The IHDW/PCL Summer internship program is a unique blend of community arts programming and general support for the growth of the Institute for Human Development and Well-being and the Participatory Cultures Lab. Faculty of Arts students whoa are passionate about human development and well-being join our eight-week internship program to learn the ins and outs of what goes into research development, social media, event planning, and drafting proposals. The interns gain the opportunity to participate in arts-based projects which have taken place through collaborations with our extended family such as the McGill Art Hive Initiative operating through the Wellness Hub, Gender-based violence prevention projects, and other institutional initiatives. Interns lead and participate in a range of activities including funding development, leadership programs, social events, mentoring, knowledge mobilization, among others. While in a typical year approximately 50 % of the internship is spent in the community working in a child-focused initiative, since 2020 the program has adjusted to the Covid-19 pandemic, whereby the focus has shifted so that interns collaborate remotely on projects.
The internship is divided into "streams", under which a variety of projects take place. These streams reflect the way we conceptualize the various projects, whether it is involved in an international research project, an intervention with our local community, a graduate webinar, a community film festival, a conference highlighting our Indigenous youth partners, etc. The streams are organized by various headers such as the IHDW, PCL (Participatory Cultures Lab), MTW (More than Words), N4C (Networks4Change), PREAM, and others. While each set of interns leads the development of their respective streams, they are encouraged to work collaboratively in a way that fosters open dialogue and information sharing between all the projects under the IHDW umbrella. This method of working has been the practice of all members within the IHDW and it is part of our education initiative to foster the spirit of integrated, participatory, and active learning.