University of Minnesota - M.Arch '97
What was the most important thing/skill/concept you learned at the School of Architecture?
Problem solving is the most important by far, along with presentation skills, composition, and design. Overall the process for a project was very important- gathering information, discussing the needs and issues for the project, exploring possible solutions, evaluating the feasibility of solutions, finalizing design and presenting the final product.
Who made the most lasting impression (most influenced you) and why?
My favorite studios were with Lee Tollifson and Janis Ladouceur. Lee had such a great planning process for us and our two quarter studio. Janis pushed me and challenged me the most to find design alternatives. Both were later thesis advisers and were always very connected with my projects. I also liked Bill Morish's urban design class which was great for diagramming the site issues and forces.
What is your favorite memory from your studio days?
Our projects that got us to work as a group were great. Rather than hide away and do your own project, we actually collaborated and did better than any of us could have done alone. And then there were the squirrels living in the studio with us. They were crazy- most had lost half their hair from eating pipe and duct insulation. Sometimes you would find one living in your architectural models.
Please identify one (or more) memorable design project that you worked on while a student at the School of Architecture.
It was great to work on the Alumni Center for the University years before Predock did the project. We studied all the gateways into campus and worked out the program details for the center. It was interesting to see the final project on the site after evaluating ten other projects that were proposed on that very same site.
What major forces (such as individual architects, design philosophies, rendering styles, research methods, etc.) do you remember influencing you significantly as a student?
I was in the School of Architecture just as everything switched from paper to CAD. It was incredible to experiment on Photoshop at school and bring those skills to the office I worked at through school. We had a couple 3D programs, but they were so boxy and flat. Those experiments and early programs transformed the design and presentations over the past two decades to the 3D, photo-realistic designs of today.
Cite an example (be specific) that illustrates how you used the education you received at the School of Architecture to positively impact (or better) your community, city, nation or the world.
I have worked with numerous non-profits and community groups with architectural and space needs projects. I also advocate for sustainable living and design with local community and youth groups.