Leading the Future - Meet BNIM's Summer Interns

Leading the Future - Meet BNIM's Summer Interns

With the opportunity to bring new energy, perspectives, and curiosity together with professional expertise and a depth of design experience, internships are a catalyst for innovation in the workplace.

Not only are BNIM’s student interns bringing leading-edge skills and ideas to our studios and projects this summer, but these impressive young professionals are also helping make way for critical change in the industry in emphasizing equity, diversity, inclusivity, and sustainability in design.

A Commitment to the Future Profession

Internships have enabled BNIM to invest in and get to know the next generation of designers and professionals in the field. Often internships are just the beginning of a continued collaboration as our former interns become our future industry peers or our future colleagues who return to work with the firm full-time after graduation.

We want our interns to learn and grow in their time at BNIM, and in the same way, our teams embrace the opportunity learn from students’ fresh approaches to design as well as their passions and initiatives for the future of the profession. In addition to our collegiate summer intern group, BNIM team members Will Trakas and James Baker also recently worked with Pro X, a high school internship program that aims to help students across the Kansas City metro gain professional experience in different fields and develop their skills in financial literacy. The program enables BNIM to introduce younger students to architecture and to help positively impact diversity within the industry.

Learning By Doing

Important for both academic and professional development, internships are a great way to gain practical and hands-on experience, to extend education beyond the classroom/studio to 'learn by doing,’ and to collaborate with people at all professional experience levels.

During their time at BNIM, students’ work matters, and they hold active roles on our studio teams, contributing their work and insights to our projects. We want our student interns to have the opportunity to extend their knowledge from the classroom into real projects while exploring their areas of interest, whether that be learning about our firm's information technology systems; the details of the design process involving team communication, project schedules, and budgets; or how BNIM incorporates sustainability into each design.

Advocacy and Mentorship

We understand collaboration, advocacy, and mentorship to be essential in supporting employees in the workplace. Just like our full-time staff members, BNIM’s interns are assigned an advocate at the beginning of the summer who is a resource for questions and helping them determine and achieve their professional goals for the summer. Many BNIM colleagues also support their intern team members through mentorship and can offer advice from the perspective of a former intern or architectural graduate starting in the industry, building their skillsets, as well as growing professional networks.

“Bringing in these really talented, energetic interns helps reinvigorate our whole staff. They have so much fascination and enthusiasm and having them join BNIM this summer provides a shot of that energy into our project teams. As a mentor, I try to be available, to create an open line of dialogue and to check in regularly to make sure things are going well from a project perspective and that she is getting the opportunities to help her continue to grow professionally. I think that is what mentorship is all about - to have someone there to be that sounding board, to listen, and to give advice.”  
- Andrew Mixdorf, AIA | Associate and Mentor to BNIM Interns


We are excited to introduce our fantastic intern group and to share what they have been up to at BNIM this summer:

BNIM discipline: Architecture
Studying: Architecture at the University of Kansas
Hobbies/Passions: Spending time in nature, participating in group events and activities, and sharing good meals with friends. Right now, I am most passionate about civil engagement and food sovereignty.
Songs on repeat: I am always listening to the 1975’s discography and recently discovered a Korean artist called Sunwoojunga whose experimental sound I really enjoy.
Favorite Architectural style: Traditional Japanese style or Scandinavian functionalist style
Summer projects: University of Nebraska-Lincoln School of Music – Working on schematic design studies and tests; Research Project – Focusing on applications of urban agriculture and community gardens.


BNIM discipline: Interior Design & Graphic Design
Studying: Interior Design with a minor in Art at Pittsburg State University
Hobbies/Passions: I enjoy self-expression during my free time: drawing, writing, listening to music, dancing, watching anime and movies with my friends, and window shopping
Songs on repeat: Eye to Eye by Jordan Rakei, Kickin’ Back by Mila J, Violin by Cookiee Kawaii, Washing Machine Heart by Mitski, It’s Code by Janelle Monae, Suite IV Electric Overture by Janelle Monae
Favorite architectural style: Gothic style
Current summer projects: University of Nebraska-Lincoln School of Music - Admin suite; Looking forward to potential work with Ronald McDonald House of Kansas City


BNIM discipline: Information Technology / Systems
Studying: Computer Science at the University of Missouri
Hobbies/Passions: Playing sports, going to the lake with my family, playing video games, and always trying to learn about new technologies and gain more understanding of how the world works.
Songs on repeat: Blinding Lights by The Weeknd
Current summer projects: New Laptops – Setting up new laptops, getting them ready to give out as well as clearing old computers to be recycled



BNIM discipline: Architecture
Studying: Architecture with a minor in Urban Studies at Iowa State University
Hobbies/Passions: I would say I’m passionate about learning new things, whether it be a random fact, skill, or party trick. Currently in my free time I’m learning how to golf, speak a second language, and jump rope with extreme style.
Songs on repeat: Any music that's pre-2010s because I already know all the words and can belt them out accordingly. I would say I'm more of a podcast person, though, when I need some background noise.
Favorite architectural style: Modern architectural style
Current summer projects: Private Office Building - Focused on skylight design, understanding how environmental factors and fabrication would affect each proposal, and learning how to work with codes and constraints to make the best and safest design possible



BNIM discipline: Architecture
Studying: Architecture with a minor in Sustainability
Hobbies/Passions: I have recently been doing a lot of biking, but given the chance I really enjoy hiking and traveling
Songs on repeat: Less Than Zero by the Weeknd
Favorite architectural style: Structural expressionism

Current summer projects: Iowa State University Therkildsen Hall – Graphics; Las Vegas Downtown Civic Center – Developing fritted glass patterns



BNIM discipline: Architecture
Studying: Architecture at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, following earning a BSD in Interior Design
Hobbies/Passions: Spending time outside (if I’m able to beat the Nebraska humidity or sub-zero temperatures.). Anytime I can take advantage of laying on a picnic blanket- reading, water coloring, listening to music, or spending time with friends- I’m happy. When I can find the time, I love taking hiking trips and visiting National Parks.
Songs on repeat: Blue by Lavender, Mercy Mercy Me by Lucky Daye, Harry Style’s new album, Harry’s House and anything by Remi Wolf
Favorite architectural style: Architecture that expresses its construction of materiality, utilizes light in intentional ways, or encourages movement. Ultimately, I care about space that is meaningful to its users, tells a story, and is positively impactful.
Current summer projects: University of Nebraska-Lincoln School of Music – Having a hands-on approach to Schematic Design, working with consultants, and problem solving as a team and contributing useful insight into the city, student body, and site

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