Rachel Peterson, Bronze Medal Nominee (2017)

Reflection on “Intervention”

To attend college is to take part in an intervention. As an intervention is an event or interruption that takes place with the intent of changing or improving an outcome, so is college a time in which one changes the course of his or her life with the intent of improving his or herself. College intervenes between the years of childhood and adulthood with the purpose of modifying one’s behavior. Judson has the goal of “shaping lives that shape the world.” Studying architecture at Judson can be described as an intervention. The students’ learning is enriched and their perspectives are broadened, and then they later go on to intervene in the world.

A liberal arts college is an intervention by nature; it requires that one consider their topic of study in the wider context of other fields. At Judson we study architecture, but other areas of study intervene and influence our perspective. In this way, the study of architecture at Judson is not limited to thoughts about just architecture. We are taught and challenged to consider a broader context and, as a result, significant questions intervene in our work: what is our purpose on earth? What is my purpose? How can architecture represent and become a part of the kingdom of God? Liberal arts study is intervention, and so is studying liberal arts and architecture from a Christian perspective.

Exploring the study of architecture through a Christian lens has the effect of an intervention on architecture; it changes how and why we design, with the intent of improving design. There are good reasons to design sustainable buildings that encourage human flourishing, but the intervention of the Christian perspective and mission adds to architectural thought. We are called to be good stewards of God’s earth and to love our neighbor. These ideas greatly impact architecture. Christian life is an intervention. Being a Christian is a way of life that should intervene in all that we do and say, especially in our life’s work and the study of architecture.

My time at Judson has certainly been an intervention not only academically, but also regarding personal growth. I have met friends who have intervened in my life. They have taught me what love is and they inspire me to be a better person. I see God’s love through the way that they live. I have met professors who have intervened in my life by challenging me to be my best self and to use my talents in the best way. I did not know what to expect when I enrolled at Judson and started my college journey. In that way, this journey has been even more like an intervention. I did not know that I had so much learning and growing to do until now, four years later, I see the positive change that has occurred in my life as a result of my time at Judson.


Exhibits of Coursework (click to expand)


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