Monday, January 11, 2010

Return to the SoA

col-lab-o-rate: 1. To work together, especially in a joint intellectual effort.

We are back, well-slept, and hopefully ready for a new semester here at the SoA. Convocation Part II got us all thinking about our purpose as designers with a lecture on inventive architecture that was made possible through creative collaboration. 

All of us students were packed tightly in Room 110 as we were told how important it is for architects to work together in order to build ideas, learn consistently, and actually get things done and done well. We were all encouraged to take on challenges with an innovative attitude, and for a beginning of semester lecture, it was exactly what we all needed to hear. 

We are still learning what it is to be an architect, a design student, and a team player. We are constantly gaining new knowledge about space, form, materials, and representation. Our minds are always investigating and we should hope this never ceases. 

Architects, creative thinkers, philosophers, writers, artists... we all work as a team within this school. This semester I hope each of us take advantage of our professors and our peers and begin to collaborate daily about everything from program arrangement to representing north on our final drawings. 

We have an amazing studio culture and we should absolutely make the most of it. 

So roll out the trace, empty those prisma markers, and bug your neighbors for design feedback as often as possible. 

Welcome back everyone! I wish you all a creative semester.

Cherish Rosas

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wondering when one of those so called "amazing AIAS trips" is going to happen?

Good. I bring forth great news.

South Quad 2009 is coming October 22nd - 24th, held in Savannah, Georgia, and hosted by SCAD.

Theme: Making and Breaking the Grid.

What is South Quad? Awesome. That's what.

But for you "details" people I will elaborate.

South Quad is an annual AIAS event, each hosted by a different architecture/design college, that brings together architecture students to focus on local, regional and national issues involving architecture and design. Its a chance to connect with other students from different cities and regions and also lets you discover a city that perhaps you've never visited before.

These quad conferences also introduce you to quite a few familiar and unfamiliar faces of the professional world.;

SCAD has invited Daniel Snyder, a local Savannah architect, at Ted Landsmark, President of Boston Architectural College, at; and Michael Rotundi, principal at RoTo Architects and founding partner of Morphosis, at

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity you don't want to miss!

There will also be social events, a design charrette competition, various service projects, Historic District and SCAD Walking Tours, Firm Crawl (including Cowart Coleman Group and Dalu Design Group), Ghost Tour, and plenty of free time to do what you wish.

We will be staying at SpringHill Suites by Marriott located in Historic District/Downtown. $129 per night. AIAS will be working to help fund this cost.

Registration is now open at for October 22-24.
AIAS members: $45.00
Non-members: $55.00

Friday studio will be missed but absence should be excused (check with your professors).

Again, this is a fantastic opportunity for architecture students both academically and socially. You don't have to be a member of AIAS to go but it would give you a sweet discount. *hint* *nudge* *wink*.

So if you have any questions you can visit or ask any AIAS officer for information.

Come to this week's AIAS meeting on Friday, October 2, 5:45 in the gallery downstairs.

Hope to see you all there!



Monday, September 14, 2009

You Know You Want To...

Breaking news: it appears that a large majority of SoA students are indecisive about becoming a 2009-2010 member of the AIAS! Why? We asked the same question....

"I don't know what the AIAS is about" - said an anonymous first year who allegedly did not attend the first informative AIAS meeting of the year. 

"It seems like a lot of money to not know what I'm paying for." - said one SoA student on a budget. 

Just two of the many concerns among the busy SoA population, we know a lot of students have reason to be unsure. But we are here to ease your worries. 

Why should you join the AIAS? It's simple. "It's not what you know, it's who you know. But really it's who knows you." said a speaker from 2009 Grassroots. 

In our competitive profession, connections with anyone and everyone is extremely vital. You never know if the next architect you hear speak, student you befriend, or mentor you work with might lead to a job opportunity or career changing experience. It's important for you to participate and interact with your peers in studio, but its extremely beneficial to interact with the professional realm as early as you can. AIAS provides these opportunities. 

But this isn't all AIAS is about. It's a community within a community. We participate in recreational events like Kickball, fun competitions such as the cardboard boat race, t-shirt design, or the national cardboard chair design, and amazing forums including this year's South Quad in Savannah, Georgia and Winter Forum in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 

"I belong to the AIAS because of the unforgettable trips we take. I met so many amazing students from other architecture schools."

