The School Newspaper of Texas High School

Braylen Garren

Freshmen Jared Segura and Eli Shelley use spaghetti and tape to construct a tower. This was part of the architecture class here at Texas High.

Designing the future

Welcome to Room 230

Sliding parallels squeak and balsa wood snaps. Slowly something new is created. A bridge is built, connecting art and engineering. This is the magic of architecture.

Architecture and construction is one of the many CTE paths offered at Texas High School. The courses offer insight into the various fields of architecture, interior design and construction technologies. However, the benefits of these classes are not limited to those planning to pursue a career in architecture or construction.

“[The goal is] just to get a well rounded understanding of how all these different branches work,” architecture teacher Jill Yates said. “Hopefully pick a little bit of interest, but if you know how to read a plan and you know a little bit about drafting and you even know the basic CAD plans, there’s so many industries that use technical drawings in their industry, that you can literally get a job anywhere.”

Architecture is a challenging field to get certified in. It takes years of schooling and requires an understanding of both math and the arts.

“There’s so much to the industry. I’m still learning stuff about it,” Yates said. “I’ve been teaching prep reading and drafting for 15 years, but architecture is a whole different animal. So, it’s a lot.”

The course is teaching students valuable skills that will help them in their future careers. In architecture, you have to completely relearn how you do seemingly simple things, from holding a pencil to writing letters.

“The first year really taught me how to actually draft like pencil and paper and line techniques and such,” senior Brock Humphrey said. “And then the second year that I took it, I learned how to put it on the computer. It’s just taught me a bunch of critical skills for going further in this career.”

This is Yates’s first year teaching architecture at Texas High School, replacing teacher of over 20 years, George McCasland. While many expected the transition to be rough, Yates has confidently filled the role and is already a favorite of many students.

[Architecture has] just taught me a bunch of critical skills for going further in this career.

— Brock Humphrey

“I just had Mr.Mac for a year and he was fun,” junior Jared Hernandez said. “He was everything that my friend told me and Mrs.Yates, she’s fun too. She lets us have fun but at the same time, she knows when it’s needed to be through. She knows how to teach her class as much as Mr. Mac did.”

Yates is still becoming accustomed to teaching architecture—a trade less hands-on than her previous job as a welding teacher—but now that she’s gained her footing, the program can be expected to change to better suit her teaching methods and ensure her students get the most out of her classes.

“This is a program that is going to kind of continue to evolve since I’m new here and just kind of getting my feet wet with architecture,” Yates said. “Things are gonna change a little bit for next year, and then maybe the next year after that. So it’s evolving. It’s not set in stone, so it’s a little bit more flexible than some of the other courses.”

That is one of the amazing things about architecture; despite the restrictions, you still have so much freedom to do what you want, make what you want. The ability to have a design in your head and then actually make it real, to let other people see it as well, that’s a truly magical thing.

“I just love to be able to make up my house, be able to measure it and be able to just build it on the computer and draw it out,” Hernandez said. “Just be able to make a house out of scratch.”

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