HMC Architects participated recently in the Cal Poly Pomona College of Environmental Design Education Design Topic Studio.

A committed supporter of the school since 1993, the firm donated funds in support of the studio, to support students’ printing and models, fieldtrips, final review expenses, and final project awards.

“Our support allows the students to do a deeper dive into education design,” says Kevin Wilkenson, principal at HMC. “It also gives them a better understanding of HMC and the real-world opportunities our work and culture provide.”

Cal Poly Pomona Architecture students enrolled in the design topic studio experience a learn-by doing approach that combines design theory and application with real-world experience. The topic of the studio focused on the rapidly evolving educational models in K-12 education and how these models affect, and are affected by, design and architecture.

During the semester, 19 students from the BArch and MArch programs analyzed educational design trends, built an interactive learning device, and designed their final project—a 21st century micro-school. Students analyzed a potential site for the school, conducted case studies, and designed a modern-day ‘one-room’ schoolhouse.

Final projects were presented to their instructor, peers, and a panel that included HMC’s Kevin Wilkeson, James Krueger, Michael Bernal, Gina Auduong, and HMC client Kim Coffeen, director of facilities planning at Irvine Unified School District. Coffeen’s participation sparked inspiring discussion and provided more real-world expertise to the students.

“It’s always a pleasure to see future architects in training,” says Coffeen. “The experience gives students an opportunity to present their ideas to potential future colleagues and receive valuable feedback from working architects.”

Participating in the studio also supports HMC’s recruiting efforts. And according to Kevin O’Brien, the studio’s instructor, this year’s group had fantastic potential.

During the studio’s final presentations, HMC chose eight of the best projects to receive special honors.

Honor Award recipients:

Koko Manouel

Elizabeth Yuksel

Ashlan Davis

Jesus Murillo


Merit Award recipients:

Peter McAuley

Maria Mercado

Viet Nguyen

Gustavo Trochez