At a minimum, applicants must have an undergraduate degree in a preservation-related field, such as architecture, landscape architecture, or architectural conservation, with coursework and/or experience in preservation. Although there are no age restrictions, the program is designed for those nearing the end of their graduate programs (usually 2nd-year students) or those who have been working professionally for 1-3 years. There are no exceptions to these limits, due to the popularity of the program.
Candidates are asked to submit a curriculum vitae, two letters of recommendation, a 500-word essay describing their reasons for wanting to participate in the program, and examples of their work. All applications are reviewed by a volunteer professional jury that makes recommendations for intern selection and placement. The application materials for recommended interns are then forwarded to the respective host organizations for review and approval. Only after the host organization has approved the intern will the applicant be notified which internship he/she has been assigned.
Interns are selected on the basis of demonstrated skills, commitment to historic preservation, previous experience and academic concentration in the field, as well as their ability to represent their country in an exchange program. Importantly, interns are chosen whose skills, training, interest and previous experience match the needs of host organizations. Therefore, not all qualified intern applicants will be recommended for the program, since there are always more qualified applicants than internships and the qualifications of some applicants simply may not match the needs of host organizations in any given year.