Last week, Sasaki welcomed students from Boston Public Schools' Brighton High School to spend a day exploring career opportunities in the design field. We are committed to outreach programs such as this, as they play a critical role in growing and diversifying the design profession. The students started their day with an ice breaker exercise to shift perceptions of architecture and design as more than simply a means to housing people, but as a crucial tool for creating experiences and making change.
The students also toured Sasaki’s campus and got hands-on tutorials of how a design firm works, thinks, and creates. The young designers tested out some virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) tools being deployed in the field today; learned about the importance of brand cohesion and communications in presenting the firm’s work; were intrigued and captivated by the use of data visualization in our projects; learned about designing landscapes with flooding in mind to avoid damage and help design for resiliency; and had to the chance to see the conception, investigation, and implementation of a completed fabrication project in our Fab Lab.
The students then took their newly acquired ideas and spent some time creating their own personal learning space, imagining a place where they can focus, study, and prepare themselves for doing their best work. Their ideas were lofty, exciting, and incredibly inspiring. One student focused on a self-sustaining design complete with renewable energy and urban agriculture, while another student pushed for a space with strategically located openings for access to natural light for stimulation, and a darker, cozier settings for increasing focus.
They ended their day with one-on-one interviews with Sasaki designers to talk about how best to pursue a career in design. They asked questions about opportunities in the field, educational programs at local universities and colleges, and advice on the obstacles they might face and the rewards of overcoming them.
Sasaki would like to extend a big thank you to the Boston Society of Architects (BSA) for developing this important and necessary program, and to Boston's Private Industry Council for partnering with young students and helping to inspire the next generation of designers. Lastly, we are grateful to the nearly 20 professionals who volunteered their time to engage with this group of future designers.