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  • The JE:DI Agenda in Action – The ARE Challenge ‘360’ to overcoming barriers to licensure

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    The JE:DI Agenda in Action – The ARE Challenge ‘360’ to overcoming barriers to licensure

    Friday, February 4, 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm PST

    Please join us on Friday, February 4, 2022 (12-2pm PST) for our second virtual session of The JE:DI Agenda in Action – The ARE Challenge ‘360’ to overcoming barriers to licensure. In the first part of the workshop, we will reconvene the cohort of scholarship recipients from the inaugural 2021 EQxD ARE Challenge. Cohort members will share their journeys in the past year, including progress towards Architectural Licensure. This opening segment will be followed by a moderated panel discussion to gather input on how we can better support pathways to licensure. In the second part of the workshop, we will gather in break-out groups to revisit the Frameworks for Action (introduced in the 12/3 session) to identify barriers to licensure and to ideate and assess strategies for promoting persistence and success towards achieving this pivotal professional milestone.

    Registration for this program is open at the bottom of this page


    Learning Objectives

    After attending this program, participants will be able to:

    1. Describe AIASF’s EQxD ARE Challenge Scholarship program, including the program’s goals, strategies implemented to date, and preliminary outcomes.
    2. Identify systemic barriers to licensure that cause this pivotal professional milestone to act as a career pinch point that disproportionately impacts the career progression and persistence of BBIA, female, and older professionals.
    3. Practice using the EQxD’s Frameworks for Action to identify and assess the potential impact of systems interventions designed to promote just and equitable pathways to licensure.
    4. Commit to implementing one of these identified strategies with the support of fellow members of Equity by Design’s Community of Practice.


    About the Series

    Last year in the wake of multiple pandemics impacting societal and environmental challenges, we came together to grapple with the resultant shifts and compounding disruptions that have challenged how we live, work and thrive. At this inflection point, we quickly pivoted and expanded our platform to respond to the rapidly changing needs of our profession and community members. #EQxD2020 Series, The JE:DI. Agenda introduced a Justice– and Equity-driven approach to drive Diverse representation and Inclusive results at the contextual intersections of Social/Economic, Health, Environment, and Practice.

    This year we will continue the next chapter with The JE:DI. Agenda in Action with an augmented series of panels and workshops that will build on the outcomes of last year’s critical discourse and frameworks. We will begin with a summary of what we learned in 2020 and build upon it with today’s evolving challenges with an overview of JE:DI frameworks for solving these challenges proposed to date across multiple organizations. Together, we will begin to co-create an intersectional “Roadmap for Action” designed to guide practitioners and firm leaders in their commitments to initiating and sustaining systemic change by dismantling systems of harm and oppression. We will propose a new paradigm for designing a just future in which the built environment cultivates dignity, belonging, agency and mutualism.


    The ARE Challenge Scholarship Panelists

    Jamilla Afandi

    Jamilla is a local San Franciscan, born and raised in the Bayview/Hunterspoint. She was introduced to architecture through my 7th grade math course. She pursued architecture through ACE Mentor, Build SF, while in high school and continued on to earn an M.Arch and MUP from the University of Michigan.

    Niknaz Aftahi

    Niknaz received her BA from the BIHE, the Bahai institute for Higher education, in Iran, and finished her M.arch at UC Berkeley in 2014. She has worked at els architecture firm, and has been teaching online to Bahai students who are still banned from entering university due to their beliefs.

    Marie Biaggi

    Marie attended UC Santa Barbara where she earned degrees in Architectural History and Environmental Studies. Driven by a passion for high performance building, she is a LEED Green Associate and Certified Passive House Consultant. When she’s not in the studio, you can find her enjoying the outdoors with her fiancé and dogs.

    Jenn Hamrick, Assoc. AIA

    Jenn Hamrick, Associate AIA, LEED Green Associate is an Architectural Designer and BIM Manager at Wilson Associates, a design/build/development firm in Oakland, CA. She identifies as bisexual and was raised with a Wiccan / Jewish background, fostering an interest in equity and accessible design. Her architectural education began at Anne Arundel Community College where she received a strong technical background before moving on to Morgan State University graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science in Architecture and Environmental Design and a Master’s of Architecture. During the pandemic she managed a group of volunteers 3D printing PPE for first responders, donating over 8,000 face shields.

    Mona Nahm

    Mona is a designer at Y.A. studio in San Francisco working on affordable and supportive housing projects. It is a rewarding experience because she has the opportunity to design diverse and inclusive spaces that respond to our current economic and environmental pressures. Most importantly, she engages with a community that shares the same vision of a sustainable, equitable, and just future.


    Architect Registration Examination (ARE) Challenge Scholarship Program

    The ARE Challenge Scholarship Program recognizes that the effort and expense of the architectural licensing process as a barrier to achieving this professional milestone and disproportionately affects candidates of historically underrepresented identities in the profession. In light of the extremely challenging and economically unstable conditions that we are collectively facing, AIASF Equity by Design has established financial assistance scholarships for licensure candidates who are eligible to take the ARE exams. Submissions are due by Friday, April 15, 2022.

    Selected Recipients of the ARE Challenge Scholarship will be reimbursed for three (3) ARE Exams (Value $705 per recipient), regardless of pass or fail status. Recipients will also receive six (6) complimentary registrations to AIASF ARE prep classes.

    We are also seeking AEC co-sponsorship of this program to fund additional ARE Challenge Scholarship recipients; contact sponsorship@aiasf.org to learn more.


    • Applicants must be currently eligible to take the ARE Exams for Architectural Licensure.
    • Candidates must be currently authorized to work in the United States.
    • Applicants are strongly encouraged to participate in 2021 EQxD programming.


    Scholarship Partners
    AIASF Architecture Licensing Committee | AIASF Mentorship Committee | AIASF Equity by Design Committee


    Program Sponsors

    Silver Level

    Steel Level

    Bronze Level

    Copper Level

    Sherwin Williams Coil Coatings      Tipping Structural Engineers
    Walker Warner Architects


    Need-Based Complimentary Tickets

    This program is welcoming and supportive of those interested in attending that are currently experiencing economic uncertainty. We will ensure that there are no barriers to access for this program.

    In recognition of the compounded challenges of this time, AIASF Equity by Design will be providing need-based complimentary series tickets for those challenged with financial hardship. If you are a student, emerging professional, or practitioner who is currently unemployed or under-employed, please email info@aiasf.org to request complimentary registration for the session.


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    Friday, February 4, 2022
    12:00 pm - 2:00 pm PST
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    Online Event


    AIA San Francisco
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