My brother has been working as an Architect for the past 4 years and specializes in Green and Sustainable building. Recently he and his wife decided to quit their jobs and take a sabbatical and engage in some amazing service projects. They will be spending a month in Mexico providing assistance to a family that they previously built a house for during a church mission trip and then the next month they will be in Arizona participating in the Red Feather project making a straw-bale house on a Native American reservation.
I recently read Penelope Trunk's article in Time titled, "What Gen Y Really Wants," which really made me think about my brother and sister-in-law's new adventure--they are Gen Yers. Penelope writes about how Gen Y wants to and values volunteering. My favorite part of the article is when she writes, "Taking time off to travel used to be a résumé red flag; today it's a learning experience." This was funny to me because we were all a bit skeptical at first as to why my brother and sister-in-law would quit their perfectly comfortable jobs and give up their apartment to do this work (although I shouldn't be the one to judge for I am quitting my comfortable job to start my PhD), as well as some family members weren't sure how this experience would help their careers. However, on my brother's last day of work his firm gave him the book, "Design Like You Give a Dam," which talks about all these humanitarian architecture projects all over the world, including the Red Feather project. My brother's coworkers and managers were excited about what he is doing and I know this service experience will make him a better architect!