April 07, 2011

Students Impact a Future Campus Building

"We were really able to get a better understanding of how the different fields work compared to our own."

Nick Testa, Architecture ’11

Kay Shane, Interior Design ’11

Co-op Employer: Spagnolo Gisness & Associates, Inc.

Nicholas Testa, BSA ’11, and Kay Shane, BINT ’11, are leaving their mark on Wentworth in a way that is about as tangible as it gets—a campus building. As two of seven Wentworth students that spent a co-op semester working for Spagnolo Gisness & Associates, Inc. (SGA), the architecture firm responsible for designing the Flanagan Campus Center, the students had the opportunity to impact the design as well as gain practical career experience.  

Set to break ground on May 14, 2011, the construction and renovation project will enrich the student experience at Wentworth. Testa and Shane were able to sit in on client meetings and offer input about ways that the cafeteria might provide more seating variety, or the likelihood that students would take advantage of things like an outdoor balcony.

As a part of the co-op, the students were offered the chance to shadow different members of the firm, attend meetings and seminars, engage in technical aspects of the design process, and work independently on their own project. Testa and Shane were charged with creating a kiosk in the library on campus which detailed the history of Beatty Hall and showcased the design renderings. They were responsible for creating a dynamic design, gathering research and historical data, estimating and choosing materials, and constructing the project—all on a set budget. “I enjoyed getting to build the actual kiosk, seeing it on campus, and hearing feedback from the community,” says Shane.

The Wentworth students working at SGA came from diverse academic backgrounds—including architecture, interior design, facilities planning and management, and construction management—allowing for an inter-disciplinary learning opportunity. “It was a fantastic experience,” says Testa. “We were really able to get a better understanding of how the different fields work compared to our own.”

*The other Wentworth students that worked at SGA were upcoming 2011 graduates from various majors including: architecture (Than Dendoung and Karen Pettersen), interior design (Ian Bell), construction management (Sean Kaplan), and facilities planning and management (Chris Kozlovskis).

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