Design Internship in it worth it? looking for advice

I am a junior at a design school in Michigan and I have just recently been chosen to be a summer design intern at The Wahlrich Group, LLC in New York City ( It seems as though it is a very high profile and highly sought after position and I was absolutely thrilled to be offered it. However, there will be little compensation because the position is non-paying and living expenses will not be covered.

I’m just wondering if the financial costs of living and working in NYC will be worth the experience I will receive as far as furthing my design career.

I know very little about the company itself and I’ve never been to NYC and am not sure what to expect. If anyone has any thoughts on my situation, I’d love to hear them. Thanks!


I think go for it. Do you have other internship options? I would not wait until your senior year to start getting into interning. I think jump at chances early as possible.

As for NYC. I know that NYU and New School University offer student housing to students who are interning for the summer in nyc. You should look into contacting the housing dept. for these schools and figure out if that is a possibility.


NYU housing is definitely an option. I stayed there back in 1998 when I was interning and it was a blast. Check other schools there for the same deal.

if you can afford it then go for it. See it as a summer school. Sometimes you have to do the free placement thing just to get on your first rung of the ladder.

How long is it for?

Hey thanks for the advice so far…I hadn’t even considered university housing but that seems like a great idea.

To answer some questions…I currently am working full time for the summer in Michigan, so I’d have to give up a pretty decent summer income in order to move out to NYC so I feel that this is another issue that I need to consider.

The internship is set to start in early June and go through the end of August.

I’m also thinking to myself… if it comes down to it, would I be a fool to turn down an internship in New York? I don’t know, it seems that people are in favor of me going to NYC, but financially, it may not be in the cards. So any more suggestions or input would be great. Thanks!


whatever your summer job in Michigan is - it will in no way compare to the long term value to your career of interning in NY. The networking alone could land you a job upon graduation.
the proffesional work on your resume and in your portfolio will contribute greatly to getting a paid internship next summer or job when you graduate.

the financial pain is short term.