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Mentor Comments for Samantha Brummell

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Fellow: Samantha Brummell, Civil
Mentor: Clayton Poppe, VP of Engineering
Company: e2e Materials
Location: Ithaca, NY

" Samantha had several projects and roles this summer, some planned, and some not. The biggest project of Sam's this summer was coming up with a spray-coating plan for the company. This involved screening different coating types and picking specific coatings of interest, determining the appropriate equipment to apply the coatings, defining all of the supporting equipment and specifying the necessary facility requirements. Past work has focused on the costs and equipment necessary to produce e2e's biocomposite material, but there was a real gap in our overall Operations Plan where finishing was concerned. This project required both a technical understanding and a sense of what was going to drive our business. The finishing costs can be as much as the costs of the raw material, making them a significant contributor to the bottom line. Selecting the right coatings and equipment for the size and volume of expected production was not trivial and required an understanding of how our end products would be impacted.

Sam was also very helpful in translating customer requirements for one of our products into a list of tests that she conducted. Where there was not an existing test that adequately tested the requirement, she created a new test procedure. Many of the test reports were subsequently shown to the customers, and Sam's ability to write a report that was both technically accurate and accessible to a non-engineer was very valuable.

Finally, Sam volunteered to step into production to assist in the company's push to meet a big delivery of product. This was extremely helpful, especially because Sam was extremely good at the tasks she worked on. Her attention to detail and craftsmanship were amazing and everyone was impressed by her work. This was not a planned activity, nor am I especially happy to have had to divert all of my resources to it, but this was a seminal event for the company and I think Sam's participation in the production push gave her a good view into the startup world in a very tangible way.

I can't say enough good things about Sam. She contributed in many different areas, from helping out in production to engineering, testing and business analysis. Not only did she do excellent work on everything that was assigned to her, but she also volunteered to do more than her fair share. Her upbeat attitude and willingness to learn and help others made it a pleasure to work with her. Sam is one of the brightest and most capable people I have ever worked with and I know she will be successful in her future ventures.

Sam routinely came in early and stayed late to complete tasks.  Regularly completing assignments faster than expected, she was quick to pick up a broom and clean or organize our shop space in contribution to our 5s goals while awaiting the next project.  Sam's dedication to achieving excellence in her work enabled us to give her more responsibility. I knew that she could achieve her goals with minimal direction and everyone trusted her to make important decisions. We already miss her."