It’s not every day you meet a 12-year-old who not only knows what she wants to be when she grows up, but is also actively pursuing that goal. This January, Spec Formliners enjoyed the privilege of a visit from Sophie, a bright and focused middle-schooler who knows exactly what career lies ahead for her: Sophie is going to be an architect. Through help from her school, family, and friends, Sophie is taking amazing initiative in submerging herself into the architectural world, soaking up as much knowledge as there is to offer.

When we first heard she wanted to see architectural engineering in action, we couldn’t wait for her visit. Sophie had never before seen a full set of blueprints, and she was new to CAD software. The timing of her visit couldn’t have been better. We had just delved into the CAD/CAM layout of two complicated and beautifully artistic murals over 38 feet wide. Sophie had the opportunity to see from the very beginning what steps go into the production of a mural of this scale. With 6 inches of positive relief in the concrete, these strawberry and artichoke murals are going to make a big impression on Salinas Road Overcrossing, as they already have with Sophie.

The highlight of the visit for Sophie was when we produced her own 3D nameplate. Using the skills and techniques we had demonstrated in the CAD software, Sophie was able to create her very first design. We sent the data from the CAD software to the CNC machine to produce a physical part from her design. Seeing her name being carved out before her eyes on precision machinery from a design she created may have been the highlight for Sophie,
but it was the inspiration and excitement in her eyes as she held up her first masterpiece that made her visit most memorable and rewarding for us.

Thank you, Sophie, for brightening our day, and best of luck with your architectural career!