MAKENZIE ELAM

UNC Charlotte (Master of Architecture)

SAY IT LOUD - North Carolina Exhibitor

North Carolina Based Designer

Who or what inspires you professionally?

My biggest inspiration is my family and support system. Seeing everything that they have accomplished over their lifetimes and the obstacles they have faced. It pushes me to the best person I can be and help as may people as I can.

MAKENZIE ELAM

Bio:

Makenzie Elam, a native of Durham, North Carolina, graduated a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from UNC Charlotte in 2020. She is currently a graduate student in her final semester at UNC Charlotte pursuing her Master of Architecture. In 2020, before COVID-19, she had the opportunity to study abroad in Rome, Italy and learn about Roman architecture. Her hope is to join the 5% of Licensed Black Female Architects and become an Architecture Professor, educating the next generation of designers.

How did you first learn about architecture and when did you decide that built environment profession was an area of interest for you?

In elementary school, I took a careers test and got matched with architecture. It wasn't until I took Interior Design in high school that I learned about the field. And from that moment on, I fell in love and knew I wanted to be an architect.

What do you do?

I am currently a graduate student in the School of Architecture at UNC Charlotte pursuing my Master of Architecture. I enjoy working with incoming students within the school providing advice and tips on how to succeed in the School of Architecture.

What excites you in the work you do?

To me, seeing how a project or space may impact an individual, family or community is currently what excites me the most. Knowing that I have the ability to positively impact someone with the work I do, makes me excited for the future.

Who or what inspires you professionally?

My biggest inspiration is my family and support system. Seeing everything that they have accomplished over their lifetimes and the obstacles they have faced. It pushes me to the best person I can be and help as may people as I can.

What is your proudest professional accomplishment or achievement?

I have two proudest accomplishments. The first would be graduating Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture. The second would be doing my thesis project on the history of African American communities, specifically on black education.

Featured Project Name: 

Shifted Trans-Plant

 

Featured Project Location: 

Charlotte, North Carolina

 

Featured Project Completion Date: 

Unbuilt (Academic Project)

 

Role in Featured Project: 

Project Team - With Alexus Jones

 

Featured Project Description:

Studio Professor -Kelly Carlson-Reddig Fall 2020 – Graduate UNC Charlotte – School of Architecture The Shifted Trans-Plant will serve as a connector of spaces and people through the program, green spaces, and transportation coming to the site; giving the site an opportunity to serve the community and residents of Charlotte. It will be home to the new Amtrak Station and link the Lynx’s light rail lines together, servicing as a hub for transportation and a beacon for live, work, and play.

Photography Credit:

Renderings: Makenzie Elam, Drawings: Alexus Jones

Featured Project Name: 

Mini Residential Complex

 

Featured Project Location: 

Charlotte, North Carolina

 

Featured Project Completion Date: 

Unbuilt (Academic Project)

 

Role in Featured Project: 

Sole Designer

 

Featured Project Description:

Thomas Forget Fall 2019 – 4th Year UNC Charlotte – School of Architecture The mini residential complex has four-unit and is located in the Belmont community. It was designed to be a community within a community, bringing 4 residents together, while giving each their own home and space. The complex has 3-unit types, two-bedroom, one-bedroom, and lofts. The four units have shared spaces on both ground floor and third floor, a courtyard and rooftop terrace.

Photography Credit:

Drawings: Makenzie Elam