Tuesday, August 20, 2013

license to [draw]

now for a post i've delayed writing about for sometime.  i've avoided it for a few reasons, one because of its personal nature and the depth of the information necessary to explain it. secondly because i feel in a some small way, its the end of a huge chapter of this blog.

my [intern] title is now inaccurate; as i am now an officially a licensed architect.

my eleven year journey came to an end last march when i received a letter stating i had passed my seventh and final exam.  i don't believe i've ever worked so hard to achieve a goal in my life, and i wanted to take some time to share my story and thank the numerous people who helped me, without which, i could have never accomplished my goal.

first of all i have to thank my college girlfriend, who was the sole reason i got into architecture.  i was studying engineering when i met a wonderful and beautiful architecture student.  we started dating and i fell in love with everything about her, one of which was what she was studying.  countless nights i would go and visit her in studio and found myself fascinated with what she was designing and building.  after about a year of this, and with her encouragement, i switched majors.  by far one of the best decisions of my life.

the process to switch majors took a year to happen. i applied to get into the college of architecture in the fall of 2001. the following spring, i found out i had been rejected.  never being more sure of what i wanted, i didn't take "no" for an answer and made an appointment to speak with the dean.  i discovered i had been rejected because my grades in engineering were less than stellar.  however he made a deal with me, if i could show an improvement in my grades during the semester, he would "see what he could do."  i worked my ass off that semester, never missing a class and attending every study session.  i ended the semester with 4 A's and a B.  having those grades to show my motivation that summer i received a letter stating he had found a spot for me in the 2nd year studio.

i entered architecture school in the fall of 2002, not knowing a thing.  i want to thank everyone i met during that first studio who helped me out and answered my numerous questions. not surprisingly most of whom are now some of my best friends. i couldn't have made it through that first semester without them, and i will be eternally grateful for that.

the years went by and our class became a close knit group of friends.  we held parities, went on road trips, played practical jokes, drank at bars, studied for tests, pulled all-nighters, passed quizzes, and rocked critiques.  basically created amazing memories that could fill any great college movie.  without a doubt, some of the best years of my life.

i'd like to thank all the wonderful professors i had, especially those who took me under their wing, helping me be more active in school, and eventually taking on the role of mentors.

next, i'd like to thank the architecture firm of hanna gabriel wells, who let me intern for them during my fourth year.  they took a chance hiring someone they had never met, but it meant the world to me.  the lessons learned those seven months still echo in my head today.  it was a wonderful time in my life and i can't thank them enough for allowing me to work for them.  the experiences and memories created during that amazing time is what gave birth to this blog back in 2005.

i'd like to thank the employers i've had since graduating.  firms who allowed me to learn and grow as an intern giving me the knowledge necessary to pass my exams.  going along with that, i'd like to thank the  numerous co-workers who became mentors as well.  i've learned something valuable from everyone i've ever worked with.  any moment they've taken out of their lives to explain something to me in extra detail really was a gift i'm thankful for.

i also need to thank those individuals who gave me a job when i was unemployed.  jered, eric and lauren gave me a chance to keep the passion of architecture flowing by giving me construction jobs helping with their design/build firms.  the kindness they shared during a very chaotic time in my life was priceless.

i'd also like to thank fellow interns who have become friends these last four years. knowing other people are also going through the same challenges as you and hearing them concur them is amazing motivation.

finally, i'd like to thank all my friends and family who have been their for me, and dealt with me over the years.  whether is was being cranky after an all nighter or being extremely tired because i've been studying for a test, thank you for putting up with me.

it's a weird feeling finishing a goal you've spent the last eleven years trying to accomplish.  i have this sense of "what do i do now?" there are numerous things to go after, but which one?  it's a crazy world out there, but i'm sure something will present itself and allow me to once again pour my heart into achieving it.  which in a way brings me back to the title of this blog [intern] life.  a title i believe i will keep.

i'm learning it doesn't matter how old i get or what i achieve...life is about learning...and getting paid with experience.

1 comment:

Nicole said...

Eric, this is such a wonderful retrospect! Huge congrats! I know our class was better for having you in it, as well. Thanks for always providing your perspective.