Design Division for City of Charleston Seeks Fall Intern

Academic Internship Opportunity – Fall 2018

The Design Division, the City of Charleston’s in-house urban design studio, is seeking a qualified, creative and self-motivated student to join our team at the Charleston Civic Design Center beginning for the Fall 2018 semester.

  • Duration: August-December 2018 (Fall Semester)
  • Schedule: Part-time and flexible (122 hours total)
  • Compensation: Academic Internship Course Credits (3)

The intern will assist the Design Division and its civic partners in understanding and navigating the complex web of government bureaucracy in order to enable the implementation of placemaking programs and tactical urbanism projects in Charleston. Applicants are NOT required to have a design background, be enrolled in a design program, or have graphic production skills.

  • Conduct a policy and process audit to identify opportunities and constraints
  • Develop a database of potential leader/partner organizations in the Charleston area
  • Identify supportive organizations, funding opportunities, and other resources
  • Interview key stakeholders to catalog existing and emerging ideas
  • Research and summarize national best practices; determine appropriate applications for Charleston
  • Develop a “process map” and/or handbook for those interested in conducting sanctioned tactical urbanism projects in Charleston
  • Create materials to demonstrate the purpose of placemaking and tactical urbanism in Charleston
  • Good digital communications skills, including reasonable response time to e-mails, proper calendar event management, and professionally-composed messages
  • Basic workplace professionalism, including work-appropriate attire, respectful and engaged interpersonal communication, and the ability to take your work seriously
  • Willingness to listen, learn, contribute, collaborate and generate ideas
  • Taking initiative to explore design concepts, research precedents and solve problems
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office programs; willingness to learn Adobe InDesign

Applicants should submit a very brief statement of interest in the body of an e-mail with an attached resume to: Allen Davis, Director of Civic Design, at

The Charleston Civic Design Center, located at 85 Calhoun Street, is an urban design studio and public engagement event space operated by the City of Charleston. The center functions as a gallery, event venue, meeting space and information center for the general public about urban design and planning matters. The building is uniquely positioned to serve as a community design idea hub, using its physical shopfront and virtual interfaces to engage stakeholders in the design process.
The Charleston Civic Design Center is home to the Design Division, a part of the City’s Department of Planning, Preservation and Sustainability. Our current mission is to elevate the dialogue of civic design in the city and facilitate the creation of well-designed places.
The Design Division conducts a variety of urban design, site design, architectural and city planning operations ranging in scope and geographic context. Project deliverables involve internal exploration and analysis drawings for planning and design decision-making, technical writing and graphic design as part of a regulating and/or communication element, presentations to civic groups and City Council, signature Design Division report booklets, and various contributions to small site and master plans. The graphic quality of these deliverables ranges from notational/conceptual to highly-refined plans, sections, diagrams and perspective renderings.
The Design Division works collaboratively in a studio environment that embraces creativity and innovation, while keeping in mind the real and perceived constraints of projects. In addition to regular workshops and other meetings, we employ the National Charrette Institute model to conduct authentic design charrettes.
Our interns are exposed to urban design and planning practices in a municipal urban design studio. Design interns are mentored in our graphic methods and exposed to the political realities and stakeholders of their projects. Tasks may range in complexity from large-scale urban design projects to the day-to-day duties of operating a small design studio. Charleston is a growing and challenging urban environment, so interns will have a rapidly changing urban laboratory as the context of their work.
All interns will be exposed to skills, people and experiences that will contribute highly to their professional development. Those who demonstrate initiative and commitment will be given meaningful projects that will enhance their professional portfolios. Excellent interns will receive a letter of recommendation from the Director of Civic Design.


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