February 10, 2020 by 2019-2020 Equity & Diversity Task Force, 2019-2020 Sustainability & Resiliency Task Force, 2020-2021 Council of Global Representatives, 2020-2021 Learning & Teaching Culture Advisory Group, 2021-2022 Professional Development Advisory Group

Welcome to Spring Membership Month, AIAS! This year’s theme is Amplify. During #AIASmem20, the national office will be focusing on how WE can AMPLIFY OUR:_______. This semester’s theme is focusing on OUR membership benefits at the national level. Week two is all about Design! 

“Wait Design? I though the AIAS was a leadership organization?” 

Design is one of the pillars of what the AIAS stands for! Our mission is to advance leadership, design, and service among architecture students. As architecture students, design is part of our daily lives, so you might be wondering how the AIAS can add to the massive amounts of design we see in studio and our other classes. Two words: Career Prep. As design students, we might be faced with a challenge to design anything from a chair to a building to entire neighborhoods and cities. So why can’t we learn to design our careers? 

“Designing your career seems like an interesting concept, Adam. But it also seems a little vague. Can you elaborate?” 

Absolutely! As you go through school, you choose to take certain electives or certain studio professors. Go ahead and apply that principle to the professional realm. Don’t you choose what type of firm to work for or the type of people you want to work with? It can seem like a daunting task since there are so many steps between school and earning your architecture license. Creating a portfolio, landing an interview, deciding which city you would like to work in, deciding the size of the firm, etc. The AIAS has a plethora of tools that can help you in your decision making process. We’ve got the I Want to Work In Series. #iwtwi is a career feature on social media that gives our members the opportunity to hear from a recent graduate about the place they live and work! In addition to #iwtwi, we also host THRIVE, a day-long series of educational sessions for members that will cover tips and tricks for thriving in the profession. From landing your first job and starting on your first project to making meaningful contributions with confidence; this program aims to have relevance to a wide spectrum of undergraduate and graduate students. And did I mention networking opportunities? The AIAS has an entire network of firms that value the mentoring process and desire to inspire—and be inspired by—the next generation of design leaders. They’re called our Design Alliance. You’ll often see many of them at our national conferences like FORUM.

“So is FORUM like a design heavy conference?”

Each year, FORUM is hosted in a different city to give our membership a chance to visit a new place and see some amazing architecture and hear from key designers in the profession. The FORUM planning team puts together tours to amazing architecture in the host city and they bring in local designers to talk about the issues they face on the day to day. Some past examples of places we’ve visited include: Toronto, Nashville, Seattle, and Austin.

“I never knew that AIAS members had access to all these amazing resources!”

Then I bet you didn’t know about our Design Competitions either? The InStudio Competition Series is a chance for our members to win. COLD. HARD. CASH. Have you made a sick rendering or model for a studio recently? Then why don’t you enter it? Each competition is a little different but most of them are as easy to enter as posting a pic on Instagram and using the appropriate hashtags and tagging @aiasorg. Be sure to check out the competitions page on our website to learn about the current and upcoming competition.

Are you ready to Amplify Our: Voice, Ideas, and Actions? Then join the AIAS today and begin designing your future!