Summer Interns at MATT Part 1

2021 Summer Interns @ MATT: Part One

Spotlighting MATT's 2021 Summer Interns

MATT Construction recently onboarded their summer interns to experience the world of construction in a variety of fields including project engineering, safety, human resources, marketing, and business development. Over the course of this two-part blog series, you’ll hear from each of our interns as they introduce themselves and highlight their experiences interning at MATT Construction this summer.

Meet Tessa Offut, Omar Viramontes, Anthony Polinski, Jocelyn Plascencia, Brendan Floyd, Leopoldo Beltran, and Cole Gerber below:

Intern: Tessa Offut


Q: Tell us about yourself 

A: “My name is Tessa Offut and I’m a sophomore at Purdue University studying Construction Engineering and Management. I initially entered Purdue University wanting to become an architect, but after my first year, I realized that working on commercial buildings, skyscrapers, and complex projects is a better fit for me. Growing up in Evansville, IN, I was a big art fanatic for drawing and painting. In my free time, I love being outdoors and have been really enjoying exploring Los Angeles for the first time. I’d love to come back to LA in the future and build a career as a Project Manager or become a superintendent at MATT Construction.” 

Q: What project are you working on this summer and what is your favorite part about interning at MATT Construction? 

A: “This summer, I’m working on the Audrey Irmas Pavilion at the Wilshire Boulevard Temple as a Project Engineer Intern. Seeing the Audrey Irmas Pavilion near the final stages of construction is absolutely breathtaking. There are so many intricate designs and different features that I’ve never seen on any other building; so my favorite part about interning at MATT is learning about and experiencing various tasks that lead to the completion of an amazing project.” 

Q: What inspires you to put on a MATT Construction hardhat every day?

A: “The work environment that MATT Construction creates is what has made everything fall into place for my internship. I have always been interested in commercial and complex structures, and the reputation that MATT Construction has in Los Angeles led me to apply for the program this summer. With this being my first internship, I was super nervous because I didn’t know anything about construction, but with the guidance of the MATT Construction team, I have been able to learn so much thanks to their willingness to teach.”

Intern: Omar Viramontes


Q: Tell us about yourself. 

A: “My name is Omar Viramontes and I’m heading into my last year at California Polytechnic State University Pomona studying Mechanical Engineering. On campus, I am a part of the Northrop Grumman Collaboration Project, also known as NGCP, where I am on a team for a year-long project to design and build an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to complete an assigned mission. In my free time, I love to play music and spend time with my Beagle-Dachshund dog by going to the beach and going on hikes.”  

Q: What has been your biggest takeaway interning at MATT Construction

A: “My biggest takeaway is learning about the importance and power of networking. I’ve met so many people who have shared their experiences in life and in the construction industry with me. Every year, I feel like I come out of my summer internship feeling wiser than the last and I can see the personal growth that I experience through the connections I’m making. Getting to know my team on a personal level and understanding their backgrounds has made the experience at MATT even better.”

Q: If money and time were no object, what would you be doing right now? 

A: “I have always wanted to travel to countries in Europe such as Italy, Germany, and Spain. There is so much history to explore in each country in Europe and I admire how each building has its own story to tell. Besides traveling, I want to develop more mechanical skills such as fixing cars and carpentry, to be more versatile and hands-on.” 

Intern: Anthony Polinski


Q: Tell us about yourself 

A: “My name is Anthony Polinski and I am a senior at Purdue University graduating in the Fall of 2021 with my major in Construction Engineering. Coming from Chicago, IL, I love being able to explore new restaurants and find places to hang out in Los Angeles whenever I have the chance. In my free time, I love watching baseball, soccer, and UFC, as well as working out.”

Q: What project are you working on and what is your favorite part about working with MATT Construction? 

A: “This year is my third summer interning with MATT Construction and I’m currently working as a Project Engineer Intern on the Arizona State University Herald Examiner Building in Los Angeles. During my first summer at MATT, I spent a lot of time out in the field learning the duties of a superintendent. This summer, I’ve focused more on Project Engineer duties, which include processing RFI’s and submittals as well as overseeing subcontractors. My favorite part about working with MATT Construction is how open and positive the environment is. I’ve learned so much during my internships at MATT. The amazing team always encourages me to continue asking questions, which builds my knowledge and makes the experience more memorable.”

Q: If money and time were no object, what would you be doing right now? 

A: “If money and time were no object, I’d be doing what I’m doing now: working hard to pursue my dreams. I’m a big fan of always giving it my all, and achieving my goals brings me enjoyment. I have always been motivated to put in the work from a young age ever since I saw my mother and father get to where they are now. They are superheroes in my eyes. I want to feel the satisfaction that my parents feel when their hard work pays off, regardless of if time and money are an object.” 

Intern: Jocelyn Plascencia


Q: Tell us about yourself

A: “My name is Jocelyn Plascencia and I am a third-year student at UCLA studying Psychology and Communication. As a first-generation student, I strive to give back to my parents, make them proud and pave a path for my four younger siblings. On campus, I am a member of the Chi Omega sorority where I oversee recruitment operations as a part of the New Member Committee. I’ve always enjoyed fitness and meal planning, and this past year baking was a fun hobby that got me through quarantine.”

