Posted August 9, 2021
A summer internship is allowing Lorain County Community College student Jacob Luznar to put his classroom knowledge to work while also earning a wage.
Luznar is spending the summer as an IT intern on the security team at Avient, an Avon Lake company that specializes in creating sustainable material solutions and services.
Luznar, 18 from Elyria, is majoring in Network Communications Technologies at LCCC and said the internship has been a great experience, allowing him to apply what he’s learned in class while also pushing him to expand his knowledge.
“Avient is the perfect fit for me because they are a very reputable company who has a strong presence in technology, I’ve already learned a lot about corporate IT in my first month of working,” Luznar said.
Due to coronavirus restrictions, Luznar has divided his time between working remotely and in person at the Avient office. Doing so has given him a glimpse into the flexibility a networking career can provide, he said.
“This experience is giving me a broad picture of working in IT, and my next semester of classes LCCC will help me fill in the details,” he said.
Working with LCCC to provide internships for students like Luznar is beneficial for Avient, said Brian Schilf, vice president of Information Technology at Avient.
“Avient has gained tremendous value in partnering with LCCC,” Schilf said. “We are proud of what the students in our internship program have accomplished. We look forward to continuing this program and giving local students a chance to gain great experience.”
Even before Luznar graduated from Black River Career Prep High School in 2020, he knew he’d come to LCCC for his college education.
“My dad went to LCCC when I was younger and he always talked about how much he loved it,” Luznar said. “Growing up near the college helped solidify my desire to attend LCCC for my associate degree.”
LCCC was also his most affordable choice. On top of LCCC’s low tuition rate, Luznar earned the Choose Ohio First scholarship, a program that awards scholarships to students studying STEM fields. To help students reach their goals, LCCC’s Choose Ohio First scholarship program includes wrap around services, including personalized advising, connections with peers through STEM learning communities, and career experience through work-based learning and internships.
“The Choose Ohio First scholarship has encouraged me to stay focused on my goal of working in the technology field by staying connected with my advisor and allowing me to ask questions about the college and the technology field whenever I need,” Luznar said. “It was my Choose Ohio First advisor, Courtney Conrad, who encouraged me to apply for my summer internship.”
“Jacob’s experience as a Network Communications student coupled with his drive to succeed will serve him well as an intern with Avient,” Conrad said. “He is always looking for opportunities to learn and improve his technical and professional skills, and I know he has a bright future ahead of him.”
After he completes the internship at Avient, Luznar will continue taking classes at LCCC in fall semester, which begin August 23. An associate degree in networking and communication is his goal, and along the way he’s earning as many industry-recognized credentials as possible. In just his first year at LCCC, Luznar earned his Business IT Fundamentals certificate from LCCC, and completed the Client Pro certificate from TestOut. He is currently working on his CompTIA A+ certificate.
“LCCC and COF are both pushing me to ready my goals, encouraging me to take this time to learn as much as I can in the field while getting extra certificates on top of that,” Luznar said.
After he earns his associate degree next year, Luznar plans to work in the IT industry and is considering continuing his education with a bachelor’s degree in LCCC’s University Partnership.
Fall semester begins August 23.