Thursday, September 25, 2008

Back to School

This Fall I will start Sustainable Design Program at UC Berkeley Extension. It came a surprise as previously they've said not accepting International Student. The Program is so specialized to USA citizen as contains such regulations and building codes. I managed to confirm that I'm really (really) want to do the course. Also my immigration status as Californian alien resident entitle those education.

I've only take one class, the core program : Principles of Sustainable Design to know better first. Since the Uni location in downtown San Francisco, I have to make a journey 1hour 20 minutes each way from Sunnyvale with Caltrain then catch Muni (electric bus) about 4-5 blocks away. The akward situation is not going there but actually come back home. My class finish at 9:30pm but the train depart an hour later, leave me wandering city at night on my own. Then arrived home at midnight.

I wasn't afraid. I used to walk alone after evening class. I have been in Wolverhampton -the city with damaging status. Once I have been followed while make a phone on the booth, the other time such an intimidating acts by kids. In Birmingham UK, I used to work night shift. Sometimes because so late or so early (morning) there were no bus around. I ended up having bicycle while in Stratford-on-Avon. Sadly, I lost two bicycle because being nicked. I couldn't believe there is people willing to snatch rustic bike cost only £5.

Well, that's part of city life isn't it?

The Professional Program quite challenging. It's only 10 weeks but packed with assignments like essays and readings. Talking about reading the list comes as nearly 200 tittles! It's combines wide spread issues such as cradle to cradle revolution, sustainability, the design, the basic understanding of design and then finally there is a project to produce a design that we would like to apply. So why I choose this program?

Silicon Valley known as the center of innovation on the green tech. It was started many year ago with solar panel industry, green house, then the electric car. The renewable energy from sun is abundant here. We've got sunshine always everyday with strong intensity. The state gives incentive of loan for solar energy housing project. The challenges is not just the energy, but also the material. We will looking any sort of new invention to make the product more nature friendly.

I have both engineering and design background. I will take my direction even further. Me and Mr. C used to discuss about how Revolution Industry changes the globe, what the impact, who have to responsible for this environment politically, why Bush administration refused to recognize global warming, what the reality to be live in more sustainable in everyday life, or what such gimmick about being "green and sustainable". All aspects we've seen from my perspective might have to explore deeper, holistic and challenge in other directions.

I am quite exciting as this week California will held two important events. West Coast Green and opening of California Academy of Science. The first about yearly event that most tradeshow of green building and construction. I'd like to get the grasp of newest technology in this industry. For my surprise Al Gore will give a speech on Saturday Conference. It was only confirmed last week. Yups, wish my lucky day.

The California Academy of Science lied in the Golden Gate Park. What make this building so special because these is become the first green Museum in USA. Designed by Renzo Piano, this building will capture the sun for heating through glass auditorium. There two incredible domes : Planetarium and Aquarium. But most striking feature is the roof. It's been planted with Californian natives using coconut fiber basket filled with soil. I can not wait to see myself. It will take another weekend.

Sorry, I might disappear somewhere.



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