| 29 March 2002
i have long been interested in pursuing opportunities that embrace urbanism. having recently finished my M.Arch at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, i feel that i have entered a necessary transitional period from which i hope to engage new and demanding experiences. i continue to focus my energy on socially conscious architecture by helping to realize those projects that directly confront urban crisis. please pardon the brief biography as i feel it may help you to better understand who i am and what i am aspiring to contribute to the architectural and urban design professions.
i was born in Los Angeles, California in april of 1973. as a product of the Los Angeles Unified School District, i attended a community college after graduating in 1991. it was there that my taste for architecture finally went beyond "drafting" and drawing competitions. i had the opportunity to work for the head of the department of architecture and began to understand the process by which our environments are created. my natural thirst for knowledge and challenge then led me to complete my undergraduate education at UC Berkeley. along the way, i collected a minor in structural engineering and a strong desire to seek-out a more integrated design process.
my life immediately preceding MIT was grounded in the corporate world of architecture. i worked for an architecture firm in San Francisco for almost three years prior to heading east. as a project designer/manager i participated in single and multifamily housing projects from their earliest conception through to the final walk-through. i was entrenched in a world running rampant with speculative building disorder in the heart of the financial district. the experience, however, was quite telling of future obstacles that we will all face. my professional work in San Francisco was invaluable and strengthened my interest in a more real and social, yet integrated approach to the built environment and its reluctant inhabitants.
as a master of architecture student at MIT, i continued to propel myself through the life experiences of an aspiring designer. my third semester design studio led me to Japan where the global crises of continuity and transformation were witnessed and studied first hand. summer 2000 found me behind the lines at Arup Research & Development in london. it was there that i developed an appreciation for the mortality of our endeavors. four of my five semesters at MIT were also spent as a teaching assistant for a structural morphology workshop, undergraduate design studio and building structures 1 & 2. i have recently finished a term as teaching assistant for the urban transformations workshop. the work was a continuation of interests developed during my thesis semester and addressed impending urban issues in this country that relate to density, adaptation, and urban growth.
the opportunity to continue this journey is exciting beyond all expectations. my intent wherever i may follow is simply to contribute to our society as much as i absorb. i sincerely hope that my wish will be realized.
thanks for letting me share this with you. your time and consideration are greatly appreciated.
Mark D. Jewell