CI Design: Training the Next Generation
Summer interns gain knowledge, licensing hours in design and construction
BALTIMORE (June 20, 2019) – There’s education and there’s practical experience. Both are essential for designing the projects of tomorrow, believe the leaders of CI Design, the international architectural and design firm. That’s why they’ve instituted a summer internship program that gives young designers real responsibilities for their mixed-use projects around the country.
Graduate students Kelsey Winters and Suzanne DeMeritte are both participating in their second summer internship in the firm’s Baltimore office, working on mixed-use projects throughout the country while earning a salary and hours toward their architectural licenses.
“I’ve gotten a lot of experience in the phasing of projects,” Winters said, having worked on Metropica, the mixed-use project in Sunrise, Fla., for which CI is serving as master-planner and architect, during her first internship. This year, she’s assisting with the master planning of several mixed-use projects.
Now in her second and final year of the Master of Architecture program at the University of Maryland after also earning her Bachelor of Architecture degree at the university, Winters was seeking experience on the architecture side to complement prior experience in construction.
“I was eager to get started in the field, and applied,” Winters said.
As a rapidly growing firm with particular concentrations in mixed-use and science & technology projects, CI saw it would need extra help in 2018. The firm reached out to the University and made it known that they were looking to hire promising graduate students and were willing to give them real responsibilities on real projects.
“The students are very serious and extremely dedicated,” observed partner Chris Bauer, who coordinated the program with the University.
Also doing her second summer internship with CI, DeMeritte earned her undergraduate degree in architecture from the University of Maryland, and is now pursing her master’s at Ohio State.
Working with a mid-sized firm also gives interns more opportunities, both interns note. DeMeritte has worked on projects including North Hills in Raleigh, North Carolina, and as well as the Regency projects.
“CI offers a lot of flexibility,” DeMeritte said. “You get to fill in a lot of the gaps, whereas in my experience at larger firms an intern is more of a personal assistant.”
That’s part of the point, said John Larsen, president and a founding partner of the firm, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.
“As we’ve grown, we’ve undertaken a large variety of projects, and extra highly skilled talent is always needed,” Larsen said. “We’ve been thrilled to work with the University of Maryland to offer opportunities to their students. And we learn from these young talents as much as we teach.”
Winters has completed her construction hours, and now is working on her design requirements. DeMeritte also is spending time training in the firm’s finance department, with a goal of becoming a liaison between project architects and the accounting areas.
“This has taught me more about how at my interests are,” Winters said. “I’ve never worked in retail design or in designing homes.”
The firm also is hiring interns for its Boston office, Larsen added.
ABOUT CI DESIGN, INC.
CI Design is an international architectural design firm offering award-winning planning, architecture and interior design services to a diverse base of clients. For more than 25 years, CI Design has been a recognized leader in Mixed-Use and Science & Technology project design across the globe.
The CI Design team served as planner & architect for North Hills in Raleigh, NC, a 2-million square-foot mixed-use development. CI Design is currently working on several mixed-use developments including Metropica in Sunrise FL, a 4-million square-foot development and the 1.2 million square-foot expansion to North Hills In Raleigh, NC. CI Design is headquartered in Baltimore, MD, and has offices in Boston. For additional information, go to www.ci-designinc.com.
CI Design has offices in Boston and Baltimore, for additional information, go to www.ci-designinc.com .