about his/her career, company, and industry. Here, we talk to Cody Lausman, who successfully turned his summer internship opportunity into a full-time job.

Construction management major Cody Lausman first heard of Lithko Contracting when representatives from the concrete contracting company visited the Indiana State University campus for a class lecture his freshman year.

“My professor mentioned that Lithko was a strong company and there were only a few open freshman slots for an internship,” Lausman says.

Lausman (standing, left) works as an intern on a Lithko project team.

After class, Lausman interviewed for one of the summer spots with a group of students, even talking with Lithko’s Columbus, OH Area Lead, Chris Doll, for an extra hour. His determination paid off: “I was shocked and excited when Chris verbally offered [me] an internship right there!”

For his first summer, Lausman headed to Columbus, where he worked on several phases at Goodale Landing, a brand-new nine-story parking garage and residential structural building project. At the job, he assisted with footings, foundations, slabs, walls, and the first elevated deck and even came in for several midnight pours.

Throughout the Goodale project, Lausman impressed Lithko operations manager Isaac Staats with his work ethic and the responsibilities he was able to take on — Staats invited him to return as an intern the following summer. “More than the exposure to varied items, it was the team and mentoring I received that made me want to come back,” Lausman says.

For his second summer, Lausman worked on another structural job but was entrusted with different tasks, including compiling daily reports, communicating with the general contractor, and surveying the site and laying out the column and walls alongside the field engineer. Additionally, he was given the opportunity to turn in time and quantity for payroll, while the Project Lead was on vacation.

With more experience came more responsibility — Lausman served as a field engineer his final summer as an intern.

When he returned for his final summer, he received more responsibility and spent the majority of his time as the field engineer on several small projects without assistance from others. Now, with three internships under his belt, Lausman plans to start full-time with the company after graduation this May.

“It was the trust of the leaders that solidified that [Lithko] was right company for [me],” he says.