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a recap of TBG’s 2019 intern week

Amy Starling Rampy

Springtime at TBG means recruiting season! This year we attended 6 career fairs, made 3 on campus presentations and ultimately received applications from 31 schools! There is so much talent in the students interested in interning with us and after thorough deliberations we happily secured 7 summer interns for 3 of our office locations.

TBG Interns Class of 2019

ron cubbage – North Carolina A+T State University
erasmo cantu – University of Texas Austin
frances arnall – University of Georgia Athens

allie chomyn – Penn State University
haley powell – University of Oklahoma

rachel cross – Kansas State University
smita centala – University of Texas Austin

Once we had our interns onboarded, our next challenge was designing a program that would provide our outstanding student interns with a meaningful and enriching summer. Always striving to improve, this year we added an intense weeklong orientation and charrette. We called it Intern Week 2019.

After spending a day in their home offices, our interns traveled to Austin for a full day of Orientation and CAD training. They met firmwide leaders and discovered all the custom CAD tools TBG offers and closed out the day with a celebratory dinner, taking a moment to socialize before the real fun began.

For the next 3 days the group of interns worked as a design team alongside TBG designers. The teaching opportunities abounded as TBG’s experienced designers mentored our emerging leaders as they helped steer our talented interns towards design resolution for a real TBG project.

The interns were able to own their project and after a quick pre-charrette intro they headed out to the East Austin project site. The Discovery process ruled charrette day one. They worked on program development, functional use diagrams and at the end of the day presented their discovery package.

Day Two started with smiles as the group explored the site context even further and collaborated on design concepts. TBG founder, Earl Broussard, stopped by to offer design critique. Each intern had the opportunity to walk through their concept and Earl offered valuable commentary to set them on the path to work together to refine one final design concept.

Because our interns have very different educational backgrounds, they approached design from a variety of perspectives. The charrette allowed them to identify new strengths and push their understanding of what they were capable of. They overcame their comfort level of working at specific scales and received continual feedback all while strengthening their understanding of the design process, how TBG approaches design and bonded as a cohesive design team.

There is always good energy buzzing around the office on Fridays, but the last day of the intern charrette had everyone feeling the excitement. We could tell the group had really bonded and learned from each other. After lunch the entire Austin office listened to the interns present their conceptual design package. We toasted their success and sent them off to their home offices where they will be immersed in project work, tag along on project site tours, attend lunch and learns and weekly design reviews and bring a fun, fresh perspective to our office environments/cultures. While we really hope the interns are learning a lot this summer, I guarantee we are learning just as much from them. Intern week 2019 left us full of optimism about the endless possibilities for these students this summer.