Bringing Dreams to Life
Nicholas Spano’s goal of becoming an architect began in high school. After taking a class on the topic, he decided that he was “up for the challenge of becoming an architect.”
As a New York Tech architecture student, he is working on impactful research projects, such as the Westchester Creek Environmental Education Center and Butterfly Sanctuary in the Bronx, N.Y.
Spano, who has dreams of owning his own firm after graduation, feels that his education and experience at New York Tech has readied him for this next step. New York Tech “has thoroughly prepared me to go wherever I choose to go,” he said.
The Box sat down with Spano to hear more about his accomplishments and time at New York Tech.
What led you to study architecture at New York Tech?
When looking for schools in the New York area, I was overwhelmed. I narrowed my search by speaking to architects in the field. Three out of four of them recommended New York Tech to me for its excellence, architectural accreditation, and price.
In high school, I took an architectural drafting class that sparked my curiosity. My teacher, Mrs. Troyano was a retired architect, who was stern but inspiring. She described architecture as being just as perilous as it was rewarding.
New York Tech’s studio community has helped make every day a new and exciting experience. We are a family of students and teachers who are all going through the motions together and supporting each other.
Can you talk about some of the projects you worked on?
A notable research project I worked on was the Westchester Creek Environmental Education Center and Butterfly Sanctuary in Bronx, N.Y. The project started out as a studio assignment in which everyone in the class had to re envision Westchester Creek. I came up with the Environmental Education Center and Butterfly Sanctuary as an attempt to allow native species to reclaim the land by promoting biodiversity while simultaneously educating the public. This project inspired me to allow the community to reclaim the waterfront from the factories that have taken it over and polluted the estuary while providing a learning center that would help residents shape the future of the waterfront. My professor asked that I submit the proposal to the AIA COTE Top Ten Student Awards because she felt that the project met the requirements exactly.
How has your experience prepared you for life after graduation?
I plan on continuing my architectural journey to see how far it can take me. I’m currently working for AVS Architects in Staten Island while studying for my Architectural Registration Exam. When I receive my license to practice architecture, I plan on opening my own firm with the mission to bring affordability, sustainability, and beauty to new and existing buildings.
I sincerely feel that the architectural faculty, as well as the student community at New York Tech, has thoroughly prepared me to go wherever I choose to go. I received my job at AVS Architecture through a referral from another student at New York Tech, I can tell my employers I have been to Spain on a study abroad program, and I can say I received a degree from an accredited architectural university in Manhattan, which for me, I never thought was possible.