GSD Student Fellowships

GSD Student Fellowships

[music playing] The GSD is such an
experimental environment that really pushes you to
go beyond your own limits and think about
reality, but also think about what the future
of that reality should be. We’re not just thinking
about the next five years or the next 10
years or when we need to pay off that loan repayment. We’re thinking about how will
this design be possible in 10 years or 20 years or 50 years. It’s a place where you have
such a great range of design work, design thinking. And you have some of the
strongest and best architects in the world who
come here to teach. Financial aid is a
prerequisite for creating a diverse institution. We want to be able
to welcome the most innovative, the
brightest students who are interested in
studying at the school without financial hindrance. Financial aid has allowed
me to pursue things without restriction
and I’m working on a tourism site in Ireland. There’s monastic ruins
from the 5th century and at the same time,
the new Star Wars films are filming there, and so
there’s a strange collision of cultures. I am the Daniel Schodek
Fellow and Daniel Schodek was a professor who was trying
to make people understand that technology was the
new frontier in design. I’m developing this
library of code that make it simpler for other
people to program robots. I feel really honored by
representing and honoring his name. The GSD can be expensive. 3d printing and making
models is quite expensive. The financial aid allows
for a level playing field. Being a recipient for
the Brenda Levin Fund, actually it was
to empower women. And because I’m involved
with women in design, it just shows that the GSD
cares about a lot of things I care about. I’m paying my way to
the GSD, so applying I knew the stakes were getting
substantial financial aid or not being able
to come at all. I’d like to propose a
thesis in Japan that is centered around new
UNESCO heritage policies. In the next two years, I hope to
travel to Japan, finding a site and proposing a
preservation and workspace. I believe you can’t
design in a vacuum. You can’t take
people out of place. It’s the idea of
social consciousness and I think the
end goal really is to find a kind of happy medium
between design and development, where I can hopefully go into
the design of mixed income and affordable housing. To many of our students, their
aim is to go out in the world and be a public servant,
to try to make the world a better place. We really need to give
our students the option to be able to do that, to
think about creativity, public service, social justice. And they can’t do
that if they’re burdened with $50,000,
$100,000 worth of debt. It’s just not possible. Financial aid also
provides access for the GSD to a whole host of individuals,
creative thinkers that we otherwise wouldn’t have
the capacity to have them be part of this committee. This is why financial aid is
so critical for the future of this school. With a much more
open ended future, one which is not going to
be burdened so significantly by debt, we will see
students doing things that are truly innovative. I think there is a direct
connection between innovation and freedom from debt. I want to thank the
friends of the GSD and the alumni for the
support for the school. I can’t thank them enough
for the opportunities that I’ve received as a result
of their work and generosity. I don’t think the
school would be as rich an environment
without that support. Thank you so much. I really, really appreciate
the opportunities that have been given to me at GSD. And I really can’t
wait for the time where I’ll be able to contribute
back to the community as well. [music playing]

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