About The AIAPrograms & Initiatives
The “Shadow an Architect” program began at the AIA 2007 National Convention and Design Exposition in San Antonio and was sponsored by the AIA Diversity Committee. During that first year, fifty-five high school and community college students shadowed architect mentors for a day, attending the General Session and touring the Expo floor. The program, held during the 2008 convention in Boston and the 2009 convention in San Francisco, has become an annual event currently sponsored by the AIA Board Diversity Council.
Here’s what a few students had to say about the “Shadow an Architect” program at the 2009 convention:
“I really enjoyed the variety of booths, such as lighting, kitchen, and bath.”
“I liked talking to our mentor, getting some inside feedback on what to do to have a successful career. I also liked looking at some of the green products.”
“I enjoyed following architects going to different booths in the convention. I found out that architects have to consider many issues when designing.”
“I really appreciate the architects letting me follow them today because making time to show and inform students about their career really shows that they support me and my future. “
The “Shadow an Architect” program is a great opportunity for students to see a unique side of the architecture profession and to speak candidly with architects about their experiences pursuing a career in architecture. Below you will find a how-to guide on planning and implementing a similar program at your component, perhaps during your next local or regional conference.
Students and mentors participating in the 2008 "Shadow an Architect" program