Since coming back from Cape Verde last winter, my life has changed drastically in ways that I wouldn’t have expected or predicted. For one, I found myself going to grad school in Auburn, Alabama. Auburn is a place so different from Milwaukee, that it might as well be a different country; there is different food, a distinctly different culture, and people lack the ability to drink at all. Despite this I have found that I have enjoyed the much warmer climate, great people, and real world projects that I have gotten involved with down here. They have helped me to realize that while I enjoy living in the Midwest, it isn’t the place that I enjoy so much as the great people and opportunities that it provided.
Of the many opportunities that my stay in Auburn provided, the one that I have enjoyed the most down here has been working with people from different backgrounds, occupations, and areas of the country. It has allowed me the opportunity to see how different people think, work, and approach life. Below is as an example from one of the latest projects that I worked on. In this project, we attempted to reuse an old industrial building, transforming it from an eyesore into a cultural hub, and Industrial Art Center for the City of Chattanooga, TN. Due to the multiple disciplines that were involved we were able to produce a building that not only fit in with the budget and schedule that the city desired, but also the aesthetic and narrative quality that the city wanted to pursue.
As I wrap up my stay in Auburn, I hope that these opportunities continue to allow me to experience something different than the life that I had gotten used to back in the Midwest. I feel that, just like in Cape Verde, these experiences have allowed me to grow, see, and experience aspects of the world that I would never have guessed would have even existed.