Imagine spending months immersed in the joyful, busy, and creative work of our folk school. Your days as an intern are filled with coursework, projects to explore the inner workings of an educational non-profit, campus hosting and logistical wrangling, and countless moments to learn from students and instructors excited about craft. Our internship is a launching point for individuals interested in gaining a broad exposure to traditional Northern craft, learning about non-profit administration, and exploring their own professional pathway in education and craft. Ideal intern candidates are passionate about craft, curious to learn, and happy when pitching in on tasks large and small to help make our folk school run.
The goals of the craft education internship include:
- Nurturing appreciation for the future of traditional craft through focused education and skill development in craft as well as through relationship building with instructors and students.
- Increasing awareness of and exposure to various responsibilities and opportunities involved in non-profit education, administration and program management.
- Developing and strengthening educational leadership skills by engaging in public outreach, facilitating small-group learning experiences and creating a positive and supportive learning environment for students of all ages.
Each year, the four interns live in community in a beautiful loft overlooking the harbor on our campus. In addition to provided housing, interns receive a modest living stipend and a stipend for course tuition and materials during their internship. We are a dynamic, educational nonprofit committed to teaching traditional northern crafts while fostering lifelong learning. Our curriculum emphasizes hands-on learning and includes courses ranging from timber framing to northern ecology, birch bark weaving to artisan bread baking.
Hear from Former Interns
Two former interns share their perspectives on the internship and talk about what they went on to do afterwards in North House's 20th Anniversary video below. The video is queued up to begin at the intern interviews, but we'd recommend starting from the beginning and watching the whole thing if you have the time — it's worth it!
Lauren has always been drawn to the boreal forests of the north. Wheedled by their whimsy, she’s spent countless hours walking, skiing, running, and biking within them. The forests have left Lauren with a deep curiosity, and a strong sense of reverence for the Earth. With undergraduate degrees in English, Norwegian, and environmental studies from St. Olaf College, Lauren has been exploring the way that Nordic folktales and craft traditions have influenced the nature-culture divide in Scandinavia. As a steward of the environment, she strongly believes in the power of storytelling through writing, illustrating, making, and moving. A few years of teaching Kindergarten at a Waldorf school in Minneapolis introduced Lauren to even more craft and handwork. This fall, she realized it was time to return to the boreal forests. She left the Kindergarten for a few months of farming in Sweden, where she weeded, woodworked, baked bread, and bottled apple cider. She is eager to continue crafting with her hands at North House Folk School, and is certainly delighted to be back in the northern forests of her home state.
Gracee accepted the position as a 2024 North House Intern on her 23rd birthday. She was on a walk around a neighborhood in Minneapolis that she had grown to know well. Having graduated college a few months prior, she was patiently awaiting direction. She figured it would come when the time was right. In many facets, Gracee does not know what she is looking for but is certain she will know when she sees it. Moving to Grand Marais was one of these instances. Entering a community of artists and makers (a distinction worthy of conversation) brings about a sense of abundance in warmth and potential. Much of her experience lies within the digital realms of design and video production, though pen and paper are Gracee’s most frequently utilized mediums. Drawn towards color, form, and texture, she anticipates feeling a fondness towards fiber. Perhaps the most exciting part of this program to Gracee is all the humans to be met and connections to be made. She intends to keep an open mind and heart to all that will come her way throughout her time at North House.
Julia grew up in Illinois, and has consistently felt drawn up north. She loves to romp around in the woods and spend quality time with the many rivers and lakes of Minnesota.
Julia loves to work with her hands. She fell in love with craft as a kid playing in the dirt and sleeping under her grandma’s knit blankets, and again as an adult eating out of a wooden bowl for the first time or serving a friend coffee from a wheel thrown mug. Julia believes that care and beauty are essential to utility. The practice of making, with the intention of routine use and shared beauty, felt deeply meaningful to them growing up and it continues to today.
Julia recently moved back to the Midwest from Washington, where she spent a year and a half managing a ceramics studio in the North Cascades. As a potter, she values her relationship with clay and fire, and she is excited to deepen her creative relationship with the natural world here in Northern Minnesota. She’s looking forward to learning new skills and stories from the many incredible craftspeople at North House.
Phil has been chilling since day 1.
Gracee says: Phil's computer is so large, but they guess it is proportionate to his large size. Phil thinks he is a metalworker. He has the most experience in this after all. He also built saunas for a minute. Maybe more wood is in the cards. He likes to share his knowledge (which appears to be vast). He spends time hunched over his gigantic computer looking up model airplanes and ancient religions.
Phil likes to make noises and also likes to be seen. Even so, he prefers to live unperceived beyond the physical realm. He drinks the liquid from the top of yogurt and makes himself a french press in the morning. He sits in gratitude for the food in front of him. Phil is 27, which is basically 30. He thinks about the future all the time and still claims to be present. I don’t doubt that he is, but the conversation is ongoing. Phil has bounced between craft schools for the months prior to now; North House serves as a resting place for the next 10 months. He has finished yogurt slurping, deep exhale, and computer returns to its owner.
And oh yes, Phil grew up in upstate New York. Was a teaching assistant with ten year olds for a bit. And worked on a trailcrew for about a year. He has an Aussie that he misses very much, and is #sososososo excited to be here.
Mazzy grew up in St. Paul, MN, visiting the North Shore every year with her family on camping trips. It was through these trips that she fell in love with this northern landscape. After graduating in the peak of the 2020 pandemic, she decided to forgo the standard career path and instead for the past three years has been working on the Gunflint Trail, soaking in the beauty and magical presence of Northern Minnesota.
