December 19, 2017
When David Manley began his Southern Company co-op journey, it didn’t take long to see how his colleagues embodied honesty, integrity and trust. That created a genuine sense of community for him, making Southern Company feel like home and a place he dreamed of working for full-time.
David, an electrical engineering student at the University of Florida, works in substation design for Southern Company Services in Forest Park, Georgia. He never imagined a co-op could spark such meaningful professional and personal growth. Now on his third and final rotation, David reflects on the difference his peers made throughout his co-op experience.
David’s mentor became not only a main point of contact, but someone who felt like family. “The mentor program that Southern Company has is one of the strongest
things I’ve experienced,” he says.
Before working at Southern Company, David didn’t see himself as a leader. But that has changed. “My co-op has helped me be more of a leader when it comes to the team and it’s showed me the value of teamwork in general. At Southern Company, you can’t get anything done unless you’re a team player,” he says.
Most importantly, David saw how the team-oriented environment reached far beyond the workplace. Southern Company’s dedication to fostering a sense of community and stewardship personally affected David, who is an active member of Students of Southern Company—Georgia chapter. David says he appreciated volunteer opportunities presented to employees such as feeding the homeless and sending care packages to Puerto Rico for hurricane victims.
David will begin his full-time career in February 2018, working in substation physical design with Southern Company in Birmingham, Alabama. Aside from continuing his own growth, David hopes to participate in the co-op program again – this time as a mentor.