Name: Emma Adelman
Class Year: 2025
Major: Education and Growth and Structure of Cities
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Internship Organization: Street Lab
Job Title: Program Intern
Location: New York City
What's happening at your internship? We would love to hear what kind of work you are doing!
Street Lab is an organization that brings curricula like open libraries and play equipment to public areas across New York City. I'm helping to run its internship program for high schoolers. This particular program is devoted to making public chalk murals and learning about urban social issues. One of the issues we've spotlighted is shade inequality in NYC — specifically, the unequal distribution (and general shortage) of trees across the city. Outside of the high school programming, I'm also working alongside Street Lab designers to workshop new concepts for street curriculum. One of these is a public workshop designed to solicit ideas on how New Yorkers want to reshape the city.
Why did you apply for this internship?
I loved the idea of doing an internship that has both creative/conceptual elements and hands-on ones, and Street Lab's work achieves that in a way that aligns very closely with my academic interests. When I learned about Street Lab, I was drawn to its emphasis on temporary public infrastructure. Cities are fluid places, and we need infrastructure that can adapt to changing needs. It's exciting to imagine a future with fewer streets for cars and more spaces for people to play and relax. Through New York City's Open Streets program — and with curriculum like the kinds Street Lab provides — we have a model for what that might look like.
What has been your favorite part of this internship?
My favorite part of this internship is the brainstorming sessions I've participated in for new concept development. It's a really thrilling experience to brainstorm open-endedly about new materials and activities that we can bring into the mix in open streets and to do that collaboratively with people who care about public space and making it fun.
Can you give us three adjectives and three nouns that describe your internship experience?
Innovative, spontaneous, active
Pavement, pedestrian, play
Visit the Summer Internship Stories page to read more about student internship experiences.