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A Glimpse into the Future of Work: Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power - Central Research Institute Internship

image credit: Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power - Central Research Institute, Daejeon, South Korea (image from khnp.co.kr)

by Mark Gino Aliperio (an article from KINGS Life Vol. 19, 2018)

One day, I came across the call for applications for the Korea Hydro & Nuclear Co.- Central Research Institute (KHNP-CRI) winter internship program. I was initially hesitant to apply because I thought I only stood a slim chance of getting accepted due to the limited number of slots (only 2 slots for the whole school), but after some thought, I tried my luck by submitting a last-minute application. A week later, a buzz on my phone delivered the good news that I had been accepted! 

CRI is the research-oriented affiliate of KHNP, which is Korea’s largest power generation body and producer of the nation’s domestic energy. With the vision of being the world’s best research institute leading nuclear power technology development, CRI has become a top-tier research institute studying the entire nuclear power plant (NPP) cycle, from design and construction to operation and decommissioning. 

When I reflect back, my first day at CRI was one of the most memorable days of my time at work. This job was the first time that I had ever worked in an office environment, so I didn’t know what to expect. The environment was quite relaxed, but I learned how to behave in the workplace. After being introduced to and warmly welcomed by everyone, in order that I become familiar with the new working environment, I was taken on a tour around the different facilities and laboratories, such as the Radiation & Environment Laboratory, the Main Control Room (“MCR”) Simulator, the Centralized Monitoring & Diagnosis Center (“CMD”), and the Plant Construction & Engineering Laboratory, to name a few. 

Just observing the everyday events that happened at these places taught me about teamwork and how people can come together to get things done. I was assigned to the R&D Policy and Planning Team under the R&D Strategy and Planning Office. The first, and probably the biggest, task given to me was to study and give a talk on molten salt reactor technology to the different teams in the office. Considering my short stay at the institute, I wasted no time in learning as much as I could. Aside from honing my research skills, I also received a great deal of mentoring to improve my interpersonal and managerial skills. In addition, I visited the Construction Technology Group and listened to lectures and presentations made by the general manager about the Integrated Construction Management and 3D Virtual Construction Monitoring Systems, which his team developed.

To conclude the internship program, we took an educational excursion to Korea Radioactive Waste Agency (KORAD) Low & Intermediate Radioactive Waste Disposal Facility in Gyeongju, Shin-Kori 5 & 6 Construction Sites, and Shin-Kori 4 Auxiliary and Turbine Building. 

I would like to take this opportunity to express my deepest gratitude to KEPCO International Nuclear Graduate School (KINGS), KHNP-CRI, and my supervisor, Mr. Dae-Seung Park, for this internship experience that was so incredible, both professionally and personally. I hope that more students can take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn and grow and to eventually become a successful NPP professional.

 

Mark Gino Aliperio's picture

Thank Mark Gino for the Post!

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Discussions

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Jun 19, 2020 4:20 pm GMT

Thanks for sharing, Mark Gino-- good to hear you got so much from the experience! Do you see a similar full-time role in your future? Is there anything you wished you could have done but didn't get a chance to?

Mark Gino Aliperio's picture
Mark Gino Aliperio on Jun 20, 2020 12:48 am GMT

Hi Matt, thanks for always reading and commenting on my contents. I appreciate it a lot. By the way, I’m still hoping to work in the industry full time in the future. As a newcomer with very minimal experience, it is still a struggle to get into the industry. I have applied to a number of companies for years already, but still no luck. But nonetheless, i dont need to feel discouraged, yet i’ll this a challenge to improve myself. Thanks again!

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jun 20, 2020 8:11 am GMT

Mark, thanks for sharing your experiences with EnergyCentral readers. There is an unlimited future in nuclear technology which awaits you - work opportunities will only increase in coming years.

Hopefully, other students interested in clean energy will read of your experiences and have the chance to work with nuclear technology up close too. Visiting the facilities where high-energy physics is used to generate billions of watts of electricity, and meeting the dedicated engineers who make it happen, is truly an awe-inspiring experience!

Mark Gino Aliperio's picture
Mark Gino Aliperio on Jun 23, 2020 1:08 pm GMT

Hi, Bob. Thanks for taking time to read this. Yes, I’m still hoping for that day to come, that I’ll be able to work in the nuclear or energy field in general. What i’m doing now is expanding my skills set and building my portfolio, and writing articles and sharing my work are part of it. In this way, I hope i cam meet potential employers. Thank you again for reading. I really appreciate it. Stay safe.

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