IIP Internships in Architecture and Civil Engineering
Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture
Location: Anhui Province, China |Gansu Province, China|Shaanxi Province, China |Xi'an,China
About: Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture (BUCEA) is the only university for architecture in Beijing. BUCEA is hosting a new base for Wu Zhi Qiao Charitable Foundation (Bridge to China). The base is named the Research and Development Base of Earth Architecture and aims to develop a platform for research, demonstration, training and education in earth architecture.
Intern responsibilities: IIP interns will contribute to areas of investigation, design study, experiments, field construction and technical on-site supervision, so as to explore and demonstrate a suitable way towards ecological architecture suitable for China's poor rural regions and learn how to design and construct with nature. IIP interns will work on one or both of the following projects:
- Visitor Center of Qinling National Botanical Garden, Xi’an, Shaanxi Province, China
This project is located at the foot of Qinling Mountain which is a famous scenic spot of China and an hour’s drive from Xi’an city. The client, Qinling National Botanical Garden, plans to develop a visitor center, so as to reach the demands for visitors’ reception, tourism guide, accommodation, relaxation, etc. The visitor center aims to provide visitors with a natural and rural ambience in the form of a tourism town or village, by fully utilizing the original traditional houses, topography and environment. Therefore, a series of design for new buildings, transformation of original houses and landscape is included. The project has been authorized to our team and was launched in September 2016. The design process is going to last for at least 15 months as planned. The assessment of the original buildings and resources have just been completed. The conceptual design is ongoing. In summer 2017, IIP interns will participate a series of detailed design in building, landscape, interior and even construction design.
- The Research and Development Base of Earth Architecture, Beijing, China
Supported by Ministry of Housing and Urban-rural Development of China, a research and development center is going to be design and built to meet demands of our team for research, demonstration, training and education in earth architecture. The proposed site is located in a village with a 1.5 hour’s drive from Beijing City. Our team works as both the client and designer. The master planning was just launched and is proposed to be completed in May 2017. Therefore, the IIP interns will participate in the whole process of design for building components.
Qualifications: Candidates with interests in architecture and civil engineering are encouraged to apply. Since the earth-based technology is easy to handle, IIP interns can participate not only in the design scheme, construction experiments, and on-site design during construction, but also parts of construction work.
Previous work experiences (in the words of past IIP interns): Intern #1: I helped with the construction of a village center in a village called Macha in the Gansu Province. There were there master's students from Xian who are in charge and I assisted them. Intern #2: We worked on repair and aesthetic improvements to the facade of many of the buildings at the Macha Village Complex in the Gansu Province. We also went to Guanxi and helped refurbish an old building to be used as a common space. Responsibilities were similar: providing labor and design recommendations. This experience has taught me many things about sustainable design and how to use earth's natural resources to create modern buildings. I learned simple ways of doing things with out the use of modern appliances. I also learned a great deal about Chinese architecture from the past and present. Intern #3: My work responsibilities coincided closely with the Macha village project. I worked on site to help contribute to the construction of the project. I helped to repair rammed earth walls and worked to improve the overall appearance of the building complex as it gets close to completion. Aside from the Macha project I also worked on a renovation project near Guilin in the Guangxi Province. It aimed to take a traditional dwelling and turn it into a exhibition hall that would then serve as a village center. On site we were able to help with small construction tasks and contribute ideas. Due to the nature of the old site and difficulties in finding materials locally there was much collaboration and brainstorming that needed to be done. We learned about the vitality and resilience of rammed earth technology, an ancient yet seemingly forgotten architectural practice that is key to attaining environmental sustainability in rural villages that are becoming increasingly reliant on fossil-fuel-burning modern technologies. Princeton's curriculum is often very theoretical in nature, forcing students to consider the "why?" in many situations. Our ability to provide input allowed us to help steer the project managers toward adhering its original mission and intent: providing an example of a modern building (in aesthetics and amenities) that exemplifies the usage of rammed earth technology.
View PowerPoint presentations from past IIP interns:
Xi'an University of Architecture and Technology intern #1
Xi'an University of Architecture and Technology intern #2
Xi'an University of Architecture and Technology intern #3
Xi'an University of Architecture and Technology intern #4
Location: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
About: IBI Group is a globally integrated architecture, planning, engineering, and technology firm. From high-rises to industrial buildings, schools to state-of-the-art hospitals, transit stations to highways, airports to toll systems, bike lanes to parks, IBI Group designs every aspect of a truly integrated city for people to live, work, and play. Their company organizes their expertise into three sectors: Intelligence, Buildings, and Infrastructure.
