Navigant Consulting – First impressions of my internship – Adam McDonald

Walking into my internship with Navigant Consulting on my first day, I was equal parts excited and nervous. Personally, I believe this is the best possible combination. Excitement demonstrates that you are in the right place, that you are following a path that will be fulfilling and worthwhile. Nerves demonstrate that you are leaving your comfort zone, a feeling quite consistent with the Lawrence experience. Like at Lawrence, being outside of your comfort zone is the best place to learn and grow.
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Lyric Opera – First impressions of my internship – Margaret McNeal

My first two weeks interning with the Lyric Opera were highly atypical: I am interning for their Lyric Unlimited Division’s Chicago Voices Initiative; part of this initiative is Chicago Sing, a project which asks people all over Chicago to celebrate their city across genres and abilities through song. For Chicago Sing, I rode around in a van with a producer, videographer, and a handful of rotating team members. As the Lawrence intern, they tasked me with attending all six van days, for a total of forty hours. We drove to multiple locations a day, set up a station, and solicited people from the street to sing for us. We then took videos of their performances and are creating an online public archive of Chicago voices (can be found here: The project is “for fun” but is also clever marketing for the Lyric: after each person sang, they were awarded branded prizes (bubbles, t-shirts, buttons, pens, etc.). I was tasked with handing out prizes. This was an interesting initial tour of the city, as I went to many, many different neighborhoods and interacted with hundreds of people; however, it was also not at all what I would expect my duties to be with this internship. While I may not have learned any readily applicable skills to my interests in the process of handing out prizes in the heat for forty hours, I did gain an appreciation for all that goes into planning and executing a large scale initiative.
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Weill Music Institute – My first month – Daniel Bernstei

It’s so hard to believe that I am now one month into my internship at the Weill Music Institute. I have learned so much from my team and everyone at WMI, and every day at my internship has been incredibly fulfilling and exciting. In the office, I have been splitting my time between production and programming work, and I’m even leading a few major projects for Family Programs! On the production side, I have been updating and preparing all of the concert production sheets, marketing templates, and artist press kits for Neighborhood Concerts, which has involved a lot of researching and compiling of information given to us by artists and other staff. On the programming side, I am project managing the program design of Family Days, which are two weekends during the season where families come to Carnegie Hall and take part in a fun, interactive series of musical experiences. As project manager, I have been responsible for leading our meetings, developing preliminary programming ideas and themes, and coordinating our decisions going forward regarding which artists to book and which activities to design. Next week, I will begin managing the programming process for one of next year’s Family Concerts, as well as developing a social media plan for all of Family Programs. My supervisor has been amazing to learn from and work with; as someone who has been interested in learning about the creation of community-focused musical experiences for a long time, it is very inspiring to learn from someone who has so many years of experience producing such successful programs in a variety of settings.
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Center for Deep Listening – My first month – Benjamin Hanson

The last month has gone really well for me; I’ve had a number of different projects to work on as a part of my internship while also having free time to relax and work on projects of my own.

My biggest project has been collaborating with Tomie, the director of the Center for Deep Listening, and a cognitive science professor at the university here on a study that they conducting over the past two years. The study involved having the participants do creative exercises like drawing and free writing under different conditions, and my job is to develop systems of analysis for the results of these creative activities to find patterns in the data that we can correlate to more concrete measurements, like heart rate or hormone levels, with the eventual goal of identifying some relationships between levels of stress and creativity in the participants. It has been a fascinating project to work on and I have a huge amount of flexibility with both my scheduling and with my methodology, which has been really liberating. It’s been a lot of fun to apply some of the artistic analysis skills I developed at LU in classes like Music Theory and Literary Analysis to a real-world project like this.
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World Business Chicago – My first month – Dylan Geary

This past month with CASE, I have been involved in numerous projects and activities. Although I have had a continuous work stream during my time at CASE, this month has been particularly exciting because I have seen some of my work utilized in large-scale initiatives.

My main focus has been centered around creating Anchor Action Plans, which will serve as a framework of each organization’s goals and implementation plans. This framework will be used to drive institutional impact and thereby promote community vitality across Chicago. The structure involved determining key stakeholders within each organization includes:

  • Defining each stakeholder’s role
  • Providing an index of possible institutional goals and best practices across other institutions
  • Identifying organizational and community indicators
  • Establishing a project plan for implementation of these goals
  • Developing a feedback loop.

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Center for Deep Listening – First impressions of my internship – Benjamin Hanson

I’m spending my summer as an intern with the Center for Deep Listening in Troy, New York. In the first week I joined an intensive summer course in deep listening which has been wonderful to be a part of! It is exciting to have the chance to practice listening every day and to really dig into music making and listening with new people and in a totally different environment than I’m used to. The class consists mostly of engineering students, and I have found it really eye-opening to be in a music class with people from a primary discipline outside of the arts. Every day they bring perspectives to the music we create and listen to that I would never have considered.
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