Summer 2019 Internship Program: Lessons Learned

LS3P kicked off Summer 2019 by welcoming an amazing group of interns from across the country. We are grateful for the talent, energy, and dedication they brought to us as they deepened their professional development. From writing to marketing to architectural design, our interns worked on various facets of LS3P’s business and practice. Our 24 interns represented 19 cities, 8 states, 10 colleges and universities, and 2 high schools; each of them brought valuable perspectives and significant talent during their months with the firm.

To provide our interns a more comprehensive understanding of “how the magic happens” in professional practice, we created a structured Summer Internship Presentation (SIP) series that touched on a variety of topics ranging from sustainability to technology to human resources to design process.

A few of our interns shared their thoughts and lessons learned from the summer through our SIP program:

Week 1 (Firm History):

“The first presentation gave me insight into the firm’s history, mission, and possibilities for future expansion. I enjoyed learning about how different offices across the Southeast first emerged. I found particularly intriguing the process of merging with other architecture firms to help LS3P grow, which requires the strategic use of criteria so that the merger is mutually beneficial and maintains LS3P’s commitment to the Southeast. Finally, I learned the reasoning behind LS3P’s decision to centralize its focus on architecture and to hire consultants for engineering needs as well as how the firm sustains well-established relationships with other consultants and clients in the area.”
—Forough Mofidi | RDU

Week 2 (Design Process):

“During the presentation, presenter Danny Adams said, ‘Design inspiration is a powerful thing and should be memorialized and celebrated, but every great idea evolves.’ This quote was really revelatory for me because it helped me realize that it is okay for a design to turn out differently than the initial idea because that means that you allowed concepts to adapt according to the strengths of the program.”
Joel LaBombard | ILM

Week 3 (Sustainability | Innovation)

“Contrary to popular misconceptions, strategy, foresight, and tools like built-in energy modeling can make building energy-efficient buildings achievable and pragmatic. We have a 27% LEED accredited staff and have 85 LEED projects. We also use smart software like “dRofus” to support our workflow and integrate the data of sustainable design with the design of a building. LS3P proudly participates in the AIA’s 2030 Commitment, targeting a goal of 70% energy use reduction for all new construction. With each new building, we advance our knowledge and also use our growing expertise to influence our community of architects.”
–Nate Sepic | SAV

Week 4 (Specs | CA | Risk Management)

“This presentation introduced me to the complexities of liability insurance. Further, to maintain quality and manage risk, it is important for architects to maintain clear, consistent communication with Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing (MEP) consultants about issues relating directly to them since they are the experts in those individual fields.”
Keely Haggar | CLT

Week 5 (Ambassadorship | Marketing | Communication)

“As a Marketing Intern, I enjoyed how the presenters emphasized that marketing is a significant tool for a company’s networking, community engagement, and branding. Brand, vision, values, and connections are all vital to the firm as they help lead to building critical relationships with potential clients, which in turn can lead to projects. Whether you are directly involved in marketing, communications, or business development efforts or not, it is beneficial to understand how these practices can be utilized to better the company and your career.”
Ashlyn Henderson | CHS

Week 6 (HR | Insight | IT)

“The Human Resources department is great resource that can help to address and improve employee lifestyle, professional development, and much more.  The department is here to support us and has multiple roles within the company.  This team strives to provide the tools for success on an individual basis and for the company at large, such as Internal Training and the Project Management Training Series.  I personally have felt very supported working at LS3P with lots of help at my disposal if needed.”
Abigail Uhrich | RDU

Week 7 (Diversity & Inclusion)

“One necessary component of LS3P’s vision is to create an inclusive, diverse environment where all people can belong and take part in the whole. Diversity includes, but is not limited to age, gender identity, communication styles religion, and race. Inclusion facilitates a mixture of cultures, backgrounds, and expressions that ultimately mean acceptance of all people. By collaborating with others, we can share more experiences, work together, and creatively solve complex problems that we could not have solved otherwise.  By deepening the firm’s commitment to diversity, we can bring together a variety of perspectives that bring design excellence and innovation to our projects as well as diversify our workload and workplace. The incorporation of diversity and creation of inclusive environments is often a slow process and requires generational change; however, that doesn’t make it any less urgent to create.”
Carley Downs | CAE

As our student interns return to school, we hope the knowledge and experience they have built this summer will propel them forward in their academic and professional careers. We are eager to watch each of these talented individuals as their careers progress and their impact grows- and we look forward to the opportunity to work with them again.

About Blakely

Blakely Goldsmith joined LS3P in 2018 as a Human Resources Generalist. Blakely earned a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, and a Master of Arts in Communication with an emphasis in Digital Marketing from Johns Hopkins University’s Washington, DC campus. Her professional experience includes talent acquisition, human resources, and events planning for diverse university and corporate clients in the Boston, MA and Baltimore, MD areas. She serves as a firmwide resource for LS3P’s eight offices and is based in Charlotte.