TLCD recently continued our tradition of participating in the Mike Hauser Academy (MHA) which is a STEM “summer camp” sponsored by the Santa Rosa Metro Chamber. The two week program provides incoming 9th grade English Language Learner (ELL) students, and students who could benefit from extra math and science support, the opportunity to interact with STEM related companies and ask questions about what careers in these fields are actually like.
We were excited to be back with the students in person for this summer program after participating in a hybrid format (some in person and some online) in 2021. Working with the students in the classroom and having them engaged in several group activities allowed us to show them what the field of architecture is about.
This year’s course was held at Santa Rosa Middle School with a group of 14 wonderful students and the equally wonderful Lila Henderson, a teacher at Santa Rosa High School. Our two-day program included a broad overview of architecture as well as what TLCD does specifically. We got a lot of great questions as diverse as what education paths are needed to pursue architecture and what is involved in starting your own architecture firm. There were some thinkers in this group!
On day one we led the students through some exercises to learn about drawing to scale to understand how we get our large buildings to fit on a small piece of paper and to grasp how things relate to each other in space. On day two the students worked in groups of three, forming their own “design firm” to design and build a scale model of their ideal hangout space. There were some really creative ideas for gaming areas, indoor pools, and even a rooftop soccer field. We ended with each firm presenting their ideas to the class and fielding questions about their design. Ms. Henderson even curated a design competition for the students to vote anonymously for their favorite designs.
We really appreciate the enthusiasm of the students and the collaboration with Ms. Henderson in making this a great installment in TLCD’s legacy of working with MHA. We can’t wait until next year!