At HMFH, we are committed to sharing our expertise with the next generation of architects. For the next installment of our Intern Spotlight series highlighting the work and accomplishments of our dedicated interns and co-ops, we’d like to introduce Ben Harding: a third-year architecture student at Northeastern University who joined us on co-op this year.
Since starting at HMFH this summer, Ben has spent the majority of his time working with the team on the new Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical High School in Taunton, MA. He developed numerous physical models of the school’s main entrance and overall form that helped communicate and visualize the design intent. Recently, Ben has also been helping with documentation and submittals for Bristol Aggie.
We checked in with Ben to discuss his co-op experience thus far and learn more about his plans for the future.
What drew you to architecture?
As a kid I made up floor plans for houses, so it wasn’t really a surprise to me that I ended up studying architecture. It took another decade before I realized all the things I enjoy (history, drawing, math and science) could be a part of the same profession. What finally convinced me, though, was the thought that I could take an abstract idea and make it into something permanent. It’s something that is unique to architecture that I don’t take for granted.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
My personal design philosophy is that nothing designed exists in a vacuum. Every piece of architecture is influenced by the environment, neighborhood, and people around it. In my own designs, this tends to result in architecture that highlights many of these different factors and often creates tension between them.
What’s been your favorite experience at HMFH?
I was lucky enough to be here for the annual bus tour. It was eye-opening seeing Bristol Aggie and Fales with the architects that designed them and be able to hear their answers on how every detail of the projects were thought through.
What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned during your internship at HMFH?
Working at HMFH has given me a new appreciation for how comprehensive projects of this size and scope can be. There are so many moving parts that I wasn’t previously aware of which means I’m always working on something new to me.
What is a piece of advice you would give to future interns?
It’s impossible to know what skills you might need for different projects–take advantage of your free time to learn different software, model making equipment, get better at graphic design, etc. Find what you like because if you have the skill you will have the chance to use it.
Do you have any plans for after graduation?
Graduation is still a long way off for me, but I plan on pursuing my master’s in architecture after undergrad. Other than that, all I know is I want to work with as many different firms and design projects as I can in the next few years.
Check out our recent Intern Spotlight series posts to learn more about HMFH’s interns and co-ops: