BAC Student Profile: Kyle Bernard

Kyle Bernard

The BAC welcomes students from all over the world to study architecture and design. Each month, we introduce you to a BAC student to learn more about their BAC experience, how their interest in design began, which architects and designers inspire them, and more. This month, we introduce you to Kyle Bernard.

Name: Kyle Bernard
Hometown: Huntington Beach, CA
Program/Expected Graduation Date: Master of Design Studies in Historic Preservation

How did your interest in historic preservation begin? What made you want to study at the BAC?

I was preparing to apply to law schools when I realized I had been daydreaming about being in my basement workshop, building bad furniture. Instead of prepping for the LSAT, I applied and was accepted to the North Bennet Street School (NBSS) where I studied Preservation Carpentry. It was at NBSS that my passion for preservation flourished as I was classically trained in traditional building alongside skilled craftsmen. After my hands-on training, I wanted to pursue historic preservation in a more academic setting and found the BAC offering the perfect balance of a remote and intensive on-campus program.

What has your BAC experience been like?

I have had a great time at BAC meeting practicing professionals both in other students and my instructors. It's fantastic to be able to talk to a group of people who share the same passion about historic buildings.

During your annual intensives, where you and your classmates come to Boston for a week, what is your favorite thing about studying historic preservation in Boston?

The city of Boston is a treasure trove of all things historic, including the architecture. It's amazing to be able to walk through the city and see prime examples of architectural titans from Henry Hobson Richardson to I.M. Pei.

Who is your favorite designer and why?

Gustav Stickley was a giant of the American Craftsman movement in both furniture and architecture that I greatly admire. His style focuses on the process of building in the final product by showcasing the simplicity of natural material and hand cut joinery.

What accomplishment in historic preservation do you feel has been most effective?

Any historic place that a person walks into and finds themselves looking up in wonder is an effective accomplishment of historic preservation.

How can historic preservation positively affect the world in which we live?

The greenest house is the house already built. Historic preservation doesn't mean that we turn every historic home into a museum, but rather find new ways to use old buildings.

What are your historic preservation dreams and goals?

I'd love to be able to fully restore a historic home for my wife and I to grow old in.

Kyle Bernard fitting a replacement log at Home Place 1850s Working Farm at Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, TN

Kyle Bernard (left) fitting a replacement log at Home Place 1850s Working Farm at Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, TN

Pairing down a tenon for a timber frame repair at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, KY

Pairing down a tenon for a timber frame repair at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, KY

Teaching volunteers about cutting joinery into a sill log for the corn crib at Home Place 1850s Working Farm, Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, TN

Kyle (second from left) teaches volunteers about cutting joinery into a sill log for the corn crib at Home Place 1850s Working Farm, Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, TN

All images courtesy of Kyle Bernard