Student Spotlight: Melinda Agron '14

by Jessica Zischke | 11/17/13 4:22pm

Melinda Agron ’14 has always found herself in awe of well-designed structures that not only are beautiful but serve a larger purpose of bringing communities together.

“My favorite places are public structures that bring people together for some kind of cultural experience,” Agron said. “I want to eventually design places like that.”

Before coming to Dartmouth, Agron found that art and architecture were activities she primarily enjoyed outside of her studies. At the College, Agron has been able to integrate her passions into her courses.

During Agron’s freshman year, she believed that engineering would be the most helpful major in bringing her closer to becoming an architect, but talking to professors and alumni showed her that this was perhaps not the best path.

“I realized I should be studying studio art if I wanted to pursue architecture to work on my portfolio and design skills,” Agron said. “My sophomore year I switched to an architecture concentration within the studio art major.”

This decision was not one that Agron took lightly, as studio art majors can face an uncertain future after graduation.

When Agron first switched to studio art, the arts facilities on campus were limited and classes often had to share rooms. With the recent addition of the Black Family Visual Arts Center, students have more room to work.

“Before, it wasn’t really our building, but now every major has its own studio,” Agron said. “There are many more opportunities to utilize the resources the school has to offer.”

Pursuing arts at a libearl arts school has its own challenges.

“With my off term I worked at an art gallery and I learned a lot about the business side of art, but it’s definitely hard to find something like that to do during the off-term,” Agron said.

Professors have helped forge connections between students and alumni working in architecture. Agron said she appreciated the opportunity to receive advice on her work and how to expand her portfolio.

This summer, Agron attended the summer architecture program at Harvard University, a six-week intensive program geared for students considering graduate school.

“Because it was so intensive, we produced a lot of really high-quality work, which has been really great for me in putting together my portfolio,” Agron said.

Agron is still uncertain of what the near future holds for her, although she is currently considering going back to work at the same gallery and is also applying for jobs at some architecture firms. Agron eventually plans to attend graduate school for architecture.