- Intelligence: systems design and software development.
- Buildings: building architecture, interior design, building engineering (mechanical, structural, electrical).
- Infrastructure: planning, urban design, landscape architecture, transportation, and civil engineering.
IBI Group's collaborative and combined approach focuses not only on creating the best solutions today, but also creating the right solutions for tomorrow. Their company believes cities must be designed with intelligent systems, sustainable buildings, efficient infrastructure, and a human touch.
Intern Responsibilities: IIP interns will contribute to the design, planning, and layout of plans of projects.
Qualifications: IIP candidates with interests in Architecture/Urban Design are encouraged to apply. Skills in CAD, InDesign, Photoshop, and Sketch-up would be an asset.
Previous work experience (in the words of a past IIP intern): I developed massing plans for urban development projects in Dubai and Saudi Arabia, city layouts and AutoCAD drawings, authored environmental impact reports for the city of Dubai and created templates for client presentations to be used in future projects. Our first project was the Jeddah 4 planning of the business part on the northeast corner of the site…The second assignment was the drafting of the state of the environment report. That was one of the most important highlights of my experience at the office since it allowed me to learn more about the city and the built environment…I went from being unable to describe certain aspects of architectural work to fully understanding what it takes to design buildings and urban plans and picking up on all of the details that I would otherwise omit in historical and modern construction. Last but not least, I became efficient at reading through large texts, research papers and technical language, critically evaluate it and extract pertinent information… A concurrent project that came up around this time was the drafting of the Yanbu Detailed Masterplan Report…Next we had the creation of a 3D model for Qassim Oasis City. Even though my skills extend to other software such as Rhino and 3DS Max, I decided to use the tools that I knew how to use the least, namely Google Sketch Up. In creating Qassim, I enjoyed implementing my newly acquired knowledge on planning and massing in the commercial area and creating layouts that made sense and followed certain rules but also had a creative aspect to it, which was a mixture of cues from my exposure in the university and in Dubai. The cross-collaboration between different software such as AutoCAD for the layouts and Sketch Up for the extrusions and design was most challenging, as one mistake in the former would follow through and appear in the latter in the form of multiple mistakes. Therefore, I had to think carefully about my pipeline make sure it would work on the other tools that I would use in order to shorten the time needed to complete the project… The last project that I was assigned was the Jeddah 4 Detailed Masterplan Report. I had to adjust the transportation team’s materials to the way the rest of the report was laid out and organize the data that I collected efficiently so that I could quickly go through it and choose whatever was needed. Additionally, now that I had to compile text for the different sections as well, I used the skills that I acquired from the drafting of the SOER to write a formal, unbiased…and clear text to describe the different elements of Jeddah 4. Finally, the photographs of the loading unloading paths in the Walk incentivized me to explore the Walk further and think about those details in cities and the built environment that I would otherwise dismiss or not even think about.
View a PowerPoint (.pdf) by a past IIP intern:
IBI Group Intern #1
For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and to APPLY click here: IBI Group
Location: Phnom Penh, Cambodia
About: NRG Solutions is a renewable energy start-up looking for ways to empower people in Cambodia with clean energy solutions. NRG has two main areas of focus: They are starting to build a national distribution network for clean energy products and developing efficient appliances to reduce energy poverty in rural Cambodia and improve people’s lives by providing appropriate solutions. They also have an engineering team that tailors larger rooftop solutions to both urban and rural customers throughout the country. NRG has installed thirteen rooftop systems ranging from 300W-4KW, mostly in schools, clinics, hospitals, private homes, and other small businesses.
Intern responsibilities: IIP Interns will be contribute to the work of the IT team or the policy team.
IT Department IIP intern responsibilities:
- Building upon the work of previous IT interns and staff, this internship involves working with our existing management information system to add more functionality and allow us to use our date to improve quality of service. The intern's work will allow managers to assess trends and improve strategy.
- Part of this project will help develop a mobile user interface that will allow sales and technical teams to interact with the system while in the field. This will improve the amount and quality of data we can collect and help the teams with their day to day work. This position will work directly with both management and field staff to assess needs. Then, it will work independently to develop, test, and provide training to relevant stakeholders.
Policy Department IIP intern responsibilities:
- The intern would be a liaison between NRG Solutions and the Solar Energy Association of Cambodia. The intern would write papers that contribute to negotiating with the government to implement and improve policy that improves access to energy for millions of Cambodian families that do not have electricity. The position involves research, organizing meetings with members of the Association and other stakeholders, and writing and presenting proposals for better policy.
