Next Gen Leaders
Profiles of the Industry’s New Generation
Current Employer: Corgan / NYC
Position / Job Title: Project Specialist
College or University Attended: University of Buffalo
Degree(s): B.S. and Master’s Degree in Architecture:
Accomplishments: Winning CIC-Louis G. Nappi and Construction Advancement Institute Scholarships – 2017-2020
Favorite Course or Subject: I took a course called Logging as a graduate where the main objective was to develop an understanding of forestry and the labor involved in the first steps of making the lumber we so widely use. The course also ended with working with foresters to fell a tree, haul it out of the woods and process it on a mill to usable pieces. The entire process gave me a profound appreciation for the material and how much we overlook when we think about what we build with.
Why this professional choice? While it feels like going into architecture naturally came to me on its own, it was really the fact that I had many mentors and influences in my family and school that worked in the AEC industry who were guides to help me find it.
What, if any are the biggest challenges in your work? In my firm, I work in the aviation studio so the biggest hurdle for me was dealing with the scale of the projects I am working on. Airport terminals have so many functions and moving parts they are almost small cities. Getting a grasp on the whole picture was and continues to be a challenge to understand how the system works together.
What if any were the biggest surprises when you entered the field? For as many people who work in the AEC industry, it’s actually an incredibly small world.
Most memorable quote: My favorite quote is by Louis Khan: “Even a brick wants to be something.” I like it because it’s a reminder that even something mundane and perceived as insignificant in a project still wants to be cared for and designed right.
Any words of wisdom for a young person entering the field? When you get into practice you get the idea that you don’t know a lot and it turns out you actually know less than that, but that’s fine. Stay curious, rigorous and passionate and things will start making sense.
Greatest accomplishment so far or goals you’ve set: My biggest goal is earning my architecture license.
Favorite interests or hobbies: Cycling has quickly become a big part of my free time, weather permitting.
Family relationship to CIC and Nappi Scholarship: My uncle works for Yonkers Contracting Co., and is a member of Teamsters Local 456.
—Alan Kennedy, Researcher and Writer