Prof. Duddy ARCH1101.OLC5 | Prof. Rosen ENG1101.LC07

Discussion: Introductions

This semester, we will collaborate on work for the two courses in this First Year Learning Community (FYLC). To get to know each other better, please add a comment to this post introducing yourself to the class. You could include your academic interests, why you chose your major, what you enjoy reading, listening to, watching, and doing in your spare time, or anything else you want to share (include your pronouns, if you wish). Your introduction can include images and links as well as approximately 150 words.

This week, 1- add your introduction in a comment early enough (Monday morning makes sense) for everyone to have time to 2- read all the comments and 3- comment on a few to show shared interests, to encourage, to ask to learn more, to share kindness, by the time our next week begins on Wednesday, 9/2.

Remember that you do not need to use your real name in this comment–your display name will do, either in the comment or autogenerated as the author of the comment.

Also, remember that even if you don’t have an OpenLab account, you can still complete this assignment because you can still add a comment!


  1. Luka Vardoshvili

    My name is Luka and I chose architecture as my major. Since I was a child I was interested in designing and drawing, so I decided to follow my grandfathers path and become an architect.
    My favorite subjects are Math, Art, English and music ( I am not including architecture classes because this is first time I am taking architecture class ). During my spare time I usually draw, watch movies, listen to music or go out with my friends. I am very sociable person and I have many friends but only one or two who I can trust. I also like to spend some time with my family during my spare time.
    I do not love reading and I do not hate it either, but sometimes I like to read some informational books and news.
    I am ready to do my best and learn everything I need to acquire architecture professional level.

    • Michael Duddy

      Welcome, Luka;

      With your love of Math, Art, English and music, you’ve definitely picked the right major. Architecture is a combination of all those things, and in many ways you have to be good at everything to be a good architect. It’s great that you have an architect in the family. Bot h my wife and I are architects and now our daughter is starting her second year of architecture school. I hope you enjoy your semester; this is a fun course and working with Prof. Rosen will certainly enhance your experience.

  2. Kevin Giron

    Hi, I’m Kevin Giron and my major similar to everyone here is Bachelor’s in Architecture as I have already applied and have been accepted into the new program. My interest for architecture started at a young age as I came across miniature models of actual buildings, monuments. I learned that many Architects create Scaled models of future projects and decided that this is a career path I wanted to take. I learned that more goes into being an Architect but overall I still am very interested to study and learn more of the career. I have some previous experience as I was in an architecture program in High school. When I have free time and an idea hits, I like to draw even though I’m not the best at it. The few times I have practiced realism/ portraits they surprisingly came out better than expected. That’s one thing I really want to improve on and become great at. I also love to listen to music and kind of played around with production but still needs practice. Overall, many things I love to do revolves around art and I would like to always keep practicing a craft and get better at them.

    • Michael Duddy

      Hi Kevin,

      I am always pleased when incoming students come to our class knowing already they want to be architects. As your comments show, you have a lot of creative interests, many of which you want to improve upon and in which you want to develop skill and confidence. Your next five years will challenge you to think logically and creatively. Throughout our careers as architects, we are always searching for new ideas and unique solutions to architectural problems, and finding new ways to express them. Check out online architecture journals such as DesignBoom and ArchDaily, and see some of the great stuff young architects are doing these days. Be prepared for a lifetime of learning: it’s a lot of fun.

  3. Alvin Kalicharan

    Hi my name is Alvin Kalicharan and I am from Queens, New York. I have always been interested in doing Architecture ever since high school because I studied it very heavily there. I always liked it and had a very strong passion for this career. In High school, I loved to create models and use software’s such as AutoCad and Revit. However, architecture isn’t my only strong passion, I also have a very strong passion for cars. I enjoy reading anything that has an adventure vibe to it and I love listening to music. Usually in my spare time I would try to hang out with friends or I would watch a show on Netflix. However though, during the outbreak in March I watched way too many shows so I tried to ease off the Netflix. I am very eager to meet new faces and learn new things in this class.

    • Michael Duddy

      Hi Alvin,

      It sounds as though you are arriving to City Tech with a good set of skills and interests which make architecture a good choice for a major for you. I know how difficult it was to adjust to the lockdown, and I wondered how people who weren’t in school or didn’t have hobbies or other interests filled their time. When you have a moment of free time go to some of the online architecture websites (some are mentioned in my response to Kevin above) and begin to think about what you like and get ideas that you might bring into your own designs. Also, read the articles; they are short, but they will help you understand how architectural journalists write about architecture.

