Kofi Akakpo recently joined the ranks of the firm’s licensed architects. Kofi received his Master in Architecture I degree from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard. Today we celebrate his accomplishments.
What is the best part of your job?
The best part of my job is being able to make contributions to world class design projects for some of the leading research, healthcare and educational institutions in the world. Playing a role in creating spaces that can have tangible positive effects on large communities is something most architects would love to be able to do, and I get to do that every day.
Emergency Department expansion, Yale New Haven Health
What projects have you worked on and are currently working on?
I had several internships with the firm before joining full time, so I have had the opportunity to work on several projects in the office: Yale New Haven Health’s Emergency Department expansion, Skidmore, Wesleyan, and 105 West just to name a few. I am currently part of the Brandeis team, working on their new Phase 2 Science project.
New Science Building, Wesleyan University
What is the most important thing you have learned so far?
While this might not be the most important thing, one of the lessons I have taken from working on the types of complex and large scale projects that Payette works on is that it is futile to try to reduce the whole building to one idea. Instead, the task is to identify how you can complement your team’s efforts in developing a series of ideas that each have their own significant design impact and can also help in solving the myriad problems that arise when tackling such complexity.
If you could take a month-long trip anywhere, where would you go and why?
I have several places on the African continent that are on my list of places to visit: Zanzibar, Marrakesh, Cape Verde, Cairo, Cape Town etc. I grew up in Ghana and one of my biggest disappointments is that I have not traveled enough on my home continent.