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Melina Aluwi

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Published on:

October 30, 2023

Melina Aluwi

Hometown: Los Angeles | Jakarta, Indonesia

What was your reaction to hearing that you had been named NewSchool’s Alumni of the Year?


How have you stayed involved with NewSchool over the years?

I served on the Alumni Advisory Board as the Mentorship Committee Chair where we started an alumni mentorship program that is still active today. I then served as the Board President of the Alumni Advisory Board. Since then, I have continued to volunteer my time as a resource in different capacities.

Why did you choose to earn a degree at NewSchool and what did you enjoy most about it?

The program sounded collaborative, hands-on and was taught primarily by adjunct faculty who were also actively practicing in the field of architecture outside of the classroom.

How would you describe your experience as a student at NewSchool?

What stands out the most is the collaboration and mentorship I experienced with my professors and my classmates.

What was your favorite NewSchool class?

Design Studio

What is one thing you wish you would have done or taken advantage of during your time at NewSchool?

I participated in the Rome, Italy study abroad program, which was extremely rewarding and memorable. If I did it over again, I would have considered a second study abroad program.

What was the most important thing you learned at NewSchool?

The value of effective communication and presentation skills.

How did NewSchool help to prepare you for your career?

NewSchool challenged me to push myself beyond my limits and discover what I was capable of achieving.

What did you do after graduating?

I started a position at a boutique architecture firm.

What are you doing now? What projects are you currently (or recently) working on?

I lead the Higher Education studio for HED in San Diego, CA. We are currently working on multiple projects including a multi-phase campus expansion for a private university in San Diego.

What career achievements are you most proud of? What do you consider the biggest challenge of your career?

I am most proud of the client relationships I have developed.

What advice would you give to current students and younger alumni looking to follow in your footsteps?

I would share one of my favorite quotes: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”