Five hours before the AIA Denver Annual Meeting, Kevin asked me ‘What kind of event is this? What should I wear? What do I need to do?’
Me – “It’s a networking opportunity and general meeting of the AIA Denver chapter. Each committee of the chapter talks about what they have done this year and what initiatives have been funded (a.k.a. money spent). Dress business casual, lots of architects, principals, and who’s-who of the architecture community. I need you to smile, be yourself and meet people. Sound good?”
Kevin – “Sounds great.”
Recently we bloggers of the AIA Colorado EP Blog attended the AIA Denver’s Annual Membership Meeting. We went not only because 4 out of 6 of us are AIA Denver members (the other 2 are AIAS) but because we wanted to emerge from behind our writing and meet our readers and hopefully attract a few new readers. We had some fun too.
This was a great opportunity for us to interact with the architecture community face-to-face. So just as we like to ask questions of our readers in our posts, we poised a question to the crowd:
What unique strengths have you seen in today’s Emerging Professionals?
Answers were returned to us on cocktail napkins, most featuring that crisp-yet-artsy architect hand script. Below are some of the responses:
- ‘Great Passion!!’
- ‘Energetic Idealism’
- ‘True collaboration, Comraderie, Support!’
- ‘Excitement at doing something BIG.’
- ‘3D Modeling/Rendering. Courage to design neat stuff with no knowledge of construction or reality. Sustainable commitment.’
- ‘Emerging Professionals have good computer skills, environmental sensibilities and a fresh view of architecture. I wish I could hire some of you.’
- ‘I admire the dedication…even when seasoned architects tell you to ‘Run!’ or ‘Find another profession.’’
- ‘In spite of the rotten economy I see young architects with energy and motivation!’
This question was us looking for acknowledgement of what Emerging Professionals bring to the proverbial table and I feel this was a good little sample of the perception of our demographic. It also felt good to know my fellow contributors and I have written about these very strengths that the crowd recognized.
This blog started with the desire to connect with other emerging professionals and constructively discuss the changes we face. The great part is that in ten months I’ve realized this blog has evolved into something bigger and, dare I say, more enlightening. Yes, each contributor writes about their own challenges and what they’ve learned from them but the writing collection has now become a window into how young architects and soon-to-be architects see the world. The questions we ask, the pictures we take, the stories we tell – all illuminate the perspective of today’s emerging professional.