While Canada has been his home since he was nine years old, Konstantin Manukyan is a long way from his birthplace of St. Petersburg, Russia. The incredible buildings that surrounded him in those early days sparked a deep passion for architecture; however, pursuing this interest may not have been possible in his home country.
“It would have been a different experience,” he said. “The education system is very different. It’s shorter and you have to go into the military for a couple of months. I just don’t see myself studying architecture if I was still there.”
Instead, Manukyan chose to study at Laurentian University’s McEwen School of Architecture, and he has quickly distinguished himself through his hard work. Last year, he was named the recipient of the Northeastern Ontario Construction Association Architecture Scholarship.
Established by the Northeastern Ontario Construction Association (NOCA), the scholarship is awarded annually to one full-time student, who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, entering his or her first year of study at the McEwen School of Architecture. The NOCA is part of the Industrial, Commercial and Institutional (ICI) construction sector that supports contractors, manufacturers and suppliers, service providers, consulting firms, and training and personnel providers. The ultimate purpose of the award is to help attract bright young architects to Northern Ontario.
“It [the scholarship] came as a surprise to me because I wasn’t really thinking about it,” Manukyan said. “From what I understand, they only have 10 scholarships planned like this. Being one of the 10 is special to me. It makes you realize that there is something to work towards because you are benefiting from it. It definitely pushes me.”
Manukyan said he wants to work as a professional architect one day, and hopes to have an influence on sustainable design practices. Illustrating the importance of creating environmentally sustainable buildings is a big part of the McEwen School of Architecture’s curriculum.
“The environment is very important,” he said. “The environment plays a big role in everyone’s life and climate change is a striking issue and one that is not slowing down anytime soon. Sustainable design looks at things long term to help reduce the carbon footprint. Maybe in the future I can also build more green buildings and houses to help preserve what we have.”
To learn more about supporting the McEwen School of Architecture, please contact the Development Office at Laurentian University.