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Daniel Joseph Allen

Chicago, Illinois
Daniel Joseph


Architecture – May 2022 

Short-Term Goals

Short term goals are interesting as a thought process. What determines the "short term," and how often must those goals be updated? When practicing the goal-setting exercise, I generally find myself breaking the short-term into two camps: a current life season and immediately actionable items to be implemented within that life season. I thus find it important to reevaluate goals with each new season I find myself in. The season of life I currently consider myself to be in is that of academia. This is a rare and invaluable experience for me to be a part of, so, as a student, I have made it a goal to take advantage of the limited time I have in this season. What this means is I have made it a priority to challenge myself in my classes, make use of the wealth of resources and knowledge banks made available to me, and develop myself to become a well-rounded individual. I aim to keep a curious mindset, searching for the value in everything that I do, whether I like it or not, and looking for new ways to learn inside and out of the classroom. What this looks like in practice - the immediately actionable items - varies considerably. I try to stay active and engaged in my classes, striving first and foremost to learn rather than achieving a letter grade. From a social standpoint, this means engaging with my peers to form meaningful and mutually beneficial relationships. I make it a goal to maintain a diverse range of connections from various academic walks, from students to faculty. Additionally, I have found it productive to participate in and take on leadership roles within student organizations, providing me with a social forum and a means to explore ideas outside of the classroom. 

Long-Term Goals

Like short term goals, plans for the long term are extremely vital but can be more difficult to precisely quantify. My strategies for long term planning have evolved over the years from producing a specific roadmap with an end to identifying my skills and interests more broadly. In addition, I frequently ask myself what kind of person I want to be and what kind of person I am okay with being even if I cannot be everything that I want. This has allowed me more freedom in my own personal pursuits and has given me more contentment in life overall. I am less interested in specifically defining a profession as I am a way of living and a means of pursuing my passions. As of now I am particularly interested in problem solving. I am inspired by the more current issues facing our generation, like climate change, mass immigration, and social justice. My passion for problem solving has led me to design in the realm of architecture - one of the few fields that touches on such topics as ecology, social science, philosophy, and creative pursuits all at once. This has manifested itself as a pursuit of mine, so much so that it has determined many of my future goals, such as obtaining a Master's Degree in landscape architecture, a professional licensure, and a career within the realm of design. At this time, however, I still look to remain loose when it comes to strict career choices, so I prefer instead to look at what kinds of things I want to be doing in my future. Those things include helping other people through design-based solutions, being actively engaged in environmental activism/change, and remaining curious. I aim to develop habits now that I want to bring into my future, so things like reading, physical fitness, and meaningful conversations are all actions I am to repeat as often as I can. 

Leadership Experience

  • Director - iitAIAS Freedom by Design, Current.
  • Project Manager - iitAIAS Freedom by Design, 2018-19.
  • Finance Chair - iitAIAS Freedom by Design, 2017-2018
  • Baseball Team Captain - CMSA High School, 2016-2017
  • Lifeguard - Chicago Park District, 2015-2018
  • Junior Lifeguard Coach - Chicago Park District, 2016
  • Sound Technician - Uptown Baptist Church, 2015-2016
  • Senior Patrol Leader - Boy Scout Troop 923, 2015-2016