Q: What is your favorite part about interning at MATT Construction?

A: “During my internship, I’ve learned so many skills by working on projects ranging from campus recruitment to payroll operations. MATT really focuses on employee growth through the utilization of SMART goals, which I have found to be really helpful. I plan to implement them into my everyday life to help me achieve my professional and personal goals. What I love about interning at MATT Construction is how everyone is open to answering questions. As an intern, I’m always looking for growth and it’s been amazing to work with people who are willing to share their knowledge.”

Q: If money and time were no object, what would you be doing right now?

A: “I would love to do everything I can to give back to my community. Theoretically, if money and time were no object, it would be amazing to spearhead a foundation to fund scholarships, house the homeless, and dedicate myself to make society better as a whole. Aside from giving back to my community, I’ve had a dream since I was a kid to own a home in every single state so that I could visit each state at any time.”

Intern: Brendan Floyd


Q: Tell us about yourself 

A: “My name is Brendan Floyd and I am studying Construction Engineering and Management at Purdue University where I’ll be a junior in the fall of 2021. At Purdue, I’m a member of the honor society for Construction Engineering and Management, Beta Tau, and I participate in several intramural sports such as beach volleyball, football, and softball.” 

Q: What is your favorite part about interning at MATT Construction? 

A: “My favorite part about interning at MATT Construction is the opportunity to always be learning. Reflecting on my first summer internship at MATT Construction in 2020, I am still applying lessons learned to this day. Being able to work individually and as a team towards creating something is fantastic and is why I look forward to working with my team every day. I truly enjoy taking in all the experiences, and I hope to continue progressing my knowledge at MATT post-graduation.”

Q: What is the number one item on your bucket list? 

A: “Getting my scuba diving license is definitely the number one item on my bucket list. Growing up, I’ve always had a fascination with the ocean. I find it really interesting how little of the ocean has actually been explored, and I would love to experience even just a sliver of that.”

Intern: Leopoldo Beltran


Q: Tell us about yourself 

A: “My name is Leopoldo Beltran and I am a sophomore at Northern Arizona University studying Construction Management. I come from a very small town in California called El Centro, which is where my passion for hiking and outdoor activities originated. In my free time, I love spending time with my family as well as my 8-month-old Doberman Lab.” 

Q: What is your favorite part about interning at MATT Construction?

A: “I love all the hands-on experience I gain whether it be processing RFI’s or working with window installation specialists to assess the quality of windows. All the work that I have been able to immerse myself into this summer motivates me to continue to work harder in my studies, especially since a lot of my work experience will tie into concepts I’ll be learning at school. After graduating from Northern Arizona University, I would love to become a Project Manager at a construction company like MATT Construction, and possibly start my own contracting ventures.”

Q: Who has been an influential figure during your time at MATT Construction?

A: “Throughout my time interning at MATT, my supervisor, Kelly Holahan, has been very helpful when it comes to my everyday tasks. She explains everything that needs to be done to the very last detail and provides thorough explanations on why processes are important. Another person who has acted as a mentor to me is Kendall Crossley. Every Friday, Kendall gives me a “Friday lesson” where topics vary from very simple lessons to more complex ones. Both Kelly and Kendall are leaders at MATT that I look up to.

Intern: Cole Gerber


Q: Tell us about yourself 

A: “My name is Cole Gerber and I am from Rancho Santa Margarita, CA. I’m going into my fourth year at California Polytechnic State University Pomona majoring in Civil Engineering. I initially started my freshman year as a Mechanical Engineer major, but I realized that switching to civil engineering to dive into the field of construction is a better fit for me. At Cal Poly Pomona, I am the President of the Sigma Chi Fraternity and in my free time, I love staying active by mountain biking, going to the gym, hiking, and playing a recent new sport, spikeball.”  

Q: What project are you working on this summer and what is your favorite part about interning at MATT Construction? 

A: “This summer, I am working on the One Westside project as a Project Engineer Intern. My favorite part about interning at MATT Construction is being able to work with an awesome team that is constantly teaching me about the construction industry. Connor Rogers is one person on my team who has taught me a lot in a short amount of time, ranging from better communication and presentation skills, to working with various software. The first few weeks were a rush of information, but the help of Connor and the rest of the team has made the process a lot less stressful.” 

Q: What have you learned throughout your internship and how do you plan to take what you have learned to your future aspirations? 

A: “I’ve learned to develop both hard skills as well as soft skills. My communication skills throughout this internship have greatly increased by collaborating with my team and communicating with subcontractors. Although I had considered my communication skills to be good, my experience at One Westside has allowed me to buff up those skills even more. As for hard skills, I have been able to learn how to utilize various software that stores sketches, mock-ups, and RFIs. I have become more comfortable with email etiquette and public speaking, which I’ll definitely apply to my work in the future.”

Thank you to all the interns who participated in these interviews and be sure to check out part two of this series in the coming weeks.

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