"I belong to the AIAS because I'll get to join the AIA for one free year when I graduate." 

"I belong to the AIAS because of the voice it has in our profession. It's incredible how influential it is."

Those are just a few reasons that some members have joined and continue to be apart of this organization. The AIAS is so much more than any sort of student government organization, its a movement that is molding our generation of architects with our own voices. 

We guarantee that if you join, participate, and take advantage of the opportunities provided, that AIAS will become an organization that is just as significant as your architectural education. 

So let's make sure that this year is one of the best years for AIAS. 

If you have any questions find an officer near you! Remember, membership forms are due September 25th, 2009 and are to be turned in to any officer (must be turned in with check). 

Post Scriptum: Kickball tournament is coming soon. We'll keep you posted on the official date so check the site!


Cherish Rosas

Monday, August 31, 2009

Back To Storrs...

This year began last Tuesday with the usual hustle and bustle of students rushing to their new classes and taking their seats near familiar faces they missed over the long three months of summer vacation. Professors wasted no time handing out their assignments and lists of expectations, while students of the SoA began settling in to their new, cozy studio bays (or watercolor classrooms). Our plates were immediately full of projects and to-do-lists, and we almost didn't notice the newest litter of students roaming the halls looking lost, intimidated, and confused.

Why, hello first years....

Welcome to the SoA! You have just completed your first week of the rest of your creative lives and the roller coaster is just beginning. You've met a few nice people, made acquaintences with your equally terrified neighbor, and perhaps have learned which professors do not wish to be acknowledged by their last names. Your pristine borco is littered with 4x6 nonsense, that right now, means very little to you, but just give it time... this school gets weirder.

Right now you're a stranger in a foreign land where people speak in datum, hierarchy, and fibonacci. But there are ways for you to quickly become a much more comfortable sleepless zombie in this world of strange faces.

If you attended the free BBQ luncheon on Friday (I don't know why you would turn down free meat), then you might have stayed long enough to meet this years 2009-2010 AIAS Board. Perhaps a small question such as "who are these happy people?" crossed your mind or maybe "why are there so many vowels in the name of their organization?".

Well I encourage you all to bring those questions to our first AIAS meeting of this year, Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009 at 5:30 in the gallery (the room with the sweet paintings in it next to the office). In the meantime, enjoy your lack of sleep and consistent confusion.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Studio Culture Policy

A studio culture policy is an agreement negotiated between students, faculty and staff in an effort to create a positive learning environment. The intention is that through these guidelines a culture of respect, optimism, sharing and innovation will emerge; one in which faculty are mindful of the environment they create. Promoting a healthy studio environment is paramount to fostering designers who are socially responsible, confident, and engaged in the profession.

In addition to affecting the learning environment and experience for students, the studio culture policy is also a condition for NAAB accreditation. Although the policy will be a living document that is always open to debate and revision, submitting a carefully considered and thorough draft to NAAB is very important to our accreditation review which will be taking place this spring. Please download the pdf or refer to the handout you received during convocation and post any comments or concerns you have on this blog entry. If you have any questions please email the AIAS at

Sunday, June 28, 2009

CNN on Rem Koolhaas

Very interesting interview with Rem Koolhaas. It's actually
the first in a series of three interviews in which he discusses
the complex nature of architecture and the effects that
complexity has had on some of his projects. You can watch
the second and third videos at and comment
here on the blog.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Let's chat, shall we?

We've all been there… it's 3 o'clock in the morning, stressed out and fed up you just have to get something off your chest. It could be anything. Maybe you haven't been getting constructive feedback on your project. Maybe there is a new policy you don't agree with, or maybe they just haven't been stocking your favorite candy bar in the vending machine (if that last one pushes you over the edge, might be time to go home and get some sleep). A brief exclamation resonates through the studios and strikes a chord with a few of your fellow classmates. Suddenly, what started as a sarcastic outburst to relieve some stress evolves into a 30 minute free-for-all rant. While these late night gripe sessions are usually more one-liners and exaggerations than constructive criticism, they often do make a good point.

That's what this post is for; those random things that have nothing to do with anything but are important nonetheless. Whenever you have a topic that you think people ought to talk about, a question that has been troubling you, or an idea that you need help with, this blog is always available. Anytime, day or night. For all the things that don't pertain to another specific post, put it here. And for the things that don't necessarily concern the general student population, you can always email AIAS directly.