Creative Internships - Ara X SALT


Laura Taylor

Proximity and reciprocity are a pretty great foundation for collaboration. SALT District's ‘hood includes Ara Institute with thousands of tertiary students. This creates a fantastic opportunity to connect Art & Design students needing experiential learning with opportunities that local organisations might be able to offer. Dr Bruce Russell, manager of Art & Design, says "In the Bachelor of Design there are five specialisations: photography, visual communication, fashion, motion design and applied visual art. By graduation every student is required to engage in around 150 hours of client-based work, which we term ‘professional practice’. This work is not assessed by us, it is intended to meet third party expectations and is judged purely on meeting those."

A viable internship will be no more than 20 hours a week and all parties use an MOU that is intended to set mutual expectations and protect students from unreasonable demands; keeping the focus on learning. It will also have a clear end point and a recognition of what has been achieved. As Bruce says, "This type of opportunity helps the students build diverse and exciting portfolios for use on graduation (in addition to the assessed work they have also done in class)."

We are so excited to facilitate a programme that builds a fantastic relationship between Ara Art & Design and local businesses and groups. And once we have this figured out, there’s no reason it couldn’t involve internships for any other area of study!

If you're keen to learn more at a meetup for possible hosts in Feb 2021, reach out to us:

Laura Taylor is Principal Placemaking Advisor at Ōtākaro Ltd, a Crown-owned development company based in Ōtautahi Christchurch.