Skip to content

Community Impact

May 02, 2024

Event Recap: BSA x PIC Internship Fair

20240424 Internship Fair HERO PIC Web

Attending members of firms hiring through BSA x PIC for Summer 2024.

Photo by Max Schochet, PIC.

Last Wednesday, April 24, the first Architecture/Design High School Internship Fair was held at the BSA Space. This event was organized to bring participating students and hiring firms together in person while creating an inviting atmosphere for students to get acquainted with the internship process.

This summer’s internships, taking place July 8 to August 16, incorporate in-firm learning and professional development experiences 3-4 days/week, with supplementary activities for interns each Friday (a.k.a. ‘Summer Fridays’). The BSA coordinates and cohosts these Friday sessions to bring interns together and introduce them to local architecture/design projects in the Boston area directly with the professionals involved in the projects.

To prepare for the Internship Program, the Boston Private Industry Council (PIC) manages student outreach as well as the hiring process, from receiving applications to matching students for interviews and coordinating with hiring firms. To prepare for the Internship Fair, the PIC vetted student applications and coordinated interview schedules with both students and firms.

The Boston Society for Architecture (BSA)'s K-12 Design Education manages the partnership with the PIC and across all 7 hiring firms. They coordinate group conversations, high-level internship planning, preparing supplementary activities, and organizing/hosting events throughout the internship process. Thus far in 2024, this has included firm interviews to understand internship models, hosting the Architecture/Design Thinking Week workshop during February School Vacation, and planning the internship fair.

20240424 Internship Fair 1 PIC Web

Bill Spaulding, Senior Associate, Director of Education at Bergmeyer presenting an overview of the firm for the potential summer interns.

Photo by Max Schochet, PIC.

Internship Fair

The Fair began in the Channel Room, gathering students and firms together and kicking off the event with Taylor Johnson (BSA) welcoming everyone to the space. Each firm was then invited to share what is unique about their company and their approach to the high school internship. Common highlights from these introductions include company culture, firm focus/mission, notable local projects, and some initial notes on this summer’s internship.

20240424 Internship Fair 2 PIC Web

Mari Baker, a 2023 PIC Summer Intern, (left) and Emily Miyares, AIA, LEED Green Assoc., Associate at Payette (right) showcasing a few completed Payette projects to the group.

Photo by Max Schochet, PIC.

After learning a bit about each firm, students were invited to walk around the BSA gallery, asking questions to the firms that piqued their interest during the presentation.

Each student was scheduled to meet with hiring firms within four 20-minute interview blocks. In past years, these initial interviews took place over Zoom or at the hiring firm. This year, a participating firm came up with the idea for the marketplace and fair, which the BSA and PIC went on to develop. By allowing students to attend interviews at a single central location, they are able to focus on the interviews and gain a better understanding of the firms without the logistical stress of getting to each individually.

20240424 Internship Fair 4 BSA Web

Ongoing interviews in the BSA gallery at the Internship Fair.

Photo by Taylor Johnson, BSA.

Next Steps

After the first round of interviews at the fair, the PIC is coordinating with firms to discuss interviews, hiring, and next steps. The PIC is also coordinating additional interviews with students, meeting with firms, and proceeding with this summer's hiring process.

The Internship Fair was the first time this year that all hiring firms, organizational partners, and potential student participants were in attendance. The BSA aims to build on that momentum as summer planning gets underway to find more ways to engage both firms and interns at the space this summer.

Thank you to Bergmeyer's Bill Spaulding and Rachael Hoyland; Elkus Manfredi's Christina Hoover, Samantha Lord, and Hal Munger; Finegold Alexander's Leah Wolkovich-Quartey and Megan Y. Carriere; Goody Clancy's Muna El-Taha, Nina Huttemann, and Jackey Robinson; Leers Weinzapfel's Nate Dansie and Danica Kane; Page's Rebecca Young and Tully Mahoney; Payette's Emily Miyares, Calvin Boyd, Shreeya Shakya, Laura Devine, and Emily Chowdhury; Past intern Mari Baker; BSA's Taylor Johnson; and PIC's Bruce Stephen, Betsy Hamre, Max Schochet, and Kiley Danchise-Curtis.