Qualifications: For the IT position, students with interests in electrical, mechanical, or environmental engineering, as well as renewable energy, business, marketing/communications, fundraising, accounting, and/or web development are encouraged to apply. The ideal candidate would be a strong communicator and have some coding experience. For the policy position, students interested in public policy, government, and politics are encouraged to apply. For both positions, the candidate should have an interest in renewable energy, social impact, and low-income markets.
Previous work experiences (in the words of past IIP interns): Intern #1: I researched existing published policy on access to energy in Cambodia; Met with different levels of government to get updated information on policy and updates on implementation of policy and projects. Met with local and multinational organizations to understand challenges in current policy, and changes. Analyzed government structures and policy to advise on best ways for the private sector can have a larger say in the development of new policies and to create public-private partnerships to help with the implementation of this policy...I learned a great deal in a very short time given the unique nature of the startup. From my project, I learned how to conduct research in a foreign country (which is not as easy as going to Firestone), how to connect with government officials and how to understand the challenges and changes in renewable energy policy in a developing country. I think most of my learning has come in the form of interacting with colleagues/my supervisor in the office, with regard to how a startup or any business operates and how to delegate responsibilities and accomplish goals. Intern #2: I developed an app for the sales team here. It is for use during initial client visits, so that the team can record data efficiently, and give an immediate price estimate to the client. This will save the team the two weeks it takes them now to generate a quote from a handwritten report, both saving the team time and presenting a more professional service for the client. I advised NRG on choosing a client relations and sales management software to streamline their business processes. This involved comparing existing software in terms of price and functionality to help decide what best fits NRG's current and future needs. More importantly, I worked with NRG's head of business development to chart in detail the workflow and organizational structure of the business...I learned technical skills through building the app for NRG (this isn't really something Princeton teaches). I also learned a lot about the culture of a startup, and the dedication that it takes to make something truly great with limited financial resources...Culturally, I learned to be more patient: patient with my surroundings, because things don't always run entirely smoothly here, and patient with myself, because for as much as I'm learning, there's always more to learn. Intern #3: I was assigned a few projects: One potential project that I worked on aimed to replace the diesel generators in ten battery charging stations in rural communities. It was an application based process in which the project would be partially subsidized. However, the deadline was too soon and we weren't hearing back from our suppliers that we could not follow through with the project. In the end, I summarized our findings and design decisions in a report should the company pursue a similar type of project in the future. Then, I was assigned a new project - an off-grid solar system for a mobile container office. I presented the design in an initial proposal for this project. I also prepared energy consumption profiles. My next project was focusing on helping prevent overuse in the solar home kits. I tested batteries to find a correlation between voltage readings and state of charge/hours of use, and figured out which parameters of the charge controller to program in order to prevent overconsumption. Doing so would extend the life of these solar kits by several years and prevent customers from demanding replacement kits back when we had no way to prove that they were overusing it and killing the batteries. As a result, the new solar kits that they sell will provide a much more sustainable solution…Through these projects I learned a ton about how to properly size solar systems and significantly improved my skills in Excel. Intern #4: I was a business development intern. I worked to improve NRG's business operations/implement PAYG technology. I learned a lot about emerging solar technologies/business models and wrote a report on it.
|For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and TO APPLY, click here: NRG Solutions|
Saraiva + Associados (S+A)
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
About: Saraiva + Associados (S+A) is an architecture firm established in 1996 in Lisbon, Portugal. S+A develops its activity in the areas of Architecture, Urban Planning, Design, Interior Design and Sustainability. S+A supports clients at every stage of the design cycle, from initial strategy and design planning through implementation and management. S+A has a multicultural team of over 100 professionals.
Intern Responsibilities: IIP interns will conduct research, contribute to proposals, and make detailed drawings for building designs for upcoming projects.
Qualifications: IIP candidates with interests in architecture and/or civil engineering should apply. Technical skills in BIM - REVIT, Sketch-up, Artlantis, Photoshop, and technical drawing would be an asset. Basic Portuguese is strongly recommended.
