Beyond the Usual: 8 Fun Summer Internships for Architecture Students

ishika kapoor

6.5 mins read

June 07


OH! It's summer again. With the end of the semester at hand, summers are a prime time for students to look to gain some experience in the professional world. But hey, who says you have to be limited to the typical boring architecture office job?

Gaining different kinds of exposure is essential for well-rounded growth, and attaining a good understanding where your interests lie. No kind of learning ever goes to waste, and you never know what kind of knowledge might come of use to you at some point in the future!

So if you want to make your summer more experimental and fun, and simultaneously gain professional experience, here are some out-of-the-box internship options that you as an architecture student can explore.

[Looking for a more traditional internship? Read: Internship 101: 5 Best Architecture Firms in Asia to Check Out]

1. Architectural Journalism and Content Writing

Illustration showing online content writing being read by people on mobile and laptops


Bringing design to the world is as much about writing as it is about drawing and graphics. These internships are great opportunities for architects who love to write, and idly daydream of becoming architecture journalists one day! While working as a content writer, you get to hone your writing skills, expand your research skills, and flex your creativity while writing about all things design.

Even if you don’t aim to have a career in content writing, this is knowledge that becomes very useful later on, as many offices look for architects with good written communication skills. Many online platforms like Novatr, Rethinking the Future, ArchDaily, etc. offer internships in content writing!

2. Graphic Design

Pop colour graphic portrait with bird and plant illustration


Graphic design is a part of the essential knowledge-base of an architect, and involves skills that are often already imbibed in an architecture student. Such internships are great for building your expertise with graphics and communication design, illustration software like Adobe, and witnessing the professional processes of Graphic Design! As you can imagine, such experience is invaluable both as an architecture student (think presentation, portfolios) and a working professional.

And who knows, it might even end up being the job that you go back to!

[Read: Which are the Best Paid Design Professions in India (2021)? ]

3. Hands-On Site Work

A construction site showing formation of arches with brick masonry

(Source: Pangea Project)

Many famous architects recount stories of the summers they truly understood what architecture is, where they showed up at construction sites and learnt directly from masons, contractors, site engineers, and construction workers themselves.

While this is unusual for architecture students, who usually prefer to get office experience, this other half of architecture is equally (if not more) important. The kind of learning you experience while working to construct a brick wall, setting-out a plan, constructing arches, is incomparable. It will vastly increase your understanding of building construction, and make you a better architect.

Hands-on site experience is also immensely valuable in architecture offices, and will serve to impress for years as a fresher architect!

[Read: Is Material Specialization the Next Big Thing in Design?]

4. Architecture Photography

Flora Fountain in Mumbai, a must visit Victorian style structure

(Source: Trip Savvy)

The niche field of Architectural Photography is one that garners much interest among architects and photographers alike. Learn about the endless techniques and possibilities of capturing architecture, maybe even develop your own style this summer!

You may find internships under professional architecture photographers, design magazines, or you may even be a part of heritage photo walks. Such walks host tourists, students and history enthusiasts, spreading awareness about city heritage. Click away!

5. Research and Think Tanks

Illustration of work behind concluding a research, use of charts and graphs to drive conclusions

(Source: eLearning Industry)

Are you the kind to dig deep? Consider interning at a think tank! Research organizations like mHS City Lab and rat[LAB] work towards conducting research in issues of architecture, planning and design, working to scientifically back further innovation in the field. A lot of their work is socially-oriented, and delves into very real societal issues which can be impacted by design solutions.

Also look out for offices that conduct research and then implement them into their design work!

[Read: 10 Respected Parametric Design Firms in India to Look Out For]

6. Volunteering

People planting plant as a volunteer to support green cause

(Source: Giveaway)

Volunteering with NGOs that deal with shelter, habitat and green building solutions not only fulfils social responsibility, but also increases your knowledge in these areas by ten-fold. Such places, such as SEEDS and Development Alternatives, are always looking for volunteers and interns, so go ahead and apply!

You don’t even need to be restricted to habitat NGOs, any and all volunteer work- whether it be at an old-age home, an animal shelter, or an environmental society- has important lessons to teach. There is little that you can do with your time that is more worthy.

7. 3D Modeling and Model Making

Section of a model with people and landscaping

(Source: Sculpteo)

With many firms outsourcing their modelling work, 3D Modelling is a fun and lucrative summer job to have. You may choose to freelance, especially for small residential projects, or you might want to work as an intern at a 3D modelling company! It would serve to drastically improve your modelling and rendering skills, while (most likely) putting some good money in your pocket.

[Read: A Guide to Rhino 3D Plugins]

8. Heritage and Conservation

Drawing of a Himalayan Temple


History buffs out there, this one's for you. Heritage and conservation organizations like INTACH always have spots for students of architecture for drawing and documentation work. With the rich architectural heritage of the Indian subcontinent, the work is never-ending, and is one of high cultural significance. As a nation, it should be our priority to conserve, revitalize, or adaptively reuse our historic structures, so you would not just be engaging with the past- you would be a part of the future.

Don’t hold back from doing the things that excite you, even though they may not follow the “optimum” path. Explore as much as you can, for this is where you truly begin to understand yourself.

If you liked this blog, keep an eye out on The ‘Hub for more!

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