The Great Lakes Group


Meet Katri Heitman, Engineering Intern

Katri Heitman, Webb Institute Intern


• Age: 22
• Hometown: Plymouth, Michigan
• Residence: Currently, Cleveland, Ohio; when at school, Glen Cove, New York
• Hobbies: exploring Cleveland’s awesome food options and area parks
• Experience in the Maritime Industry: 4 years
• Passion for Maritime: “I grew up spending summers sailing on the Great Lakes and haven’t been able to get the fresh water out of my blood.”


Academic Institution: Webb Institute
Degree: Senior, graduating in June 2019 with a Bachelor of Science in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering


Company: Great Lakes Shipyard
Title: Engineering Intern
Tenure: January-February 2018, June 2018 – Present

Company: Netsco
Title: Intern
Tenure: January-February 2017

Company: Maran Gas Maritime
Title: Engine Cadet
Tenure: January-February 2016

Company: Vigor
Title: Intern
Tenure: January-February 2015



• Member, Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME)



Katri is becoming a very well-rounded engineer and has already established quite a depth of educational and professional experiences.  Some of these include:

  • New Construction
    • River Barges, Tugboats, etc
  • Ballast Water Treatment
    • Feasibility Study
    • Operational Applications
  • Repair Work
    • Winter Work
  • Mapping Vessels
  • Sea time


As part of this degree program at Webb, the whole student body takes an eight week internship every year to work in the industry.  So far, Katri has worked at a shipyard in the Pacific Northwest, giving her experience into new construction, specifically on river barges.  She also acquired sea time as an engine cadet aboard an LNG tanker. She worked side by side with operators and engineers, which offered her a first hand perspective into what works and doesn’t work.  Having these kinds of insights are helpful and can be applied to future projects throughout her career.



“After my first stint in Cleveland in 2017, I fell in love with the town and was itching to return. Luckily for me, not only had Webb previously established a relationship with Great Lakes Shipyard for an internship program, but I also met Jon Leivo (he’s a Webbie too!) at a SNAME meeting.

Every day in the shipyard, there was something new and exciting happening, and Jon and Graham were both very willing to give me projects and help me learn as much as possible. I can honestly say that, not only has my time at GLS been the most interesting and fulfilling experience I’ve had, it has also helped me realize that this is the portion of the industry that I want to be in after graduation. There are a million opportunities here to use the knowledge I have gained at Webb, and there hasn’t been a single day where I have left without learning something new. If you can’t tell, I absolutely love it here!”

Katri also commented on how much she enjoys the uniqueness of the fresh water vessels on the Great Lakes.  From new builds to repair projects and winter work, “it’s such a grab bag.  In the morning, I’m helping design the pilot house on a new construction build for a tug.  Next thing I know, I’m drawing and cutting out lug wrenches for another project.  It’s always something different!”

After this summer, Katri has one more year of school left at Webb.  Upon graduation, she plans to stay in the maritime industry on the Great Lakes.