In today's special podcast Joanna and Michael sit down to chat about the Young Architect Conference and give you their top TEN takeaways.
1. Magic of bringing people together
You can plan the venue, you can select the right speakers / workshop leaders, but what you cannot plan is the synergy of the group. Our attendees at the Young Architect Conference were from all different backgrounds, religions, races and came together under one roof to change the profession of Architecture.
2. Attendees coming with open minds and hearts
Everyone who purchased a ticket to the conference showed up with an open mind and an open heart, where the term “young” meant less about age, years licensed, but more about the youthful energy.
3. The content of speakers and workshops was more about building a successful profession, then actual buildings.
As Leah said during her keynote “I could show you the architecture, but that’s not what this is about.”. This wasn't about building a building, it was more about building a person. The YAC was about mentoring, learning the “craft”, getting licensed, career development, and finding your path.
4. Personal Connections Made
Creating a small, relaxed environment helped to foster real personal connections. Everyone was smiling, happy, talking, listening, and connecting. No suits & ties, this conference was all about everyone just being themselves, present and available.
5. Recognizing and celebrating the next generation for their investments
Going through the journey to becoming licensed is a marathon! Being able to recognize the newly licensed in a profession that often doesn't was a refreshing change. In addition, taking the time to recognize some of the amazing members in the community for their leadership qualities was really a big highlight.
6. Conference for Community by the Community
This was the motto from the beginning and everything we did circled back to this. One of the ways this really showed was having the workshop leaders and keynote speakers part of the conference throughout and available on a continued basis.
7. The hardest thing was we never hosted a YAC before.
Planning the conference was a lot of work, time, and money! It was frustrating to see the lack of support from so many, but really rewarding to have all the attendees, sponsors (Construct, Design Arts Seminar, PPI, Amber Book, Hyperfine, Portland Design Pup), and the press (Archinect, Architizer, Arch Daily, Portland Architecture Blog, Let's Fix Construction).
8. Post YAC impact and actual change – this conference changed people
In the short weeks since we left the conference the actual changes people have started is amazing! From new blogs, websites, to quitting toxic jobs, losing weight, and starting to study for the ARE's, this conference inspired REAL change!
9. Super High-Value Conference
Quality over Quantity. Every step in the planning process was focused around creating a high-value experience for everyone there. This was reflected in the selection of speakers and leaders, the venue, the food, the parties, the swag.
10. Excited for Next year
Currently collecting a bunch of feedback to help cultivate next years conference. As this is for the community, by the community, we needed their input to make 2020 even better! Anyone who attended this year will get access to tickets first (and discounted!) and we will be limiting the number of tickets sold to ensure that same feel from this years event.
Special Shout Outs
Timothy Niou – Photographer