Architecture Intern Development Program

Posted by Guest Contributor on Jun 10, 2014

Benjamin Franklin once wrote, “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn” — the essence of Array’s Intern Development Program (IDP). In my 20+ years as an Architect and IDP administrator with Array, I’ve seen an incredible transformation with how we’ve implemented the IDP program over the years, embracing the ambition and enthusiasm of recent grads. We also recognize and support the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB) requirements faced by these same eager minds and thus provide a comprehensive program consisting of both an exposure to a wide variety of projects, as well as seasoned mentors willing to share real-world experiences and knowledge.

Array Architects Intern Development Program

Graduates of an architecture school are required to embark on an arduous, yet enlightening, journey of teachings designed to expose them to all facets of the architecture industry. This 5,600-hour rite of passage consists of four experience categories; pre-design, design, project management and practice management.  Seventeen additional experience areas, ranging from site, building analysis and schematic design to bidding, contract negotiation and leadership/service are taught. Array’s IDP supervisors work in concert with the participant’s direct supervisors to ensure that required hours are correctly recorded and that more attention and lessons are provided to individual participants in areas where they may need more experience. The Intern Development Program can be confusing and intimidating, yet the purpose of the program helps interns gain well-rounded exposure to all aspects of architecture. With the right IDP supervisor and mentor, the program can be an insightful and invaluable experience.

Ryan Keszczyk, an Array Architects IDP participant and Architectural Intern, shared his thoughts on the breadth of Array’s intern program. “One of the great things about working at Array has been the accessibility to take part in all areas of the practice of Architecture. My experience has ranged from programmatic and space planning to detailing and construction documents. While I have had some part in many projects, my greatest exposure has been to infusion/cancer centers, rehabilitation facilities, Health and Wellness Centers, as well as involvement with project pursuits. I’ve also been given the opportunity to begin traveling and attending client meetings, which has been an incredible part of the process that I had not had much exposure to before.”

Having a robust IDP program is important to Array. “Our young staff are the future of the firm,” according to George Shmidheiser, Principal and COO, “ and investing our time as mentors, and encouraging their success on their registration exams is a small part of keeping staff engaged and demonstrating the importance of our career paths.” 

Blog authored by Joe Garrity, Joe was a principal with Array for over 25 years.

Topics: Continuous Improvement, Design Careers, Internship

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