Mazzy nurtured an interest in craft since childhood, jumping on any opportunity to create. She loves working with fiber, but is so excited for this opportunity to learn about all types of craft. Outside of North House, Mazzy loves to canoe, travel, read, and watch bad movies.
Laura is an illustrator, community artist, and educator who grew up in a boisterous family of six with the abundance of free time and nature. After teaching ESL and arts education, she decided to pursue a more creative life as far from computer screens as possible. As a craft education intern, she is excited to learn more about traditional craft and the way making things by hand can foster connections to ourselves, each other, and our local natural environment.
Emma was born and raised in Saint Paul, MN, and spent her childhood doing hands-on learning, creating endless craft projects, and playing outside. Post-high school, Emma began studying theater arts but quickly changed paths, ultimately completing a degree in sociology. Since graduation, she has worked as an independent framing carpenter, and believes that we all deserve comfortable, functional, and beautiful living spaces. At North House, Emma is excited to explore all aspects of craft (she is a firm believer in the lesser known second half of the "Jack of all trades" saying), soak up as much knowledge as possible, and begin honing her ability to teach.
Dani was born in the Midwest, though her only memory of her time there was getting hit in the face with a snowball before moving to California, where she grew up. She has lived in several states since then including Vermont, Colorado, and Montana, where she has worked for conservation non-profits and as a Wilderness-EMT. Though she has always had a love for craft, it wasn’t until she spent a winter in Northern Montana producing wooden spoons for a gift shop outside Glacier National Park that she realized she could earn a living as a maker.
She recently moved from Reno, Nevada where she taught power-carving workshops at the local makerspace, The Reno Generator, where she was also a member of a collective of women makers known as the Design-Build Collective.
Dani is so excited for all there is to learn at North House, especially in regards to woodcraft and boatbuilding, that she is looking forward to getting hit in the face by winter in the Midwest once more.
Past Interns: 2022
Preston Dorsett was born and raised in Minneapolis, though his family is from the Bahamas. As a child he spent much of his time exploring downtown and hanging out at his dad's clothing store in the skyways. He comes from a family of teachers and is excited to see how that heritage combines with his love of design and craft. Recently he's been involved with Juxtaposition arts in North Minneapolis as a teaching assistant and has been making furniture out of concrete, wood and steel with Keith Wyman of Concrete Pig.
Lin grew up in the DC area but has spent the last 6 years in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. She developed her appreciation for design and craft by studying industrial furniture design at Appalachian State University, taking local craft classes, restoring pre-Columbia artifacts, and assistant teaching as well as developing her own work during her fellowship at UNCA STEAM Studio. Lin hopes to advance her skills in craft education and explore more facets of sustainable craft during her time at North House. IG @linelkinsdesign
Delaney Keshena (Menomini) is from a train-bound border town in sleepy, north-central Wisconsin. While living on unceded Tiwa territory, they studied at the Institute of American Indian Arts (read: they desperately miss open sky and green chile). Delaney uses craft to examine intersections of language and power through ceramics and poetry. When not making work that challenges prescribed notions of Indigeneity, Delaney enjoys reading, getting lost in the NYT's “what to cook this week" section and paddle-powered water travel.
Delaney is grateful to the North House Folk School for this opportunity to learn and live on the North Shore. IG: @freeipadsforlife
Bozena was born and raised in the Minnesota River Valley. She is grateful for experiences of beauty and complexity in different parts of Minnesota, and is very excited to be spending the next several months living on the North Shore. She loves to swim, cook, and run around outside. Bozena is looking forward to weaving, woodcarving, and making music at North House!
Past Interns: 2021
Alex grew up in the Chicagoland area. She has lived for brief stints across the country where she worked as a white water raft guide, ranch hand, and organic farmworker before setting down roots in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After several years working in housing-related nonprofits, Alex left the office to work with her hands as a residential remodel carpenter. In her free time you'll find her hiking, sewing, swimming, reading books and building things.
Wesley grew up in Indiana and has also lived in Arizona and Alaska. Growing up being creative was always encouraged, whether it was playing an instrument, drawing, or just cutting up popsicle sticks. Wesley spent 6 years in the Air Force which is how he stumbled upon a folk school in Fairbanks, Alaska and got exposed to craft. Fast Forward and he is now interning at North House Folk School with the hopes of learning more about the wonderful word of craft.
Growing up in Eau Claire, WI, Lauren was always told by her mother, "If you are bored, use your hands and make something." She developed her admiration for design, strength of wood, and traditional craft while rebuilding a 1850s dovetail log cabin and studying woodworking and furniture design at UW-Madison. Exploring early American craft history, she is interested in breathing new life into antique tools and methods. Lauren is excited to advance tactile processes at North House through woodworking, weaving, picking berries, and baking bread.
Mary (she/her) grew up in a small town in southwestern Pennsylvania, but has been enjoying life in the Pacific Northwest for the last 17 years. Now finished with her corporate career, Mary enjoys cycling, fly fishing, cat wrangling, cooking, board games, camping, looking at birds (but not knowing what they are!), and spending time with her partner Amy. An avid maker and fixer of things, she discovered green wood carving 4 years ago and has never gone more than a few days without carving something—a spoon, a spatula or more recently, fanbirds! She can't wait to dive in and be a part of the North House community for this season.