  4. SiniaB

    My name is Sinia and I chose to study Architectural Technology as my major for two years. When I was younger, I enjoyed putting LEGOs together or any kits, drawing, and looking at the tall and different buildings that surrounded me whenever my mom took me with her to Manhattan whenever she went shopping. Putting kits together and getting a chance to admire and compare buildings is something I enjoy doing till this day.
    My favorite subjects are Art and Architecture (even though I was introduced to it during my highschool year). I enjoy art because it’s a chance to put whatever I’m imagining on to paper and there’s no wrong answer to it. I enjoy architecture because it’s a chance to learn the process and design of a building.
    In my spare time I enjoy listening to music, watching YouTube, drawing, and/or putting together a kit if I have one. Doing these things keeps me and my mind busy.

    • Michael Duddy

      Hi Sinia,

      You make a very good point: I always tell my intro students that in architecture there is no such thing as right architecture and wrong architecture. Buildings always have a reason for being built – no one builds out of a whim. However, there is good architecture and bad architecture: some buildings are loved and others we wish would go away. Your challenge is to always make the best building you can.

      Since you are registered for an associates degree, I hope as you progress towards your goal that you might consider transferring into the BTech or BArch degree when you reach your fourth semester. That’s when you’ll really get to design buildings.

  5. Jose Bocio

    Hello, my name is Jose. This is my first year and the first time that I take Architecture, I like this career because in the Dominican Republic where I am from. My father built many houses and buildings. I never got to see much because I lived with my grandparents, but I realize that it is cool and amazing how so many buildings give beauty to the cities around the world. Architecture for me is how you think about designing an environment for the people and making their lives even better. I like math, anime and swimming. Reading is not my type, but I do read. My challenge for me in this career is my pronunciation in English, I will work to improve it. I say that time will shape our future. Also, your work and effort will be worth it and that is why I will do my best to meet my goals.

    • Michael Duddy

      Welcome, Jose;

      We’re glad you are joining us. You are right that architecture is about designing the environment, and as architects we have a great influence on people’s lives. Architects have the special skill that allows us to see the world in a way that most ordinary people can’t. Walking down the street for us is like walking through a museum. There is so much to look at and think about around us that most people don’t notice. This class hopes to teach you to “see” the built world around you, that is, to look and think. You say you don’t like to read, but take a look at online journals on architecture (see Kevin, above). They’re a lot of pictures, but also read the descriptions. You’ll learn many new words and learn how we talk about architecture. I think you’ll find it interesting.

  6. Andre.j.Chen

    yo! 🙂 My name is Andre Chen and I chose architecture as my major. I first took interest in architecture not to long ago. In my sophomore year in high school I had trouble deciding what to do, that is until I tried architecture and enjoyed what they did there.
    My favorite subjects are Math, Science and Art. (In architecture you’ll need to have these subjects when designing a building)
    During my free time, I usually play games with my friends or hang out. I usually have a small group mainly because I’m mostly shy towards new people. I would like to change and interact more with other people, that is one of my goals within college.
    \ (•◡•) /

    • Michael Duddy

      Hi Andre,
      You came to the right place. In our First Year Learning Community, you will get to work with the same classmates in two classes in the same semester. This will bring familiarity and friendships that typical students might miss. As you and your classmates move forward, you will continue to harbor those friendships over the years. Shyness goes away when you get to know your colleagues.

      When I was an undergraduate student, I was a biochemistry major. I had a good friend who was studying art, and the two of us talked about how we wanted to be architects because it combined art and science. Your interest in these fields should serve you well as you pursue your degree. Good luck!

  7. Nisael Grullon

    Hey! My name is Nisael Grullon and I am a freshman in City Tech. This is also my first time taking an architecture class. From a young age, I always liked to build things, from building blocks to even cardboard. I used anything I could find to build something. But my passion for architecture started like when I was 14. At the time my brother was taking classes to become an architect. I remember seeing him draw sketches and creating those cool models, and from that moment on the idea of becoming an Architect had stayed with me. My favorite subject is math which is great because I know how much math and architecture are connected. About reading, I only enjoy reading when I find the subject interesting. Things I like to do in my spare time is to watch anime and Netflix’s series. Another hobby of mines is to play videos especially RPGs.

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Nisael! I’m sure in your architecture major, you’ll have the opportunity to build models with different materials–but how great that you used your creativity to build with what you had when you were younger. What materials do you like to use now? Any interest specifically in repurposing materials in an effort to reduce-reuse-recycle?

      I hope you–and all of us–develop as writers and readers this semester. It’s really helpful to find things you like to read and write about so you have the attention and interest to keep you invested as you develop your skills. Then we can work on how to transfer those skills to things that aren’t your favorite, or to find your interest in anything you’re writing or reading.

