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SCI-Arc Student Profile: Corie Yaguchi

Sci-Arc student Corie Yaguchi Portrait
Corie Yaguchi

Corie Yaguchi recently completed her third year of the undergraduate program at SCI-Arc. She was born and raised in Los Angeles, California and studied engineering at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo before eventually changing her major to architecture. In fall of 2017, she transferred to the B.Arch program at SCI-Arc for her second year. She is now an intern for Current Interests, a collaborative project co-founded by SCI-Arc Design Faculty Mira Henry and Matthew Au.

How has studying architecture impacted how you view the world?
Architecture has made me think more about all of the work and thought and ideas that go into the things in the world that we typically take for granted. Before, I never would have thought about what goes into creating a design for a building or an iPhone or even a toothbrush, but after studying architecture I’ve realized that people really devote themselves to these things and that they don’t just appear out of nowhere. It has also made me think a little bit more about the things that are happening around me, whether it be what’s in the news or pop culture or something that I am reading about, and how those things all have influence over me and my work and my interests.

Which living architect do you most admire, and what is the quality you most admire about them?
I have a hard time picking only one architect, but in general, I tend to admire architects who are relentlessly themselves and unapologetically stand behind their ideas. I think that is a hard thing to do and it is something that I hope to continue to move towards as a designer.

If you were to die and return as a building, which would it be?
Buildings aren’t living things so I would rather come back as a giraffe, but if I had to choose I would be the Eames House – good view of the ocean and lots of character on the inside.

Which historical figure do you most identify with?
This question was hard for me, but I think right now I am trying to identify with women like Frida Kahlo or Oprah; not in terms of talent or success, but in being a woman of color working in a male-dominated field.

3d printed model
Corie Yaguchi, 2018

What is your most treasured possession in your workspace?
I think that my most treasured possession would either be my headphones or my box of snacks. Working would be impossible without either of those things.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue, both personally and in architecture? The most underrated?
I think that one of the most overrated virtues in architecture is the desire/need to overwork. It has become a part of the culture of architecture, both academically and professionally, to work until really early in the morning and get very little sleep, and I do not believe that it is necessary or a good strategy to create more meaningful work. Continuing from that, I think that taking care of yourself and especially your mental health is a virtue that is extremely underrated, and also extremely important.

Which talent would you most like to possess?
I really wish that I had some form of musical talent. I think it would make life more fun.

How has your experience as an architecture student influenced your taste in music, and what is your current studio soundtrack?
As an architecture student, I am in the studio for such long hours and listen to so much music during that time, that I feel my music taste has really expanded beyond what it used to be. My studio soundtrack is always a weird mix of so many different things.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
I overuse the phrase “the other day” too much when trying to tell stories to people. To me “the other day” could be two days ago or it could be when I was 12. I also overuse the phrase “blah blah blah” because I use it when I am unsure of how to actually end my sentence.

What are you most proud of?
I think I am most proud of finally deciding what field I want to work in. For a long time I was all over the place and didn’t know what my interests were, so I am really satisfied with where I am right now.

A brown tile fabrication drwaing showing details
Corie Yaguchi, 2018
a blue and white architectural model of a building
Corie Yaguchi & Andrew Depew, 2018