September 12, 2019

It’s hard to believe that the fall semester is already underway! In honor of hitting the books, we asked Gresham Smith employees to tell us about their favorite or most memorable college class. Keep reading to see what they had to say.



My favorite class was Architectural Ontology. We studied architecture from a philological point of view, considering many factors such as ethics, logic and human behavior. One of our most memorable conversations was in regards to the Roman Colosseum—an architectural marvel that was based on both human suffering and entertainment. Can it be called architecture?

Adolfo Merchand Cravioto, LEED Green Associate, WELL AP
Universidad Intercontinental
Miami, FL



During my junior year I took a ceramics class as an elective. It was only for a semester, but I was able to use my creativity outside of my interior design projects and learned the benefit of having a creative outlet. During the semester we had access to the studio outside of class time, so whenever I needed a break or was stuck on a design problem I would go throw on the wheel for an hour or so to clear my head. Even now I go to a local pottery studio here in Charlotte from time to time.

Sarah Peterson, NCIDQ, LEED AP
Applachian State University
Interior Designer
Charlotte, NC



During graduate school I took a real estate and planning class, which was for both urban planning students and business and real estate students. We explored development from both a planning and policy perspective and a market-focused and investment perspective. We spent the second half of the class participating in the Urban Land Institute’s UrbanPlan program, where we were tasked with developing a site plan and pro forma for a multi-block tract in a hypothetical downtown scenario. We even had to present our plan to a mock City Council at the end. The project was real world, hands-on and three dimensional. It was by far one of the most stimulating, creatively-energizing and useful classes I have taken – and not to mention, fun!

Amanda Sapala
University of South Carolina and Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL



My most memorable class in college was Architectural Theory. Only a few students signed up to take the class, which made it feel more like a graduate-level course. At the end of the semester, each student had to give a presentation to the class on one of our weekly topics. My presentation was about hyperrealism and modernism, so I presented on famous architects Peter Zumthor, who designed Norway’s Steilneset Memorial, and Daniel Dibeskind, who designed the 9/11 Memorial.

Sam Ball
Mississippi State University

Architectural Project Coordinator
Nashville, TN