Young Architects Forum

Networking and Advising for Emerging Professionals


The Young Architect's Forum (YAF) is a program of the American Institute of Architects and the College of Fellows (COF) and is organized to address issues of particular importance to recently licensed architects, within 10 years after licensure. YAF is an outgrowth of a 1989 AIA Grassroots program. The issues raised and potential benefits visualized at that meeting led to the 1991 formation of a national YAF advisory committee to encourage the development of national and regional programs of interest to young architects and the creation of YAF groups within local chapters.

Events to Foster Your Professional Development

We would love to hear ideas for future YAF events or any questions you may have!

Email us at

Networking + Social Events

Want to get involved? Please feel free to attend any of our upcoming events:

  • YAF Career Fair Social, Friday, March 6th, 5-8pm, Springfield Brewing Company (Free admission, free food/drinks/prizes, No RSVP required)
  • YAF Fall Social, Mother's Brewing Company
  • YAF Scavenger Hunt

Hard Hat Construction Tours

In addition to the mentorship programs, YAF has been sponsoring hard hat tours. The annual AIA tour is completed buildings, and we wanted to show buildings at partial completion to teach students and young architects about construction and building systems. YAF tries to have several events like this throughout the year and we are always looking for suggestions. If you have a project you think would be good for a tour, please contact

YAFSGF Tech Talks

Want to enhance your tech-toolbox?!? Join us for our weekly YAFSGF Tech Talks where David Beach walks us through the newest and most innovation software out there. And sometimes he even brings in guests from Autodesk and Epic Games to talk w/ the group - ! If you've missed our Tech Talks so far, here's some links to what we've covered so far. Watch the AIA Newsletter, YAF Facebook Page and YAF Calendar Invites for information on upcoming sessions. Hope to see you there! If you need to get on the YAFSGF mailing list, please contact

Want to get licensed, but need help?

ARE Study Resources available

Architectural Registration Exam (ARE) Resources are available to all AIA Springfield + YAF Members. If interested, please contact: Mica Moffett, AIA SGF Executive Director

Chen Study Guides, Available for Check-Out

Study Better in a Group?


AIA Springfield wants to proactively support professionals seeking licensure. The task of passing all of the divisions of the ARE can be daunting for young professionals and candidates face many challenges in preparing for and passing the exam:

·       Coping with the high cost of study materials and preparatory seminars.

·       Finding time to study while working.

·       Maintaining the focus and energy required to pass all six divisions in a timely manner.

·       Feeling isolated by the process.

·       Feeling overwhelmed because there is no set structure for the tests.

AIA Springfield believes our ARE Success Teams will help future architects overcome these challenges through a supportive, small group setting. Our goal is to supply free access to study materials, meeting space, administrative support, and subsidized preparatory workshops—providing candidates with the tools and support they need to make the ARE manageable and attainable.


Each ARE Success Team will be composed of three to six Associate members. Team members will commit to taking one division in the month after the 8 week study period. They will also agree to meet once a week during the scheduled time to share tips, exchange information, offer support, and commiserate with colleagues. Each team member will be required to create a schedule, complete assignments, track their progress, and share with the group to keep each other accountable.

AIA Springfield will provide teams with meeting space, access to study materials, and administrative and emotional support. Materials will be available so that participants can “check-out” their own copy of any of the materials available for a given division.


Each participant in the group will pass the ARE and become one step closer to becoming a licensed architect. Everyone in the group will continue to offer support to group members until the end of the 3 month period.


If you are interested in participating in this new “study group program”, please fill out the following questionnaire so that we can appropriately match you with a study group:

For more information or questions about ARE Success Teams please contact Emily Whitty at

Need help with the Architectural Experience Program (AXP)?

If you’re getting ready to start the path to licensure, or need some guidance along the way, please contact Bruce Moore, AIA at for any AXP advice and/or mentorship.

Ready to join?

We’re ready to welcome you! Other than the benefits listed above, and additional ones provided by AIA National, all new AIA members receive FREE registration to the upcoming AIA National Convention.

For up-to-date information, join the YAF e-mail list!

Newly Licensed

Congratulations on becoming licensed! To upgrade your membership from Associate to Professional, please contact Mica Moffett, AIA SGF Executive Director

AIA Emerging Professionals

Refer to the AIA National website for in-depth resources about

  • Continuing Education--track available courses on trending topics and utilize our transcript service
  • Knowledge Communities​--Connect, discuss and share your knowledge in 20+ interest areas
  • Targeted resources in the "Center for Emerging Professionals"--including licensure information, support for architecture students, and information for newly licensed architects
  • Scholarships & Grants--Information on Scholarships, Grants, and Fellowships


Kate Stockton, YAF Chair

Layne Hunton, YAF Co-Chair

Amy Wiley, YAF Adviser

Chelsea McQueen, YAF Advisor

Emily Whitty, YAF Advisor

Caitlin Brooks, YAF Advisor


YAF Program Roles:

YAF Co-Chair

Supports the YAF Chair, first year of 3 year commitment.

YAF Chair

Second year of 3 year commitment.

The Young Architects Forum (YAF) promotes the professional growth and leadership development of Emerging Professionals, including early and mid-career architects and unlicensed professionals on both traditional and non-traditional career paths. The YAF is both a place to connect socially with the design community and a venue to build leadership and advocacy skills.The YAF Director is responsible for addressing issues and discuss topics relevant to young architecture and design professionals in Missouri, working with AIA Missouri, the local chapters, AIAS, and Emerging Professionals to share relevant events.

YAF's mission is to:

  • Encourage professional growth and leadership development among recently licensed architects through interaction and collaboration with AIA and allied groups
  • Build a national network, and serve as a collective voice for young architects by ensuring that issues relevant to young architects are properly addressed by AIA
  • Make AIA membership a valuable tool for young architects and encourage them to pursue leadership roles within the architecture and design community

Thank you to our Sponsors!

Image credits


Lauren Spence