Published on December 8, 2014

Design Internships in Latin America


Countries in Latin America are experiencing immense growth and are emerging as powerful players in today’s world market. In the past 20 years, poverty has declined sharply in Latin America, and innovative, homegrown companies are springing up in large numbers throughout the region. The cultural and natural diversity found within each country and between countries makes Latin America an incredible place to learn, grow, and experience something new. The world of design is thriving throughout Latin America, blending new and local innovations with the proven basics. Ranging from web and graphic design to product design, fashion design, and beyond, creative industries are alive and thriving in Latin America today. An internship in this region will test your boundaries, grow your experience, and give you unmatched access to an exciting industry in an emerging market.

With twenty sovereign states, Latin America hosts a population of over 604 million people. The majority of Latin American countries are experiencing significant annual increases in their Gross Domestic Product, which is a key sign of sound economic growth. Over 90% of Latin Americans speak either Spanish or Portuguese as their mother tongue, while more and more Latin Americans are also learning English today. Christianity, and largely Roman Catholicism, is the most prevalent religion in Latin America.

The natural beauty of this region is incredible. The continent is home to the globe’s most impressive rainforest, the Amazon, as well as countless other natural wonders. Interestingly, 80% of Latin Americans live in urban settings, making this region the most urbanized place on the map. The world has been watching the region closely, especially with the recent World Cup in Brazil and the upcoming Summer Olympics that also will take place in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Tourism is on the rise, and more foreigners are deciding to become “expatriates” in Latin American countries. As the cost of living is relatively low, weather is pleasant year-round, and the natural beauty of the countries and cities is unmatched, Latin America is an attractive region in which to resettle. People from all over the world are choosing to move to Latin America because of the affordability and high quality of life found there.

In addition to being able to set up a comfortable lifestyle in Latin America, you will have access to incredible travel and leisure opportunities as an intern. Football, dancing, and other athletic activities are wildly popular throughout the region. As an intern, you should have no problem making time for sports and maintaining your own health and wellness. For the curious minds, affordable buses keep the region well connected. Taking weekend trips to other cities and areas of your new home country is simple and will quench your thirst for exploration.

There is no such thing as an average day in Latin America. Living and working in this region, you will come to expect the unexpected. Daily life will be full of wondrous surprises, and boredom will certainly never set in. Latin America is comprised of a rich mixture of culture, races, histories, and present-day happenings. As an intern in Latin America, it is important that you learn about the culture, customs, and business etiquette in your new home country. Protocol and formality are expected and highly important throughout Latin America, especially in the business setting. Keeping an open mind and learning from your new colleagues will help you pick up on the intimate details of your placement quickly. Luckily, Latin Americans are known for being incredibly open, warm, and welcoming people.


Music, dancing, art, and food from Latin America are known world-round. The region is lauded for its spicy style, romantic hue, and powerful statements. Walking the urban streets of Latin America, you will quickly realize that art is everywhere. Bright colors and symbolic expression are found around each corner and street art is hugely popular, especially in Ecuador, Brazil, and Argentina. As a design intern, you will easily find inspiration within your placement company, from your colleagues, and in the beauty of everyday life in Latin America. Step outside your front door and you’ll easily be able to browse the food markets, explore local galleries, and listen to the street musicians. Undoubtedly, you too will catch a Latin fever that will influence and expand your design work.

Many world-renowned fashion houses are based in Latin America, and thanks to advantageous trade agreements and the world’s increasing globalization, their designs are influencing others throughout the region and the globe. The term fashionista, commonly used to describe someone with a keen fashion sense, is a blend of the base “fashion” and the Spanish suffix “ista.” Latin American fashion designers continue to increase in number, and for the fashion-focused intern, this region is prime for learning and expanding your resume.

Additionally, the sectors of architecture, web design, graphic design, photography, and product design all have a strong hold throughout Latin America. Some of the most influential new art trends of today are coming out of the emerging markets of Latin America. Through collaborations between small companies, artists, designers, and local craftsmen, Latin America is showing the world new ways of creating, designing, and innovating. Recycling and up-cycling are also common trends in the region, making for sustainable production and green design.

A region that is on the up-and-up, Latin America is a place in which you won’t regret spending significant time. You will have access to cutting-edge design, will have opportunities to connect with industry leaders and innovators, and will be able to test your skills with hands-on work at your internship. The culture, beauty, and flare of Latin America are intoxicating. Life will be far from boring, and you will easily find inspiration in your new surroundings and daily life. Working in Latin America will open doors both inside and outside of the region. Simply put, you will get outside of your comfort zone, experience unmatched natural beauty, expand your resume, and have a blast as a design intern in Latin America.

To experience the beauty of Latin America while also interning at a top international firm, apply now and start the adventure!

Sources: Latin America, Latin American Fashion, New Territories

Photo 1. based on MEDELLIN - ANTIOQUIA, by Iván Erre Jota, CC BY-SA 2.0

Photo 2. based on guatape, by Jenny Cardona, CC BY 2.0

The author
Jaime O'Neill

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