my internship experience

Michael Lepore '12, a Graphic Design major and Wesson Honors student from Salem, N.H., was a design intern this summer at Crop Marks Design Studio in Concord, N.H. Crop Marks is an award-winning creative services firm specializing in graphic design and web site design solutions for businesses of all sizes.

Lepore is president of the design club Grid at Colby-Sawyer and in previous summers has worked as a graphic designer for the printing program at his high school as well a freelance graphic designer.

Why did you choose this internship? What was the application process like?

When I was looking at design firms close to me, Crop Marks Design seemed the best option. The agency is small and independent, which allowed me to get better work experience, receive more individual attention and ultimately learn more. As far as applying, I sent an inquiry email and came in for an interview before being offered the position.

What skills are required for this internship and what are your responsibilities?

For an internship like this one needs creative thinking and graphic design skills as well as knowledge of the proper software. My job description included assisting with production of direct mail campaigns, advertisements, brochures, web site edits and maintenance, digital file preparation, archiving, and image editing.

Have your course work and studies helped prepare you for this job?

My courses were very helpful in helping me prepare for this internship. The ones drew from the most were some of the more recent courses I have taken like Typography, Graphic Design II and Advertising.

What have you enjoyed most, and what have you found most challenging about your internship?

What I've enjoyed most about the job are its creative aspects. Working creatively to solve problems and create work that fulfills a client's needs, and in the end creating something that both you and the client are proud of, is a great feeling. It's exciting and challenging and each day is different from the last.

Things in general were pretty fun and enjoyable. We do a lot of different projects and choosing one or another is kind of tricky.

What have you learned and what skills have you developed during your internship?

I learned a lot more than just design at this internship. Since the agency is small, I learned everything from how to run a business and how to manage clients to important production techniques and how graphic materials are produced.

What has this experience taught you about yourself and your field of study?

It taught me that I've chosen a degree and a career path that I enjoy working in and learning more about. I look forward to the future.

Please share one or two memorable experiences from your internship.

One cool experience was when we took a tour of Cummings Printing in Hooksett. It was amazing to see their large scale printing presses used for publications and all the technology they use. They also put our names up on the bulletin board in the main lobby to welcome us, which was pretty cool as well.

Another cool experience was a summer sweepstakes project we designed for Clayhouse Wines. We worked to come up with a name, theme and imagery for their Sip into Summer campaign and then just a few weeks later we got to see these designs printed and on display in the store.

Is Colby-Sawyer's requirement of completing an internship beneficial?

It certainly is, and I'm glad that I did it.