Inside SCI-Arc

Melissa L.

B.Arch (Sept 2018)
Hometown: Lakewood, CA

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What is it about architecture that drives you?
Being born in a family of artists, I practiced art from a young age. As a freshman in B.Arch, I discovered that Architecture isn’t just designing buildings and constructing, but it also involves a wide variety of art, such as visualizing, drawing, modeling, photographing, etc. I am extremely fortunate to be able to train in a broad major that will help me make a meaningful impact in the world.

Why did you choose to attend SCI-Arc?
The fact that SCI-Arc is among the top architecture schools in the nation played a big part in my selection. From the moment I walked through the glass entrance of SCI-Arc’s extended structure measuring about the height of the Empire State building, I perceived it to be unique from other architecture schools. Having now experienced my first semester at SCI-Arc, through the intensive practice and training, I know and believe that I have progressed above and beyond what is usually taught to a first-year B.Arch student elsewhere. Every step, every struggle, every critique we have been through, has been beneficial and valuable in a way we would never forget, and which we would carry with us into our architectural career. SCI-Arc trains their students to become professionals and to be fully equipped before entering the competitive world, and that is where I want to be.

What are the strengths of SCI-Arc’s curriculum?
SCI-Arc’s curriculum helps us explore and scrutinize further out of our bounding box from our amateur mindset of ideas, imaginations, and thinking to a professional mindset. Each and every class teaches us a unique way of approaching Architecture in a way that keeps our mind flowing with creativity. There are no limits to being creative, and going above and beyond of what you have. SCI-Arc helps us and urges us to continuously use and improve our theoretical minds.

What are the defining or unique characteristics of SCI-Arc students?
Students at SCI-Arc are dedicated to their passion for Architecture. Each and every individual has his or her own style and ideas. Functioning in an environment where there is no hierarchy, students from other grade levels don’t just come and go, seeing and critiquing the works of others, but they also open up to offer them support and opportunities to experiment with them.

What is your favorite studio experience?
My favorite studio experience at SCI-Arc is getting critiqued and receiving feedback. At the end of every project or exercise, we have a pin up, where we present our work to fellow students and to our instructors. During each and every one of our studio pin ups, it is extremely beneficial to hear what our instructors have to say about what we put forth for that day because whatever is said, it will be carried throughout our whole entire Architectural life. This is an extremely important and powerful experience that students need in order to succeed not only in our practice at SCI-Arc, but also in our future goal of becoming successful architects.

Have you been involved in projects outside of the required coursework?
Before attending SCI-Arc, I had the opportunity to visit City Hall and work on site with my father who is an architect. I visited several construction sites where I had the opportunity to be my father’s assistant and meet with the people involved in the project. I feel like that experience has very much prepared me for architecture school, providing me an opportunity to combine my school work with real-world experience.

What are your plans upon graduation from SCI-Arc? How will your education at SCI-Arc help you achieve your goals in the future? I believe that I will gain many techniques, practices, and skills from the full five years that I will be spending at SCI-Arc. In this increasingly global world, I plan to mesh together everything that I have learned and observed at SCI-Arc, and play my role in the next generation of global architects, designing and building structures around the world.

Carolina M.

"We are the architects of the future and SCI-Arc is the place that guides us to reach our goals as designers."

Joao V.

"The great thing about SCI-Arc is that you are allowed to pursue your individual interests and the instructors guide and help you to develop those ideas."

Lea S.

"SCI-Arc has a phenomenal way of bringing out a high level of creativity in students through a very well thought out structured manner."

Amir M.

"Since I was a small kid, I have always wanted to be an Architect; designing and building always fascinated me. This dream never changed but the meaning of the word did. I see that in Architecture one can never stop growing."