The Interior Design/Interior Merchandising internship is included in the degree plan to give students the opportunity to apply design theory to practical work experience. It provides an opportunity to confer with and to observe successful design firms. A large part of students' learning about the profession of Interior Design/Interior Merchandising can be gained through constant observation and awareness of the built environment and from working with persons in the profession. A positive attitude coupled with the knowledge one receives during the internship experience can start the student toward a rewarding career in interior design.
For the intern experience, students are encouraged to seek the areas of application that they would hope to pursue as a future career. It is the hope and intention of the SFA Interior Design program that students participate in a wide variety of activities of the particular firm and that they, in turn, will be of some service and assistance to the professional host employer.
Interior Design faculty provides a internship meeting each spring to provide detail information about the requirements. Packets are handed out at the meeting to assist students in securing an internship.
The student receives three (3) semester hours of university academic credit for participation in the internship program (250 hours). A grade is earned on the basis of the student's involvement in the work of the firm, on-line presentation, and assignments. All correspondence between student and coordinator is treated in a strictly confidential manner.
The host design firm expects professionalism when dealing with clientele and/or business associates. Confidentiality to the host firm must be honored; it is considered inappropriate to discuss business dealings or design projects outside the host firm unless authorized to do so. The intern is in the professional world of design and must conduct themselves as an ethical business person.
Students should always remember that they are not only representing Stephen F. Austin State University and the Interior Design Program but also working as part of the firm. Company policies regarding dress codes, smoking, piercings/tattoos, confidentiality, work schedules and procedures to follow when working with clients must be followed.
Student Liability Insurance
It is university policy that SFASU students participating in internships shall purchase and provide evidence of professional liability coverage. Liability coverage forms from SFASU are provided if you are an unpaid intern. Paid interns are covered under the liability insurance of the firm or business.
Interior Design students have enjoyed successful practicum experiences at diverse sites in the local community as well as metropolitan areas of Dallas, Houston, Austin, Chicago, etc.
Practicum sites have included:
- Michael Barnham Architects - Tyler, TX.
- Baron Design Group - Houston, TX
- Cantoni's - Dallas/Houston, TX
- Corgan, Inc. - Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
- Faulkner Design Group - Dallas, TX
- Furniture Market Group - Dallas, TX
- Judson P. Leonard Architects - Dallas, TX
- Lockwood, Andrews & Newman - Houston, TX
- Neiman Marcus - Dallas, TX
- Watkins, Hamilton, Ross Architects - Houston, TX
- Leo Daly Architects - Houston, TX