Hello, I'm Emi.

 View my resume  here .

View my resume here.

I am formally trained in architecture, ergonomics, and educational leadership. That means I spend most of my days thinking about learning environments. 

I wonder about how people learn: the contexts, mindsets, and people who can instill lifelong curiosity. I help build organizational models in education and design spaces to support them. I create graphics that make information easier to understand.

I'm a registered architect in Oregon, researching user experience design in schools, productive nomads and their co-working environments. My expertise lies in engagement strategy and school design, which are my current focus at Mahlum Architects.

You can find me at gatherings of

what i stand for

I promote equity, authenticity and hard work.  
I am fascinated by social engineering and all kinds of user research; I'll meet you where you are.

I ebb and flow with the energy of my companions.
I engage in critiques as an offer of care: an important moment to be vulnerable together in communication.

I study different scales, direct and indirect forces, and put my faith in science. 
I strive to produce more than I consume.

I dance, row, and play my way through a jam.
I organize things with my hands until I feel out a pattern or place or spirit.

I seek out unique communities and their indescribable challenges.
I believe that if you’re not struggling, you’re not learning.

These are my teachers

They shape light, spirit, sound, space, bodies, and humor to make sense of the randomness around us. They help me understand what I'm seeing, feeling, and sensing. Together, we interpret chaos to create form.

 Sarah Trelease Yoga Instructor, Spiritual Guide

Sarah Trelease
Yoga Instructor, Spiritual Guide

 Alvin Ailey Choreographer

Alvin Ailey

Anything and everything can become our teacher of the moment, reminding us of the possibility of being fully present: the gentle caress of air on our skin, the play of light, the look on someone’s face. Anything and everything — if it is met in awareness.
— Jon Kabat-Zinn
 Yo-Yo Ma Cellist

Yo-Yo Ma

 Annie Leibovitz Photographer

Annie Leibovitz

 Nicholas Feltron Graphic Designer

Nicholas Feltron
Graphic Designer

 Robert Day Boat Builder, Engineer

Robert Day
Boat Builder, Engineer

 Sarah Malin Ethnographer

Sarah Malin

Emi is invaluable in that she keeps me balanced with this introspection: she helps me transition from dwelling in my head to expressing my insights through creation. She reminds me that states of flow come from a combination of self love and the earthly beauty of material, texture and energy.
— SM
The cosmos is full beyond measure of elegant truths, of exquisite interrelationships of the awesome machinery of nature.
— CS
 Carl Sagan Astronomer

Carl Sagan

 Heather Gary User Experience Researcher

Heather Gary
User Experience Researcher

 Andy Goldsworthy Artist

Andy Goldsworthy

We’re here on Earth to fart around. And, of course, the computers will do us out of that. And, what the computer people don’t realize, or they don’t care, is we’re dancing animals. You know, we love to move around. And, we’re not supposed to dance at all anymore.
— KV
 Kurt Vonnegut Author

Kurt Vonnegut

 Renzo Piano Architect

Renzo Piano

 Brook Muller Architecture Professor, Ecologist

Brook Muller
Architecture Professor, Ecologist

Emi is one of the most passionate and enthusiastic students I have worked with in my twelve years teaching architecture. She is articulate and dedicated, and has the design and graphic skills to explore and communicate her ideas in clear and exciting ways. Emi proved to be a wonderful collaborator, consistently offering critical insight to her peers and in all ways enriching and energizing our studio environment.
— BM

Things I'm Learning

 Taiko (Japanese drumming) with  Tsukasa Taiko   (Chicago) &  Korekara Taiko  (Portland)

Taiko (Japanese drumming) with Tsukasa Taiko  (Chicago) & Korekara Taiko (Portland)

 Welding (Metal Inert Gas) at the  Arc Academy  (Chicago) & other maker classes at  ADX Portland

Welding (Metal Inert Gas) at the Arc Academy (Chicago) & other maker classes at ADX Portland