A teacher asks his student, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"
The child replies without hesitation, "An architect, just like my grandma. I want to be just like her."
Welcome to 2061, when I have become an old grandparent, and my grandchild will have been inspired by me as I was by my own. My grandfather is my biggest influence, although I never met him, as he passed from a heart attack before I was born. But ever since I heard that he was an architect, I felt I had to follow his steps. Maybe it was the misfortune of his sudden death, but I felt as if I had discovered my grandfather's blueprints for some final project he never completed. As his youngest grandchild, I assumed the responsibility to understand these metaphoric blueprints and continue his life's work.
My grandfather served as project director of Korea's Gimpo Airport, the biggest airport in the country at the time. This was a global project which involved many architects- only the best of the best were chosen to participate in this project, and Grandpa Park was the director. He connected many countries together and helped spread Korean culture to the world, and I want to be just like him: I wish to become and architect to let Korea's customs be known to the world through my architecture.
My career path was set in stone at an early age, and I know this is a privilege most other students aren't able to enjoy. So, since I was ahead, I made sure to carefully plan. By the time I entered my junior year, I had already figured out the path to earning my degree in architecture. I developed an interest in Hanok, Korea's traditional architecture; perhaps it was how the curves of the roof juxtaposed with the rigidity of the framed white walls, or how the balance of the white sheets and the sienna wood titillated my eyes, or how Hanoks connect with their environment. No matter the reason, everything about the style appeals to me, and I want to learn more about it. So, my first year out of college, I plan to travel to Asian countries to interactively learn about Hanoks, and about how this style can mix with modern interior designs to gain popularity in our society today. My ultimate goal is to design a fusion Hanok hotel in the heart of Las Vegas to give the world a chance to fall in love with my country's traditional architecture as I have.
I am one of the few who are able to say that my grandfather built the largest airport in his country, but perhaps my own grandchild will be one of a fewer number of children who can say that his grandparent built a beautiful hotel in Las Vegas. I am not sure what skills my grandchild will have, but I hope my efforts and achievements will one day have the same effect on him that my grandfather's had on me. As tradition of Hanok still continues today, I hope the legacy of my grandfather will continue through my grandchildren and through our accomplishments which will remain standing centuries after we are gone.