TMDA Internship Programme

25 August 2017

You are invited to participate in the TMDA Internship programme.

If your firm would like to offer an internship please contact Michael Campbell (NZPI AK Branch; ) or Bryce Julyan (Chair of NZPI).

GALA (Guangzhou /Auckland/ Los Angeles) Tripartite Economic Alliance

Auckland is a partner in the GALA Tripartite Economic Alliance. From that alliance the Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland) Design Alliance (TMDA) has been formed through the co-operation of the many design institutes and organisations that are involved in the design industry in Auckland, including the NZPI.

The 2017 Tripartite Economic Summit will be held in Guangzhou on 8-10 November. This is the third summit since the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding of Economic Alliance between Auckland, Guangzhou and Los Angeles in 2014, with previous summits held in Los Angeles (2015) and Auckland (2016). The theme of this year’s Summit is “Converging Innovation and Business Opportunities”, and includes a workstream on design and urban planning.

Tamaki Makaurau (Auckland) Design Alliance – GALA MOU Reciprocation

TDMA is proposing to host the GALA Tripartite Leadership Internship Programme as its reciprocation under the GALA MOU. This follows on from the Guangzhou Urban Planning and Design Survey Research Institute hosting their May 2017 Pearl River workshop and the Los Angeles Business Council recently hosting a tripartite category within their 47th Architectural Awards,

What is the Internship Programme?

The Programme is an opportunity for Auckland design studios or practices to host an intern from Los Angeles and Guangzhou for a 3 month internship period (Feb to April 2018 inclusive).

It is proposed to invite 2 interns from each city (that is, two from Los Angeles and two from Guangzhou).

The interns are proposed to be graduates with a minimum 2 years’ work experience in one of the following areas:

  • Architecture,
  • Architecture (Interior)
  • Urban planning/design,
  • Landscape architecture/ design

The successful interns will work within a host design firm so that they gain experience of working on a project or projects in a NZ context. This will provide an opportunity for them to contribute their own learnings and exchange ideas with other practitioners as well as learn from more experienced practitioners. It is expected that the interns and host organisation will exchange on a cultural and social level as well as a professional one.

Commencement Date

30 January 2018. This aligns with the Auckland Council induction week for their Graduate programme that TMDA’s interns have been invited to participate in. The internship is expected to be for 3 months, until the end of April 2018.

Who is Eligible?

Urban Planning/ Design, Architecture, Landscape Architecture or Interior Design Graduates with at least 2 years’ and up to 5 years’ experience.

How should the Interns be Selected?

Guangzhou and Los Angeles put forward 2 candidates they have selected. Each nominated candidate creates a video submission for TMDA showing how they would be an ambassador for their city, why they would want to come to New Zealand and what they want to get from the interin experience to take home.

The objectives of the intern programme is to support talented graduates as they launch their career and grow into our future leaders and specialists. Also to foster collaboration and sharing and nurture future thinking between our three cities..


  • Each intern will need to cover their own return airfare and any Immigration New Zealand visa costs
  • TMDA and the Auckland hosts will offer assistance with sourcing suitable accommodation. Any cost incurred will be the expense of the intern.
  • Each intern is paid an honorarium by their respective studio/practice, NZ$5000-$6000 for the three month period.

New Zealand Visa Requirements

Immigration New Zealand have advised the visa to apply for is Specific Purpose Work Visa.

Applicants will be assigned a case officer. This must be done by the applicant.

Social Get-Togethers

Monthly weekend activities will be planned with the Interns. There will be opportunities to bring the interns together with other young designers, and take them on a Kiwi experience — Waiheke/Piha/Auckland Art Gallery/Museum

Date Internship Applications Due By

In order to allow plenty of time for Immigration New Zealand visa application process we are requesting receipt of the internship applications from Guangzhou and LA no later than 30 September 2017.

Introduction of the Candidates at the Gz17 Tripartite Summit

TMDA will want to announce and introduce the successful interns at the Guangzhou Tripartite Summit 2017, either at the Urban Planning and Design Forum session or during the Auckland Showcase event on 10 November 2017.

Important Dates

  • 30 Sep 2017: LA and Guangzhou to submit to Auckland their 2 nominated interns
  • 16 Oct 2017: Auckland to have approved candidates and advise LA and Gz of acceptance
  • 10 Nov 2017: Auckland announces the internship programme and introduces the successful interns at Gz17 Summit
  • By the end of November: Interns to have submitted their visa application to Immigration New Zealand
  • 30 Jan 2018: Start internship commencing with participation in the Auckland Council Graduate induction programme
  • End of Apr: Internship concludes

TMDA Internship Supervisors – Leaders of this Programme

  • Cathy Veninga, Chief Executive Officer, The Designers Institute
  • Bryce Julyan, Chair, The New Zealand Planning Institute