Architecture graduate will soon begin to build his dream career

Photo courtesy of Kyle Ferry
By Barbara Gutierrez

Photo courtesy of Kyle Ferry

Architecture graduate will soon begin to build his dream career

By Barbara Gutierrez
A full-time job awaits Kyle Ferry at RLF Architects in Orlando.

As a young boy constructing multicolored LEGO buildings in his South Brunswick, New Jersey, home Kyle Ferry dreamed of one day of building real structures.

“I just thought it would be neat,” he said. The 2020 graduate is well on his way to achieving his dream. He graduated with a Bachelor in Architecture from the  School of Architecture and will start a job with the Orlando-based RLF Architects.

Ferry, a Foote Fellow, credits his success to the unique culture that the School of Architecture has created.

“Many other schools of architecture have a culture of competitiveness where students don’t really share their work with each other,” he said. Here, Ferry pointed out, he learned a great deal from his professors but also by sharing ideas and projects with fellow students.

That love of the school drove him to become a School of Architecture ambassador. He would give tours, sit on panels, and act as a mentor to visiting students who would shadow him.

His work in the classroom also became well-known and respected. One of his professors, Joel Lamere, said that “teaching would be so easy” if he had more students like Ferry.

“Kyle is a bolt of energy and enthusiasm in studio—the kind of student who starts working on a problem even as it is being presented to him,” said Lamere. “And I don’t mean that in some kind of fly-off-the handle sense. He’s thoughtful and deliberate and absorbing input the whole time. In that sense, he’s a perfect student. He wants to learn about everything that comes his way but isn’t content to be a simple receiver of information. He genuinely wants to contribute, both to the conversation and the experience of his peers.” 

While at the University, Ferry also decided to resume another interest and played the snare drum in the Frost Band of the Hour, where he enjoyed the energy and joy of taking part in football games.

He singles out his semester in Rome as a great learning experience. Ferry traveled with professors Jean-Francois LeJeune and Jaime Correa and was exposed to all the art and architectural wonders of that classical city.

“To see all these things we had been studying was incredible,” he said. “But you really do not appreciate it until you see it in person.”

Besides the usual design classes, Ferry enrolled in a studio focused on parametric and acoustical design with Lamere, which allowed him to learn all about modeling software such as Grasshopper. In parametric design,  the relationship between elements is used to manipulate and inform the design of complex geometries and structures though computer generated models.

“I felt this was an opportunity I could not pass up,” he said. In the class, Ferry designed a helmet that would only allow for partial sight and hearing. It was made to create a disorienting effect, blocking out half of the user’s vision and limiting hearing to only one ear. The goal of the helmet was to create an interesting acoustical experience for the user. 

He used EPS foam and shaped the structure with the School of Architecture robotic arm that allows for precise cuts. He also utilized a wire cutter to hand-cut the interior structure of the helmet.

Ferry hopes to use what he learned in the parametric and acoustic class in future projects where mitigating sounds or providing diverse elements to the acoustic quality of spaces is important.     

“It is just such a cool thing,” he said. “It made me a better designer.”