Robert Lydic, BS ’97, is president of Wavelynx Technologies in Broomfield, Colo., which specializes in mobile app authentication technology. He wanted to seize an opportunity to give back to his alma mater, while bringing in capable minds to work on real-world projects with his company.
T.J. Smull College of Engineering students Zach Krempasky, a computer engineering major, and Kento Akazawa, a computer science major, were selected as the company’s first college interns.
“I have owned and run businesses for over 20 years, and I have always ensured that I was able to contribute to ONU. However, being able to hire engineering interns for the summer was a new and amazing level of ONU association,” Lydic said.
Both students said their internships featured hands-on learning. Kempasky analyzed and altered lines of code and tested and troubleshooted various systems. Akazawa worked in app development for internal and external use.
“The app I was working on will be released this fall, and I think it’s awesome to get to experience that real-world work that is going to be used by actual customers,” Akazawa said.
Making a difference was also important to Krempasky.
“When looking for an internship, I wanted a company that I felt I could have an impact on. Working with a smaller company has allowed me to work on some projects that have helped the company move forward,” said Krempasky. “I also wanted to experience a different part of the country with my internship, and there was no place more appealing than Colorado.”
“Much to the surprise of our vice president of engineering and our other staff, the students were exceptionally well prepared, were able to contribute to meaningful projects, and helped move our company forward,” Lydic said. “They worked on projects that will change the world with the Apple and Google access control Wallet credentials and the hardware that enables its functionality.”
The interns said Wavelynx employers made them feel welcomed right from the start.
“The favorite part of my internship is the people I work with. Everyone that I have met at WaveLynx is very outgoing and helpful,” said Krempasky. “They did a great job making me feel like part of the team since day one.”
Both students appreciated the efforts made by ONU’s College of Engineering faculty and staff to help them get their internships, especially Heath LeBlanc, Ph.D.; College of Engineering Director of Corporate and Alumni Relations Laurie Laird, BSME ‘86; and College of Engineering Dean J.D. Yoder.
“The engineering department is the main reason I got this internship,” said Krempasky. “They sent an email promoting the opportunity, sent my résumé to Wavelynx, and even helped set up the interview.”
The successful partnership between Krempasky, Akazawa, and WaveLynx has set up promising prospects for ONU students in the future.
“Our vice president of engineering told me, ‘I don’t know what they are doing at the College of Engineering at ONU, but those students were far more prepared for actual development projects than I was when I completed engineering school,’” Lydic said. “We will absolutely provide more internships for ONU students. We had an amazing experience with the students.”