Back and better than ever, this year the externship program has expanded to include several landscape architecture firms. I am very excited for everyone who was placed in an externship. 75 students competed for only 30 positions!
Like last year the crunch to complete and submit all materials was intense. Portfolios, resumes, and statements of interest needed updating. Firms needed to be researched. Making the firm list was probably the hardest part. Remember research shouldn’t be left to the end, make time to figure out what each place stands for, what work they do, how it fits you, and who you know that might be able to tell you more.
All in all once it’s in nothing more can be done but wait. And wait anxiously. It was made clear early on that externship positions would be given first to students that hadn’t participated before.
I know when I first did mine last year I was so grateful for the experience. Having had only my school experiences to reflect on and market during internship searches I found it difficult to compete with people who had worked in offices and knew exactly what they were in for. Thankfully these positions were given first priority to students without a previous externship (and hopefully without previous internships).
To those accepted: dress nice, be in time, and don’t be afraid to ask questions! Ask, ask ask away! It’s the one time you will have the least amount of responsibility, liability, and pressure to know everything and can really catalog what you need to work on. Don’t just coast.
So while I wait on a waiting list I will plan out an alternate break. Maybe while at home I can shadow some local firms. Or perhaps I can set up my own externship and get to know more about landscape architecture. Should those plans fall through I will at least have been prepared to apply early for internships this summer!