Contributed by:
Chiara Bonsignori
Assoc. AIA

Talk About It

About 8 years ago: Vince T.

It was a great experience inspiring girls to dream big.
Opening doors for them to see what the architecture world like is I hope someone could have done the same to me when I was young. I am grateful to be part of Women in Architecture. Thanks Cherie for chairing this event!

Expanding Your Horizons with WiA

WiA volunteers inspire young students to pursue a career in architecture.

Once again the AIA Dallas Women in Architecture Network volunteered at the Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) event at Cedar Valley College in Lancaster. EYH is an annual conference organized to help middle school girls in our community learning more about careers in architecture and other fields related to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The workshop is a great opportunity as the STEM professionals can offer inspiration and motivate girls to pursue careers as innovative and creative thinkers.

The workshop began with a presentation entitled “Why We Love Architecture.” Compelling images supported volunteers Vince Tam of JHP Architecture, and Cherie Mathew, Kiyomi Kumazawa, April Jiang, and Chiara Bonsignori of Corgan Associates in explaining some of the different facets of the architectural professions. From landscape to interiors, from hand sketching to 3D printing, the girls were exposed to the variety of aspects that this career path embodies. The presentation was followed by an animated video of the new Parkland Hospital project and by an animated rendering of a “dream house.”

In the second part of the workshop, everyone sat around the table with markers and glue to create “dream houses.” This was an extremely fun and engaging activity as it further stimulated students’ creativity and curiosity toward design and architecture. Our hope as volunteers is that EYH had a positive impact on the future of these young students. For us, it was extremely gratifying, especially when at the end of the workshop we asked: “Who wants to become an architect?” and everyone raised their hands!

WiA would like to thank Cherie Mathew for organizing and coordinating this year’s successful event. Thank you also to all the other volunteers who helped to prepare all the materials:

Marie Pistor | Corgan Associates

Paula Neal | Corgan Associates

Suhua Zhao | Corgan Associates

Dana Wellman | Corgan Associates

Brian DeGrevalle | Corgan Associates

View more photos from the event here.