  8. shantal tapia

    My name is shantal and I have been interested in architecture ever since my sophomore year of high school. As a child, I would say that I have always been interested in architecture but I could never really find the right word that specifically describes my interest in architecture. Seeing how my high school revolved around architecture, I was exposed to many opportunities that allowed me to focus on architecture and eventually I gained a liking. My favorite subjects are math and art. I enjoy art and architecture because it is a way to let my ideas out or to let out my frustrations on paper. To me, math is a good way to challenge myself and to challenge the brain. The more of a challenge you face, the more you push yourself to get through it and this goes for anything, not just math. During my spare time, i enjoy watching movies, reading horror stories for the most part, listening to music or starting a new drawing/ project. During this quarantine, I have been trying to keep myself busy, now I’m just excited to be starting this school year even if it is virtually but my classes and assignments can help keep me busy.

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Shantal! You’re in good company having strong interests in math and art. What drawings have you worked on recently? Have you had time to sketch since the semester began? Do you find crossover between the movies and horror stories you like and the art you create? Finding inspiration in things you enjoy can help push you to develop your skills. I like what you said about challenges. The last six months have certainly been challenging. I wonder how you’ve found yourself balancing doing the things you like and facing the challenges. I hope this school year is a positive challenge for you!

  9. Zhipeng

    Hello my name is Zhipeng. This is my first year in city tech. I am interested in architecture because my grandpa use to be an architect and he really inspired me to be an architect. Hopefully we can meet each other in school one day. I do not really understand drawings but architecture made me wanted to start to learn how to sketch buildings. I am looking forward to learn more about architecture. I lived in the USA for 10 years and I made lots of friends. My favorite subject is math and english. And I hope this COVID-19 will end soon so we can go to school rather than staying home. If there’s any questions you can email me at and I will answer your question of best of my ability.

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Zhipeng! It’s so nice to see so many students in our First Year Learning Community (FYLC) following a family member on the path to architecture. I’m sure Prof. Duddy can advise you about how best to learn drawing for architecture–I don’t want to advise you incorrecty. But I would recommend practicing and experimenting, both for drawing and for other aspects of the college experience.

      It’s definitely a hard situation to start college remotely instead of being able to meet each other and make connections. I hope our FYLC can help you get to know each other better–especially since you’ll be in classes together for the next several semesters or years. And let’s use our site and social media not just to write and learn architecture but also to develop our relationships to become a community.

  10. Jayda White

    Hey my name is Jayda white. Sorry I’m now seeing this, I’m just getting used to moving around this website but my academic interest is english more specifically poetry, my college essay was actually based on a poem I wrote for class. English class was always my favorite out of all the subjects because I always did well and I enjoyed it more than other classes. I chose this major because I can see myself enjoying this as a career and I’m interested in architecture. I like the thought of having an idea that has the ability to come to life. I have no background knowledge on architecture at all but I’m here to learn about it. During my spare time I like to listen to music,play my guitar, watch tv and relax. Something else I like to do is riding my dirt bike which is a fun fact about me.

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Jayda! If we had met in person, I would have asked each of us to introduce ourselves and say something about ourselves that you would guess no one else in the class could say as well. Do we have any other dirt bike riders here? I am not.

      I can see connections between the other things you wrote about and your classmates’ interests and experiences. And I’m glad that so many of you are interested in English! Jayda, even though we aren’t writing poetry specifically for this class, I hope you will find inspiration from the approach we take to writing and architecture, especially to observation and an awareness of one’s surroundings. These are great skills for developing your poetry-writing expertise.

  11. Johnathon Abrego

    Hey I’m Johnathon Abergo, I chose architecture because I like to draw and I’m pretty good at drawing details and buildings, mostly good at anime and cartoon drawings. In my free time I either draw or chill on games. Either shooting or fantasy games such as pubg mobile and black desert mobile where you mostly level up ur character and take over the ranking list by getting rid of other players and mobs. I do not like reading or writing but I do enjoy reading lore in video games such as destiny where u find out what happened in the world that u are playing. I enjoy watching anime that has to do with fantasy with a solo type main character, aswell as YouTube and horror movies. For listening I would listen to pretty much anything with a good hard beat to it such as Anders and Chase Atlantic. And the end, hopefully this is 150 words good luck counting ٩( ᐛ )و

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Johnathon! It sounds to me like you like reading, but only the subjects that interest you. That makes sense! Maybe your classmates know some anime and fantasy novels or graphic novels that can interest you. Any recommendations, classmates?

