Roles & Responsibilities


Architecture students can also be interns. Take charge of your professional development. Review IDP eligibility criteria and establish a NCARB record when you intend to start tracking experience hours. IDP offers the flexibility to complete experience hours at your pace, in any order. Interns are encouraged to establish an NCARB record early and log experience hours frequently. Students can seek internships outside of the academic year or as part of their education requirement.

Use the Emerging Professional's Companion to gain credit that may be difficult to obtain in one office environment. Interns are encouraged to report progress regularly to their IDP supervisors or mentors and identify specific areas where they need credit. EPC activities provide interns with the opportunity to augment their portfolio, demonstrating knowledge and competencies to advance their career. Be proactive; identify your potential supervisors, speak with local IDP Coordinators and find a mentor. While completing the IDP, interns may have multiple supervisors, and as many mentors as needed. Find more intern resources via the NCARB Experience Through Internships webpage.

ARE Candidates

Interns can be ARE® Candidates.The Architect Registration Examination® (ARE®) can be completed concurrently with IDP in most states, allowing interns to shorten the time to complete their licensing requirements. The Emerging Professional's Companion can be used to compliment an ARE® candidate's study materials, or provide a discussion framework for group study.


EPC activities can be integrated into existing curriculum or introduced independently to underscore particular topics. Educators can present practice-based problems found in firms in the classroom. Educators can use the EPC while leading a studio course, in a professional practice lecture, or AIA Continuing Education session. However, for an intern to earn EPC activity hours, work must be completed outside the NCARB education requirement. Depending on circumstances, educators may be eligible to act as IDP supervisors, mentors, or coordinators.

IDP Supervisors & Mentors

IDP Supervisors oversee interns on a daily basis and regularly assess the quality of work performed. In most jurisdictions, for IDP experience settings A and O, supervisors must be licensed in a U.S. or Canadian jurisdiction, but not necessarily in the jurisdiction where the intern is located. In some experience settings, IDP supervisors can be professionals from other disciplines.

Supervisors meet with interns regularly to assess progress and approve the intern's documentation of experience hours. At the same time, the supervisor can review any EPC completed work and provide feedback on final work product. The supervisor is not responsible for IDP record-keeping; documentation is the intern's responsibility. However, the supervisor must digitally certify that activities submitted by the intern have been completed. To complete EPC activites, interns may request access to project documents and stakeholder contacts outside their project team or studio.

Mentors advise interns, discussing problems and aspirations. Ideally, the intern will select a mentor whom s/he knows well—perhaps a professor, seasoned colleague or former employer—who shares a professional philosophy. Interns may reach out to mentors in person, by telephone or email. Interns meet with their mentors periodically to discuss IDP progress and career goals. During that time, the mentor can also review EPC activity work completed by the intern, and provide guidance on the final work product. The mentor, like a supervisor, can digitally certify that activities submitted to NCARB by the intern are completed. For this purpose, the mentor must be a licensed architect. Architects who serve as mentors do not have to be licensed in the state where the intern is located. To complete EPC activities, interns may ask for a mentor's permission to attend project meetings, access to project documents, or consultant contacts. A mentor can help an intern gain IDP credit, even for just a day.


Whether your firm is starting in-house education, or supplementing an existing program, the EPC is a valuable resource for content. The EPC provides a means to help interns earn difficult-to-obtain IDP hours (consult your firm's interns and supervisors). Parallel workshops and study groups are an excellent way to bring together those emerging professionals completing EPC activities. Experts from your firm can lead the sessions, or contact your local AIA component for experts who may be able to help develop a program. Don't forget that related workshops can be offered as continuing education credit to architects if your firm is an AIA/CES Continuing Education provider.

IDP Coordinators

NCARB administers the IDP Coordinator Program. For more information visit

IDP Educator Coordinators act as a liaison between schools of architecture, NCARB and AIA. These coordinators act as a liaison between schools of architecture, NCARB and AIA. The IDP Educator Coordinator must be familiar with how to use the EPC in the classroom and be willing to support colleagues within their school. The IDP Educator Coordinator is the contact for students seeking information about the IDP. NCARB provides up-to-date, credible presentations and resources to coordinators. The IDP Educator Coordinator position description and roster are available on the NCARB IDP Coordinators webpage.

IDP State Coordinators are appointed by the AIA and are the state-level contact for firms and interns. The State Coordinator must know how to include EPC in developing workshop series, study groups, and in-house firm education programs. The IDP State Coordinator is also the general contact for individual interns who may be seeking IDP information. The IDP State Coordinator position description and roster are available on the NCARB IDP Coordinators webpage.

IDP Auxiliary Coordinators are self-appointed individuals who volunteer to educate their firms and communities about IDP. To help those responsible for the administration of firm education programs, EPC narratives and activities can be used as program content. Any firm employee that supports interns can sign up as an IDP Auxiliary Coordinator by emailing The IDP Auxiliary Coordinator position description is available on the NCARB IDP Coordinators webpage.

AIA Components

AIA Components play a significant role supporting firms with continuing education such as discussion/study groups, mentoring programs, and workshops addressing current practice issues. The Emerging Professional's Companion narratives and activities can be used as content for continuing education programs. AIA Components can connect interns, supervisors, mentors, coordinators and act as a conduit supplying information and resources on the licensure process. Locate an AIA component near you.