Previous work responsibilities in the words of past IIP interns: Intern #1: There were two main projects that I worked on, which were two office building facade proposals for a company in Kazakhstan. I was actually put in charge of the initial research for existing, successful projects we could draw inspiration from. I then presented these to my supervisors and then with their added input we began making preliminary versions of the facades in AutoCAD. Additionally, I was given a lot of responsibilities in detail drawings as well as designing an outside seating area for one of the offices…Many of my design ideas were presented in some form to the clients. Intern # 2: I worked on the 20th anniversary book compiling drawings of floor plans of their most successful buildings. I edited them in AutoCAD to make them look nice and technical. Many of my drawings were used to show to clients. My drawings for the book will also be used. I contributed new ideas that influenced final decisions. Also, I came up with a floor plan and elevation for an apartment building and my design was used and edited by another architect.
For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and TO APPLY, click here:
Saraiva + Associados
Stiftung Solarenergie Philippines
Location: Manila, Philippines
About: Stiftung Solarenergie (StS) Philippines is a social enterprise organization that strives to combat rural poverty by providing all off-grid villages with access to innovative technology solutions powered by solar energy. This placement provides IIP interns with the opportunity to understand how social enterprises work. One in four Filipinos lack access to electricity. The vast majority of these 25 million individuals live in isolated coastal and mountainous regions across the country. The mission of Stiftung Solarenergie (StS) Philippines is to combat rural poverty by providing all off-grid villages with access to innovative technology solutions powered by solar energy. StS Philippines is engaged in illuminating off-grid households via solar home lighting systems, installing community-level solar applications such as computer labs and water pumps, empowering beneficiaries through education and capacity building, and mobilizing citizen-sector support for efforts to eradicate energy poverty. As a social enterprise, our approach is inherently hybrid in nature. The company catalyzes change by leveraging both market-based as well as philanthropic resources, working in tandem with social businesses and community-based organizations to ensure sustainable impact at the grassroots level.
StS Philippines is at a crucial stage of its evolution. We continue to pilot with new products and systems while replicating and scaling up successful innovations. Interns will join a dynamic working environment in which they will assume significant responsibilities and gain the opportunity to support ongoing community development work at the grassroots level.
Intern Responsibilities: Summer internships directly support our mission of empowering rural communities through the deployment of solar solutions. Typical projects include:
- Marketing and communications: Improving website, editing video testimonials, preparing program brochures and fundraising materials/grant applications, preparing training materials
- Impact assessment: executing solar user forums and surveys, preparing impact assessment reports
- Product assessment and deployment: assessing and summarizing technical performance of new solar products, developing new solutions and product packages, deploying products in field and conducting user feedback sessions
- Financial analysis: Updating business plans
- Partner and donor database management: Building and updating community partner and donor databases
- Market research/mapping: Updating electrification data and maps (households, schools, clinics, etc without electricity), preparing additional GIS mapping data sets (e.g., health, poverty, water availability, etc), building GPS system for tracking solar deployments
- Supporting programs and campaigns: Over the summer, the interns will support and participate in active programs (e.g., Light for Education, Light for Health, Light for Life, etc) and campaigns (e.g., Sail for Light, Dive for Light, etc).
- Preparation of training materials and operations manuals: The interns will help develop and write training materials and operations manuals that will be utilized for training our partners and scaling up.
Qualifications: IIP candidates interested in economic and community development, environment, technology and social enterprises are encouraged to apply. Online media, graphic design, and video editing skills would be an asset but are not required.
Previous work experiences (in the words of previous IIP interns): Intern #1: Dealt with mapping out unelectrification for regions of Philippines to prioritize company strategy for regions to target; Piloted and configured new solar unit product to aid in diversification of solar product portfolio; eventually demoed solar products. Intern #2: I worked on the Light for Health program, which aims at providing solar energy to birthing centers in rural areas. I created an excel sheet where I input all the information from clinics who want to participate in the program, as well as NGOs and local government units that have recommended them. I worked on creating the program manual, where consecutive stages of the process are described in detail. I was asked to help with technical calculations for a solar electric system which the Department of Education has requested from the organization for computer labs they want to introduce at 6000 schools in the country. I ended up consulting the calculations, adjusting them, and sitting through the meeting with the Department's representatives, which was an amazing experience. I learned quite a bit about how a social venture functions in a developing country, and how much work is required on the community level to make the foundation's work sustainable. Intern #3: I created infographic materials for solar hub; created operations manual for solar hub and evaluated solar hub sites. I also created all of the forms and guidelines for this new section to run and function. Through this experience, I learned startup logistics, form creation and business modeling.
|For UPDATED information on SUMMER 2017 and TO APPLY, click here: Stiftung Solarenergie, Philippines|