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Touring historical museums, monuments or structures was never a shoulder drooping, heal dragging excursion for me; rather, I would spend the entire outing seemingly staring off into space at the visual delights and spiritual energy of what my senses perceived. This attraction to aesthetic pleasure was primarily seen in my ability to compose contending or winning art pieces during my elementary and junior schooling years. In time, I began indulging in complimentary historical facts and soon my knowledge and interest of societal history and art began to flourish and I let my imagination drift into the stories that remain quiet whispers in the relics and stone of time past.
This fascination and spiritual connection to the timeless trials and trails of our ancestral societies, particularly how human views and emotions of surroundings are translated through all forms of art, has kept me inspired in these first twenty years and has been a driving factor in my interest in the Taubman School of Architecture. I consider Architecture an encompassing representation of the unique harmony between nature, science and culture: a theme I hope to explore throughout my career. I believe that the unique individuals’ creativity, fresh ideas, and attention to the aesthetic tendencies of self and others are the foundations of tradition. It has been a long term aspiration of mine to embrace my creative abilities and translate my cultural perspectives into a celebration of the old and new. From my experiences, I maintain a firm respect for the underlying and powerful impact that our surroundings have on our disposition.
Many paths, past and present, have contributed to my pursuit of entering into the School of Architecture. The first ten years of my life were spent in South Africa, a beautiful country that shaped my adolescent perspective. I was born and raised along the named ‘Dolphin Coast’ (east) of South Africa and my childhood knew only that cuts and scrapes from exploring outdoors were infinitely superior to bloodshot eyes from beating video games, and that thatch roof huts really do make one feel that much closer to the outdoors, especially when finding a friendly spider on the floor. The transition from Kwa-Zulu Natal to the United States has given me the opportunity to ponder the differences and similarities found in culture and discover for myself a definition of what I view as a balance perspective between organic and custom influences.
More recently, my experience at the University of Michigan has been a contributing inspiration for my personal goals and has reinforced my love and aptitude for artistic expression. I have spent the first two and a half years enrolled at this institution, submerged in the astute mindset of the College of Engineering, pursuing a career in Aerospace Engineering. With the hopes of impacting everyday lives, I fantasized about design opportunities that would provide an outlet for my imagination, but soon found myself frustratingly boxed in a world where I found few opportunities for hands-on excitement and my personal satisfaction. In those five semesters, I have developed my problem solving skills, far past any expectation I held entering this university, and have covered various application based subjects including static structure analysis, basic thermodynamics, multivariable calculus, and motion dynamics. My time spent in the College of Engineering has aided me with priceless abilities to face, analyze and think about complex ideas in a problem solving, efficient way. I believe that this technical background will aid me along my career path, as my affinity for math and science will never diminish and the demand for such technical skills in the working world continues to increase.
Apart from the everyday hustle and bustle of the University, time spent in Ann Arbor will reveal a culturally rich and truly inspiring city. From the time capsules captured in ornate, old town houses to the serenity and sublime discovered in the paths of the Nichols Arboretum, I find myself enthused by the hills, filled with wrinkles of culture and the crafted campus buildings, a playground for intellects of the ages. My time spent walking the sidewalks of Ann Arbor has only intensified my attraction to influential design and innovation, and it is here that I can begin to create my own rhythm of design. I have learned to use the strong analytical skills that the University of Michigan’s curriculum teaches to create harmony out of the simple matters I see in everyday life and I continue to explore my connection with the materials and compositions of the world. I believe the School of Architecture provides the launching pad in pursing my personal goals and I am looking forward to the challenges and discoveries encountered on the road to constructed harmony.
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