Finding the Bright Side with John Maternoski

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In today’s episode, John Maternoski joins the podcast to talk about his architecture career and what he’s learned along the way.

Portland Design Pup | John Maternoski

When John Maternoski was a child, his dream was to be a meteorologist. He was interested in the details of how weather worked and what caused storms and other weather phenomena.

But by the time John reached middle school, he’d come to the realization that meteorology wasn’t the right career path for him. Instead, he became interested in a career in architecture, inspired by his grandfather who was a builder. The high school that John attended had an architecture class, which gave him insight into what lay ahead of him in architecture school.

John’s high school guidance counselor advised him to sign up for a two-year architectural technology degree at a technical school. By the time John realized that a two-year program was not all that he needed to become a full-fledged architect, he was already enrolled in the program. But rather than viewing the program as a 2-year setback, he found that it provided a good foundation for the things he’d encounter later in architecture school.

Listen to the episode to hear more about John’s architecture education, his entrance into the architecture field, and what his career is like now.

What You’ll Hear on This Episode  

  • How John became interested in architecture
  • John’s college and grad school experience
  • John’s early architecture jobs
  • John’s contract work
  • How Portland Design Events got started
  • John’s low point
  • Making architecture more interesting
  • John’s interest in meditation
  • How John thinks about sharing his experiences
  • The 2019 Young Architect Conference
  • John’s advice for aspiring architects
  • The book that changed everything for John
  • John’s favorite gadget
  • John’s best time-saving trick
  • How listeners can connect with John

 Top 3 Takeaways from This Episode

  1.   Something that looks like a setback may actually work out for the best.
  2.   It’s important to take time for self-care.
  3.   You can always learn something new.

John Maternoski’s Advice for Aspiring Architects

“I think the biggest thing is to be open to anything.”


Favorite Quotes

“I feel like if I listen to this two years from now, I’m going to be laughing like, “oh, you didn’t know anything”.” John Maternoski on what he knows today that he didn’t know back then 

“The Wump World by Bill Peet.”– John Maternoski on the book that changed everything

“My paper planner. My $12 academic weekly planner.” – John Maternoski on the resource he can’t live without

“I’m really fortunate that I’ve never really struggled with time management.” – John Maternoski on his best timesaving trick.

Resources Mentioned in the Show:
John Maternoski

John on LinkedIn

John on Facebook


Michael Riscica

Michael Riscica is a Licensed Architect, and the creator of Young Architect, an online platform and community dedicated to helping the next generation of Architects become the most successful generation of Architects. 
Connect: Linkedin / Facebook / Instagram

Hi there!

I’m Michael Riscica, the guy behind Young Architect. I write to help Architecture Students, ARE Candidates and Young Architecture Professionals be more successful at school, work and life!


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