CSCC Student Abhi Mistry Selected for Internship at Oak Ridge National Lab

CSCC Student Abhi Mistry Selected for Internship at Oak Ridge National Lab

Holly Vincent
Friday, September 21, 2018 12:00 AM

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – When Abhi Mistry first enrolled at Cleveland State, he had only been in the United States for three months and knew very little English at the time. Fast forward two years, and Mistry was the only community college student offered an internship this past summer at the Y-12 plant at Oak Ridge National Laboratories.

Mistry credits Dr. Patty Weaver, assistant vice president for workforce and economic development at CSCC, for telling him about the internship. Weaver had toured the plant and learned about the internship opportunities offered there. She told him that it was too late to apply for it that year, but that he should pursue it the following year. So, that’s exactly what he did, and he was accepted into the Chemical Sciences division.

“I really enjoyed the internship,” stated Mistry. “Going in, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but the internship gave me an inside look at what it is like working in the field of engineering and what kind of work you actually do in the field. Research at a national lab and having hands-on experience is crucial to this field, so I’m thankful that I was able to do that.”

“It is so exciting for me to see a young man who started at the college one summer barely being able to read English excel at the rate he has excelled, stated Weaver. “Being chosen as one of the only community college students in the state of Tennessee to receive this internship, it’s just awesome and really shows his dedication to his future.”

Mistry worked closely with Dr. Parans Paranthaman, Corporate Fellow and Group Leader of Materials Chemistry at the Chemical Sciences Division of the Y-12 plant, and his team of scientists. Although Mistry wants to go into Aerospace Engineering, he valued his time spent with Paranthaman and the experience gained working in the Chemical Sciences division.

“I highly recommend anyone interested in engineering to pursue an internship such as this one, no matter the field of engineering. The experience I gained has been very helpful.”

Mistry continued, “This was a paid internship, but there were other benefits, too. They offered two seminars a week with different speakers who came and talked about their jobs. So, you can make a lot of contacts, and there were more than 1,000 interns, so I was able to meet a lot of people.”

One thing he had in common with some of the other interns was his involvement in Phi Theta Kappa (PTK). During his time at the Y-12 plant, Mistry used a laptop with a PTK sticker on it which sparked a lot of conversations with other interns who shared that same interest.


PTK was one of the first clubs Mistry had joined at CSCC. Soon after enrolling, Mistry quickly immersed himself into the college life and was even chosen as PTK’s Regional Vice President for middle Tennessee.

“I originally joined PTK because of the scholarship opportunities, but as time went by, I realized that PTK is much more than scholarships. You get to meet new people and build yourself as a leader. You also have different projects where you had to use teamwork.”

In addition to PTK, he also became involved in the CSCC Honors program and received the Presidential Honors Scholarship. “I really enjoyed the Honors program,” stated Mistry. “I liked meeting like-minded students who were competitive like me and thought outside the box.”

Mistry continued, “It is really important to have one on one time with your teachers, and because Cleveland State is a small school, you are able to get the help you need,” stated Mistry. “I am so thankful for my time at CSCC. It made me who I am today.”

Photo cutline: Cleveland State Community College student Abhi Mistry was the only community college student in the state of Tennessee chosen for an internship with the Oak Ridge National Laboratories this past summer.


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