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Prashanth Raju

Designer
Safdie Architects
“Taubman College’s lecture series, lunch talks, and design reviews provided a wonderful platform to interact and exchange ideas.”

Why did you choose Taubman College?

As an architect interested in urban planning and design, Taubman College was on top of my list because the departments have a lot of overlap in terms of faculty and courses. The focus on international studies and the faculty coming from different parts of the world only made my decision easier. Taubman College’s constant efforts to bring in successful practitioners and academicians played an important part, too.

Describe the work that you do.

In my work at Safdie, the architecture often transcends scale and has a significant impact on the surrounding urban realm. The work that we do often has the user at the focal point and creates moments of interest at different scales. The projects that I am a part of are a residential tower in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and the Surbana Jurong Headquarters in Singapore. Soon I will be involved in the extension of Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. Before joining Safdie Architects, I was a researcher at the Future Cities Laboratory of the Singapore-ETH Centre. As part of the lab’s Dense and Green Building Typologies project, my research systematically drew and analyzed the design benefits of green components on high-density buildings in architecture and urban scale.

How did Taubman College prepare you for your career?

The curriculum at Taubman bridges the gap between academia and real-world practice. Some of the courses stretch your imagination and creativity, while at the same time, people from practice help evaluate and guide you through the process. 

What is an important lesson that has stayed with you from your time at Taubman College?

Listen, hear, and take in everyone’s voice — because everyone’s perspective is as important as yours. My cohort at Taubman was from different walks of life and different parts of the world, and just by listening to their perspectives, I learned a lot.

What did you like best about Taubman College?

Taubman College will always hold a special place in my heart because of the strong relationships that I shared with fellow students, faculty, and alumni. The University of Michigan has several schools and colleges and provides opportunities to collaborate with students from across campus, which I enjoyed. Engagement and inclusion are at the heart of the school’s curriculum, and this made me feel very comfortable. Go Blue!

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