      By the way, since I’m sure a lot of you thought about the 150-word length: I don’t usually count words but would estimate instead if necessary, and I would never give a recommended length just to make you write more. The recommended length is to give you a sense of scope so you know how detailed to be and how to organize your work. A 150-word introduction is different than a 1500-word introduction. Word length is only one aspect of writing that we’ll think about. Did you find it hard to get to 150? How does an assigned target length affect how you write and what you include?

  12. Stacy Amaya

    Hi, my name is Stacy Amaya and ever since I was little I’ve always been drawing and doing creative activities. I like to make things with my hands and put my imagination into reality. I chose Architecture because it’s an art in itself that I find very interesting and I enjoy doing it. I’ve studied it in High School and since then I’ve become more interested in it and I want to keep doing this as a career which is why I am now studying it in college. I like to watch videos that involve baking, building, drawing, and different ways of art, I also like to watch anime and listen to music and playing or creating music in my piano or guitar. I mostly start playing music and drawing when I get inspired. I also like to watch a lot of Asian dramas I find them very interesting at times. I also like to play sports anything active I’m up for. I also in a soccer in high school so that’s my most preference but I like to play others as well. There are times where I also play some games on my computer if I have nothing to do. I like to read comics or manga but I like to read things from Webtoon they always have something interesting in it.

    • Jody R. Rosen

      Welcome, Stacy! It’s great to read all of your interests. Do you want most of your videos on YouTube, or elsewhere? It must be hard to be a soccer player now–are you still able to play with other people, or has social distancing ended that for you? All of your interests in reading, video games, videos, etc, must help develop your sense of imagined worlds, which I would think would offer you creative inspiration and also help with your vision for architecture.

  13. Jody R. Rosen

    Thanks, everyone, for sharing about yourselves, your interests, what you bring with you to this First Year Learning Community. It’s great to see how many of you wrote about interests in art, reading, and writing–and also in other narrative experiences such as Netflix series, manga, and video games.

    If we were meeting in person, I would invite you to ask me any questions about myself, my education, and my position at City Tech. I’ll try to include some answers to questions I’ve been asked in the past as I introduce myself. I’m Jody R. Rosen, an associate professor of English here at City Tech. My pronouns are she/her/hers. I use my middle initial because there’s a Jody Rosen who is a well established writer on music and culture, and as nice as it would be to have his full list of accomplishments added into my own, I find it makes more sense to differentiate myself. Also, before I started working at City Tech there was someone else with the last name Rosen whose first name started with J, so he had the straightforward email address jrosen@, which meant I didn’t. He died before I was hired at City Tech, but his account was never closed, so when I started at City Tech, I missed a lot of email intended for me that was sent to that account. I tell this story in part to think about how my name is not unique, but also to give you a story to think about when you go to type my email address–be sure to use that r between j and rosen!

    I found it interesting to read Prof. Duddy share that he was a biochemistry major in college, even though he is now an architect. When I was a college undergraduate at Brown University, I double majored in English and biology. People used to find this combination strange, and would ask if I was going to write bio textbooks. That option didn’t make sense to me at all since my interest in English was more about reading literature than about more technical writing. Textbooks aren’t what I would consider great reading or writing! I use science in my creative writing, and have also used some science concepts as metaphors in my writing about literature. My research is in 1920s women’s Anglo-American literature, which was my focus for my Ph.D. from the CUNY Graduate Center.

    I’m a native New Yorker, and love observing this city, walking or taking the subway–or ferry, or even the tram. I love exploring areas I don’t know, but also finding things I’ve never seen before in areas I know really well. That can include the built environment, the people, the plant life, the things thrown away and left behind. I’m so disappointed that we aren’t able to take field trips together now, but I’m working on ways that we can approximate to explore and observe safely.

    My work at City Tech has helped expand my research interests into teaching and learning, particularly communication-intensive pedagogy. I have written about First Year Learning Communities, about undergraduate research, and about open digital pedagogy. I mentioned on the first day that I am one of the OpenLab co-directors, and I’ve taught in FYLCs for about 10 years. If you have ideas for a research project outside of our course, let’s talk about undergraduate research options. Maybe we could even work together!

    I love reading, and have been reading a lot of detective fiction, especially with strong leading women set in the 1920s (yes, relating back to my research focus!). But like many of you, I like making things, so downtime for me also means cooking, knitting, crocheting, sewing, paper crafts, and small-scale container gardening. I’m sure as we get to know each other, we’ll find more things we have in common.

    Now you know me a little better. What other questions do you want to ask me? I’m looking forward to all of us getting to know each other while working together closely.

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