Alumni Highlight: Prototype Engineer Brock Benson ’16

Headshot of Brock Benson

Brock Benson ’16 graduated from Hope College with a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering with a concentration in mechanical engineering. He started at Gentex Corporation in Zeeland, MI during the summer of 2016 as a Production Support Engineer working on the Full Display Mirror production line. He then became a Production Process Technician in the Microelectronics Assembly area in late 2016 where he remained until he became a Prototype Engineer in the fall of 2018.

As a prototype engineer, Brock works in the final assembly and electronic assembly production areas. He interacts with production engineers on continuous improvement and mechanical engineers on design projects. He designs fixtures, maintains equipment, and manages resources so that customer orders are filled in a controlled manner. He has contributed to Gentex’s Smart Lighting and Full-Display Mirror applications. The following are excerpts from a recent correspondence with Brock.

What do you find most exciting or interesting about the work that you do? 

The most interesting aspect of my position is the range of projects I’m involved in. I get to work on new products for Gentex. I get to spend time designing, but I also get to be hands-on actually implementing my changes, as well as, interact with people from a variety of different backgrounds.

What are some activities you were involved with at Hope that helped shape you as a person?

My favorite memories from Hope all involved playing basketball in front of our screaming fans in a sold out Devos Fieldhouse. Being a part of a team is something that I really enjoy in the workplace as well, and I try to find other teams to be a part of in my everyday life – from actual sports teams to different project groups at work.

What aspect of your engineering education at Hope was most beneficial?

The career fairs were really helpful because they allowed me to talk with a lot of the local companies, work on my interviewing skills, and help me get over my nerves of doing interviews for the first time. I also enjoyed the collaborative environment we had with our classes, as it allowed me to create good relationships with my classmates.

Can you comment on the liberal arts aspect of Hope?

I feel the liberal arts aspect of Hope helped me become a more well-rounded person. I enjoy the sciences, but I also have benefited from the arts. I have been able to use those soft skills developed at Hope in the workplace.

What advice would you give to current students?

Make the most of your relationships while you are in school. I formed some of my best friendships through my engineering classes. In addition, those friends are great resources. I’ve received career advice from them and can bounce ideas off of them to help troubleshoot work problems.

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