Submitted by students, these are previous internship experiences told first-hand.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Wheatonarts and Cultural Center

My name is Melanie Hapner and I am a senior Fiber major.  During this past summer I was an intern at Wheatonarts and Cultural Center.  I always have had an interest in glass art, and when I had the opportunity to take the glass blowing course MICA has to offer at the Corradetti Studio, I wanted to further my knowledge about glass.  Wheatonarts is not too far from my home in New Jersey so as a child I was able to visit the community.  After the class with Corradetti I decided to email Wheatonarts about information for interning.  After speaking with Hank Adams, I was very excited to become an intern.

This has been one of the best experiences of my life.  I not only learned about glass art, but about life.  Living on a commune was a great experience and I met many people who I will continue to keep in contact.  I was also able to meet many glass artist and make connections for the future.  Everyday worked hard whether it was maintaining the facilities, repairing furniture, or helping run the bubble blowing event.  Glass blowing is a difficult skill and although I would not say I have portfolio worthy pieces, I have definitely furthered my skills and knowledge in the art.  I hope to return to Wheatonarts to work my way up to an assistant after I graduate, but if I do not, then I want to continue working with glass in the future.

I’m happy I chose Wheatonarts for my internship because it made me realize the direction I want to take my work and career.


My name is Sharon Duke and I am a Graphic Design Senior. I found out about the internship at Vince because I know both Art Director and Senior Graphic Designer there. I had previously interned for them at Oscar de la Renta. One of them contacted me in the spring saying they were looking for an intern. I had a Skype interview with them and was offered the internship about a week later.

Vince is a luxury clothing company that was founded in 2002. The company’s focus is everyday iconic and luxury essentials for men, women, and kids. Their clothing is sold at Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, Barneys, and Saks Fifth Avenue.

I worked for their Art Director, Natalie Clark, and their Senior Graphic Designer, Michaela McKenny, who run the creative department. They oversee anything to do with branding and graphic design. They are in charge of organizing and concepting photo shoots for each season, designing the website, creating emails, any application of the company’s logo, and many other things. They are about to release a new logo for Vince that they designed, and this summer they had to create all the new collateral for the new logo.

I was their only intern, so I had a lot of responsibilities. I was involved with a wide range of projects throughout the summer. I was basically assisting with whatever they were working on, but I was also given some projects to complete on my own with guidance. Here are some of the projects I worked on: creating their 2014 company holiday card, creating store event invitations, creating email blasts, creating window graphics for new stores during their construction period, saving web assets for their website, assisting with photo shoots, and assisting with completing magazine ads. I worked on these and a variety of other projects during the summer.

Natalie said that I’m the best intern they’ve ever had which I feel very proud of because she has worked at four major fashion brands over ten years. She said that I was more than an intern because people emailed me directly and could get what they needed without even asking my bosses about it. People in other departments were recognizing how hard I worked there.

I got to sit in on a lot of meetings where I learned what it means to be an art director or a senior graphic designer. There were things I learned which I would never have learned in a classroom setting. Something I learned from observing my bosses was that you need to be really adamant about what you need and that it’s okay to be demanding. I sat in on a meeting that the art director had with a vendor who was producing their new packaging. I was amazed at the level of detail she looked at the bags and boxes with to make sure they were absolutely perfect. Across the board, what made their and my projects successful seemed to be in the detail. I learned to really focus in on what I was creating to make it the absolute best it could be. This internship was really valuable because I learned so many things that will help me get a job after I graduate.

This internship helped solidify my career goals because it helped me to realize how much I want to go into fashion. I find working as a graphic designer in the fashion industry to be really exciting because you’re constantly working with both typography and photographs. You get to work on a variety of creative projects in many different mediums. It’s also inspiring to be surrounded by different kinds of creatives and to work with people who have incredible job experience.

Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts/Dandelion Spring Farm

My name is Elizabeth Langyher and I am a Junior Ceramics major. As a sophomore, I began exploring agriculture and its relationship with ceramic art forms in my studio classes. I became very interested in planters and the process of seeding and transplanting sprouts due to my experience with growing and maintaining a large garden at home for the past several years. At the same time I was investigating this, the head of my department, David East, was putting together a ceramic studio/organic farm internship that would explore food, clay, studio work, and an opportunity to learn about organic farming.
The two organizations, Watershed and Dandelion Farms, are direct neighbors and this proximity was the inspiration for the internship. Watershed is an organization that aims to give artists an opportunity to work in a communal studio and have the freedom and means to make their work. Dandelion Farms is owned by Beth Schiller and is a MOFGA certified organic farm that promotes community and a healthy farm to table lifestyle.
            After hearing about the opportunity, I thought it would be perfect for me and would provide experience and insight into agriculture that would feed into my studio practice. I applied with a resume, cover letter, essay, and portfolio and was given a tentative acceptance several weeks later. I was later given a final interview by Watershed’s studio manager, Reeder Fahnestock , who was also my direct supervisor, and officially accepted as one of two interns for a three week session. I was able to fund the trip through the Meyerhoff Internship Fellowship.

            As an intern, I worked as a studio assistant for Watershed, performing the same duties as the summer studio staff. These duties ranged from grounds keeping to making clay to reorganizing and relabeling dry materials to checking in with resident artists and making sure that the studio is working for them. On the Farm, I was also inducted into the staff and into the regular schedule of the day, working with the apprentices daily on every part of the farming process. I regularly harvested crops as well as seeded and transplanted them. I also participated in creating structures to protect the plants from harsh weather and bug infestations. Of the whole experience I have to say that I am proud of being able to keep up with the staff in both organizations, but specifically at the farm. It was relentless, hard work and I walked away feeling very satisfied with myself for rising up to that challenge.

            Above all, I left the internship with a wealth of knowledge. From interacting with the residents, about 15 artists from all over the country, I gained insight into life as an artist after school that I felt was very important to learn directly. Learning about their career paths was very helpful, as was hearing about the career history of the farm apprentices and the opportunities there. While I still maintain very loose career goals, I feel that this experience has simply expanded my horizons. For example, I never would have seen myself wanting to farm and now I want to explore this line of work after school. As a student, I intend to further explore the connection between food and ceramics, using the new vocabulary that I’m gained from this experience, and I am very grateful to have participated in this internship for this clarified focus.