We long to live life well. The internship addresses this deep longing by exploring the big question: How do I live wisely in twenty-first century Aotearoa, New Zealand?
Through life in community, a diverse teaching curriculum, placements, and deep relationships, interns are encouraged to tackle this big question. There is an emphasis on personal formation – developing the maturity to participate effectively with God in serving the world.
A vision for New Zealand
Ultimately, the goal is to foster deep thought, faithful living, and wise service, so that interns can shape Aotearoa, New Zealand for the glory of God.
Throughout the seven-month residential programme, interns are taught and supported by an outstanding and experienced staff team, who have been educated in world-class institutions and have expertise in theology, biblical studies, ethics, education, history, political philosophy, economics, leadership, and community building. Staff are gifted in teaching and mentoring, and relish the relationships they form with interns over the seven months.
Wide input and networking
In addition to a gifted staff team, interns are introduced to other experienced teachers and mentors, including politicians, business leaders, social entrepreneurs, community leaders, and academic experts. Interns also become part of a vibrant and extensive alumni community.
The small classes—of 10 to 12 interns—allow for an approach to learning that acknowledges the importance of curiosity, free enquiry, dialogue and discussion, and creative expression. Learning is vibrant and active. Interns are encouraged to interact with the teaching staff and with one another, in order to understand what they believe and why they believe it.
The interns live together in two beautiful homes in stunning surrounds at Cape Horn in Hillsborough, Auckland. The residence is a rich context to foster personal formation, as interns practice what it means to live out service and respect for each other at close quarters. The houses are also a setting for extended conversations—often over meals—about what interns are learning in the internship. For many interns, life together in the house, and the long-lasting friendships that develop, are a highlight of the programme.
The internship is for young adults (20-30 year olds) who want to deepen their understanding of God, the world, and themselves, and who are committed to faithfully serving God in their homes, workplaces, and local communities.
The application process is competitive. We are looking for interns who have shown commitment to deepening their understanding, who have a capacity for service and leadership, and who have demonstrated academic ability. We encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds, ethnicities, and life experiences, who are committed to living, learning, and growing with others.
Tackling the big question
The teaching curriculum is designed to help interns wrestle with what it means to live a wise life. Interns explore a range of subjects—including theology, history, philosophy, culture, politics and the arts—and are exposed to variety of literature, film, art, music, and field trips. The various elements of the programme, including lectures, group discussions, reading, question and answer times, retreats, journaling, field trips, and written exercises help interns develop their own answer to the big question.
Formation over information
Throughout, the focus of the teaching curriculum is not information, but formation—the formation of wise people who have a deep understanding of God, the world, and themselves, who will faithfully serve in areas such as business, politics, law, education, media, arts, church, family, and the local community.
The four modules, plus the Venn Summer Conference, consider different aspects of what it means to become wise people. The first module begins in mid-November and the last module ends in early July.
Variation and flexibility
The modular approach allows for a good learning pace and flexibility. Some interns are unable to commit to the full programme because of study or other commitments. Those candidates can apply to do Modules I and II only. We strongly encourage applicants to do the full internship, and we give preference to those who apply for the full seven-month programme.
During Module III, each intern spends 10 weeks on a placement working on a project or at an organisation. This provides interns with an opportunity to reflect on their learning from Modules I and II, to develop an area of interest or explore working in a particular field, and to develop their capacity for service. Interns meet weekly with Venn staff during their placements to help them process their experience and learning.
Tailored and integrated
Placements are discussed during the first month of the internship. They are tailored to each person, and we seek to balance personal development with the needs of the organisation where the intern is working. Interns have worked on arts, social enterprise, and research projects and have worked in churches and an extensive range of organisations in public policy, media, business, social enterprise, finance, education, consulting, and community service.
The next programme will run mid-November 2017 to early July 2018.
Applications open 1 June 2017. The application has two stages. The first stage is a written application, the second stage is an interview.
Successful applicants will be notified of their acceptance to the programme in September, 2018. The programme begins 18 November 2017.
The cost per intern is approximately $25,000 for the seven and a half months, and $15,000 for Modules I and II. This includes full tuition, field trips, accommodation, and food. As a charity, all of this cost must be raised from our generous supporters. Thus we invite interns to contribute up to 50% of that cost, seeking donations from friends and family.
The interns live together in two beautiful homes in Cape Horn in Hillsborough, Auckland.
The majority of classes are held at nearby premises, situated within stunning park-like grounds and gardens.
Vocational placements vary based on the location of the placement host – anywhere within the greater Auckland area.
*COST – Our commitment is that finance not be a barrier to attendance and this is why we invite donations, rather than charging fees. Please contact us before allowing lack of funds to discourage you from applying. Please note this contribution structure applies to Australasian applicants only. If you are an international applicant please contact us for cost details.
Keen to apply? The written application form is waiting for you