Student: Tanya Favorite
Faculty Sponsor: Peggi Clouston
Project Type: Independent Study
Year: 2005

Boise Cascade, LLC is a distributor and manufacturer of wood products, paper, and packaging. Boise is made up of four divisions, one of which is the Building Solutions and Distribution Division. There are 29 distribution locations, which has over $2 Billion in sales in 2003. Boise is the second largest supplier of Engineered Wood Products in the United States.

My internship with Boise took place at their Westfield, MA branch. The internship was 40 hours a week during the summer and 21 hours a week during the Fall semester. The Westfield branch services the New England, New York, and New York City areas. The branch has about 75 employees, 9 of which are in the Engineered Wood Department.

In order to be placed in this internship, a prior knowledge of many of the topics covered in the Building Materials and Wood Technology major were needed. Ttopics were covered in BMATWT classes such as:

  • Light Frame Construction
  • Blue Print Reading and Estimating
  • AutoCAD
  • Mechanics of Wood and Wood Composites

Job Description:
As a Drafter in the Engineered Wood Department :

  • Take blueprints from a customer and re-draw them using BC Framer®, a Boise program.
  • Use Boise engineered wood products for floor joists and beams where specified in the blueprint.
  • Trace the loads on a house from the roof on down to the foundation.
  • Make sure that beams and floor systems will perform properly.
  • Check loads on floor joists and beams using BC Calc®, a Boise program.
  • Produce a final plan along with a cut list to send out to the customer

BC Calc® and BC Framer®:
These two programs, used by drafters in the Engineered Wood Department, are made by Boise Cascade, LLC. They are used together to create a finished product for our customers.

The BC Framer® program is similar to AutoCAD in a few ways, but not similar enough that you could interchange the files. We use this program to do all of our plan drawings.

The BC Calc® program is used for checking loads on beams and floor joists to measure their performance. We have to put into the program the tributary area, point, linear, and concentrated loads. We also input the live and dead loads to place on the beam or floor. This will give us the amount of deflection, moment, and shear for the member being sized.


  • There are jobs available to Building Material and Wood Technology majors that are technically oriented.
  • There is a place that you use what you are taught in classes, it is not just all theory.
  • Having an internship is a great way for you to tell quickly if you want to work for a particular company or have a specific job.
  • Working in an office can be a fun environment if you are working with the right people.

Dr. Peggi Clouston, P.Eng. – University of Massachusetts
Stan Gershfeld – Technical Manager Engineered Wood – Boise, Westfield Branch

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