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UTSA College of Architecture launches career-prep series

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(Jan. 30, 2013) -- In an effort to help prospective graduates fully prepare to enter an ever-changing and competitive job market, the UTSA College of Architecture (COA) has modified the traditional, one-day career fair model to present a new initiative, a Symposium on Professional Practice. The symposium will include a series of interactive panels where invited speakers from the professional community will deliver informational sessions, share industry insights and engage in open dialogue with students.

The series kicked off Monday, Jan. 28 with the first session, Getting Started: Diversity of Practices and Offices, at the UTSA Downtown Campus. The panel was moderated by San Antonio architect Richard Mogas and included Mary Ann Mitchell of O'Connell Robertson, Michael Rey of Overland Partners Architects and UTSA alumnus Derrik Godwin '08 of Michael Imbimbo Architects.

Before the recession, the COA offered traditional career fairs each spring as a way to allow prospective graduates to network with area employers. The new initiative is an attempt to reclaim the optimism of the career fairs in years past, while realistically enabling UTSA graduates to plan for their professional destinies in more strategic, informed ways.

A series of three panel sessions, paired with a one-day shadowing event, will be held over the course of four months during the spring 2013 semester. Each session will be composed of three panelists from San Antonio's architecture community and moderated by a recognized architectural practice leader who will pose ideas and field questions from the audience. On the shadow day, each architecture graduate student will be paired with a design professional to gain insight into the daily routine of office productivity, studio formations and workplace relationships. A variety of office environments, firm sizes and emphases of practice will be represented in both the panel sessions and the shadow day.

Examples of the important topics to be discussed in the sessions are portfolio creation, the process of pursuing jobs, how firms evaluate potential employees, interview strategies, how the workplace has changed in recent years and what recent graduates should know in order to succeed during their formative first years of practice. See the schedule below for complete details.

The Symposium on Professional Practice was born out of discussions by the COA dean's advisory council, which formed a subcommittee to fully realize the idea. Led by Greg Papay, partner at Lake/Flato Architects and chair of the dean's advisory council, and faculty member Rick Lewis, the subcommittee asked local design professionals and firms for their support in the endeavor, many of whom offering to volunteer as panelists or shadow hosts. In addition to reinforcing the launch of graduates into the profession, all involved hope to foster a more productive, innovative and enduring building industry workforce in years to come.

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For more information, contact Nicole Chavez at 210-458-3121.

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Schedule for the COA Symposium on Professional Practice

Getting Started: Diversity of Practices/Offices
Topics: Entering into practice via multiple routes, design career strategies, organization of firms, working in large or small firms, alternative paths of practice
Date: 5:30 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28
Location: Monterey Building Gallery, UTSA Downtown Campus
Welcoming remarks: Alicia Treviño (Principal, DHR Architects), Dean's Advisory Council
Moderator: Richard Mogas (Richard Mogas Architecture)
Panelists: Michael Rey (Architect, Overland Partners Architects), Mary Ann Mitchell (Architect, O'Connell Robertson), Derrik Godwin (UTSA alumnus with wide range of experience, Michael Imbimbo Architects)

Shadow Day: Design Professional Shadowing
Daylong event. Approximately 30 architecture graduate students will be paired with a practitioner. Later that evening, the COA will host a social hour allowing for informal discussions between students and practitioners to compare experiences. 
Date: Friday, Feb. 1
Welcoming Remarks: Lloyd Jary (President, Lloyd Walker Jary and Associates), Dean's Advisory Council

Getting Down to Business: Job Search, Interviews and Portfolios
Topics: Approaches to seeking a job, preparing for the interview and types to anticipate, putting together the portfolio in a variety of ways/platforms
Date: 5:30 p.m., Monday, March 4
Location: Monterey Building Gallery, UTSA Downtown Campus
Welcoming Remarks: Boone Powell (Principal, Ford Powell and Carson), Dean's Advisory Council
Moderator: Mike McGlone (Principal, Alamo Architects)
Panelists: Matt Wallace (Architect, Lake/Flato Architects)

Being Successful: Individually and as a Team Member
The panel will address achieving individual success and gratification in practice and how to set goals for achieving such success. Emphasis will be the first two or three years of work.
Topics: the collective success of firms; creating a good workplace; landing work; cultivating new and desirable clients
Date: 5:30 p.m., Monday, April 8
Location: Monterey Building Gallery, UTSA Downtown Campus
Welcoming Remarks: Greg Papay (Partner, Lake/Flato Architects), Dean's Advisory Council
Moderator: TBA
Panelists: TBA

 

 

Did You Know?

For acclaimed UTSA writer, poetry rhymes with life

Robert Penn Warren said: “How do poems grow? They grow out of your life.” That is certainly true for Carmen Tafolla. An associate professor of practice with the UTSA College of Education and Human Development, Tafolla has authored more than 20 acclaimed books of poetry and prose, including "The Holy Tortilla and a Pot of Beans." It won the Tom´s Rivera Children’s Book Award in 2009.

Tafolla is a San Antonio native who grew up on the West Side. Attending a private high school, she realized that the literature did not positively portray her community or the people who lived there. She determined to change that in her writing. In published works for both adults and children — more than 200 anthologies, magazines, journals, textbooks and readers in four languages — Tafolla reflects on the rich Mexican-American culture of San Antonio in which she grew up.

Did you know? Tafolla was San Antonio's first Poet Laureate, from 2012 to 2014, and currently serves as the Poet Laureate of Texas.

Read More »
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Free Teacher Tuesday: Los Tejanos Workshop

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Aug. 6, 5 - 7 p.m.; 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

6th Annual Texas Higher Education Symposium

This annual symposium is an opportunity to discuss Texas higher education issues and trends with Texas higher education scholars, state and local government officials, students, and campus and local community members.
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Aug. 9, 12 - 5 p.m.

Vaquerocation 2015

This cowboy-themed programming, offered in conjunction with Our Kids Magazine's Kidcation Week, gives families the opportunity to visit with cowboy docents, enjoy readings and visit activity tables.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.

Aug. 17, 11:30 p.m.

Midnight Light

Join President Ricardo Romo, The Spirit of San Antonio Marching Band, students, faculty and staff to light the monument at the Main Campus entrance at the stroke of midnight.
John Peace Boulevard Entrance, Main Campus

Aug. 18, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

President's BBQ on the Plaza

Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Bill Miller Plaza for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Bill Miller Plaza, Downtown Campus

Aug. 18, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

President's BBQ on the Lawn

Join university President Ricardo Romo on the Convocation Center lawn for his annual free BBQ lunch.
Convocation Center East Lawn, Main Campus

Aug. 22, 6 p.m.

UTSA Alumni Gala

The UTSA Alumni Association hosts this annual gala honoring the Alumna of the Year, Alumnus of the Year and the Alumnus of the Year Lifetime Achievement award winners.
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa, 9800 Hyatt Resort Dr.


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