Sango Imai-Hall is an alumni of the Santa Fe University of Art and Design (SFUAD). He worked as an intern in the SITE’s External Affairs Department from September – December 2014. These are his final reflections on his experience at SITE upon completing his internship.
Interning at SITE Santa Fe was a pleasure. Within the first couple days of the internship, I already felt as though I were part of the team. When entering an internship with an organization you worry that you might be given the menial grunt work that no one else wants to do. At SITE, I was immediately granted responsibility and the independence to perform tasks as I saw best. My skills in writing, proofreading, organizing, and archiving were recognized and utilized by my supervisor, Anne Wrinkle. I felt useful and was trusted to perform any task she asked of me, from creating print and digital press archives to minor technology troubleshooting.
Anne was very kind, straightforward, and helpful whenever I had questions. Better still, when she wasn’t available, I found the same attitude among the whole SITE staff. If I ever needed something, had a question, or wasn’t sure how to proceed, someone was always happy to help. I tried to adopt this attitude while working in the office and at the front desk, helping visitors and directing calls. Getting to work in multiple departments was an illuminating experience, like getting to view an object from different angles. When artist Janet Abrams visited, I had the pleasure of meeting her at the front desk; later, I found myself editing the e-blast announcing her as a finalist for the SPREAD 5.0 micro-granting initiative (which she ended up winning).
As a student at Santa Fe University of Art and Design (SFUAD), I was happy to see so many of my teachers and colleagues from school at the SPREAD dinner, which illustrates how closely and successfully SITE connects with the local education community. When I applied for the internship, I already knew Amanda Lee and Joanne Lefrak of the Education Department from their visits to SFUAD, further showing how small the gap is between SITE and SFUAD. Three of my teachers from school were nominated for the SPREAD grant, Jane Lackey, Tom Miller, and Willy Bo Richardson. All of the artist finalists were amazing to see onstage, and I got to work behind the scenes and to chat with the artists. It was a fun event, one of many I’ve enjoyed at SITE.
I am gratified and honored to have been a part of this great institution and this wonderful team, and I heartily recommend the internship program to any student with a passion for art.