Alert Click here for the latest updates on the COVID-19 policies and resources for the BAC community.More


BAC Student Profile: Rebecca Dejenie

Rebecca Dejenie

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 Rebecca Dejenie and share some of her artwork.

Name: Rebecca Dejenie
Hometown: I was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, but I grew up in Ethiopia, East-Timor, Australia, Mozambique, Cyprus, and Italy. Home is on the go so I consider myself a Third Culture Kid.
Program/Expected Graduation Date: Bachelor of Design Studies - Sustainable Building Technology, May 2021

How did your interest in design begin?

My interest in design began as a kid. I always liked drawing one or two point perspective buildings, but at that time, it was just a hobby. In summer 2014 I attended a pre-college course on architecture at the University of Pennsylvania. This course introduced me to what architecture is. This is also where I met like-minded individuals who wanted to pursue design. In summer 2016 I attended Nottingham Trent University (UK) for a pre-college course on design and architecture. These two courses helped me be sure that design was something I wanted to pursue in college. I am a creative individual and I love to help others when I get the chance. Design was my interest and I saw the possibility of helping others through design.

What made you want to study at the BAC?

I saw an opportunity to be part of a small design community. The Practice element that is embedded into the curriculum was the main reason I chose the BAC. As an international student I wouldn't be able to work, but with Practice I get to work (under the Curricular Practical Training (CPT) provision of the U.S. government immigration regulations) and build my experience as a designer.

What has your BAC experience been like?

My experience at the BAC has been very fitting for me. There are numerous international students and I love that because growing up I've been in international settings. Something that I love is the student to teacher ratio; I have two classes that are quite small and this allows me to have more one-on-one interaction with my professors. Lastly, I was not really expecting how, in college and at the BAC, there is a huge age difference among some of the other students in my classes. This is a really positive thing because these students have more experience than I do and so they help me learn new things from their perspectives.

What is your favorite thing about studying design in Boston?

There are a lot of things to do and see in Boston, and as a design student there is a lot of inspiration that comes from that.

Who is your favorite designer and why?

My favorite designer is Architect Mphethi Morojele who owns his own award-winning architecture studio called MMA Design Studio. He is my favorite designer because his design focuses on the ability to respond to and enhance the historical and emerging African conditions at different levels of human, social, cultural, artistic, and economic endeavors. I want to do the same thing, but in my country. I see Mphethi Morojele as my inspiration to pursue my dreams and goals for my future as a designer in Ethiopia.

How do you think design and being a designer can impact the world?

Being a designer is not always just about designing something; it is about understanding the area and the people who inhabit the surrounding space. Designers have the ability to raise emotions within individuals because of a designed space. A design impacts people and the world on a greater scale when the design is bettering the people that use it and spaces that surround it.

How do you intend to use design in your career?

I intend to use my knowledge in design in my country, Ethiopia. I want to go back to Ethiopia and work on the countryside and I want to create a sense of community through design to help develop the countryside together with the community. Therefore, the people who inhabit the spaces have everything they need and do not need to come to the capital city.

What are your dreams and goals for being a designer?

My dream and goal is to have my own firm in Ethiopia that focuses on sustainability and rural development. I would also like to open nonprofit orphanages in places around the capital city of Addis Ababa.

Painting Collage of a Building called Waverly Terrace

Painting Collage of a Building called Waverly Terrace

African Girl by Rebecca Dejenie

A young African girl with an afro represents all African people. Her hair is the shape of the African continent which represents that she is from the Africa and Africa is within us. The continent is divided with different colors which show the vibrancy and diversity of Africa. The continent is not divided the same way as in colonial times, so it shows that the borders today do not define our continent. The white line that drips down from the top shows that Africa is one.

Sunsets in Paris by Rebecca Dejenie

Sunsets in Paris