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VCC drafting program a launchpad for innovative, sustainable architecture

Posted on October 9, 2019

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Left to right: VCC alumni Kevin Li, Curtis Krahn, Jacob Dobrinsky


Architectural design has changed a lot since Curtis Krahn attended VCC’s drafting program in 1982. "Houses are way more sophisticated now than when we started," he says. "What took four to five months to build now takes two years."

In a city with a limited housing supply and soaring real estate prices, however, smarter homebuilding is coming back in style.

Today, at his North Vancouver firm Synthesis Design, Curtis and his team are consistently working on ways to increase both productivity and sustainability in the industry. Recent projects include modifiable laneway houses, Passive House (ultra-low energy) designs, and new, time- and waste-saving modular construction techniques. 

After getting his drafting certificate from VCC, Curtis went on to earn an architecture degree from the University of Manitoba and then a master’s degree from the University of Oregon, eventually returning to B.C. and starting his own company. "VCC was an awesome stepping stone," he says.

Over the years, Curtis has stayed connected by hiring numerous VCC grads, speaking to classes, and serving on the Program Advisory Committee for VCC's Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) and Building Information Modelling (BIM) programs.

As our communities strive for a sustainable future, working together is more crucial than ever. It is VCC alumni and employers like Curtis who keep us on the cutting-edge, ensuring that students not only find jobs, but make an impact when they do.

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Synthesis Design MODCUBE

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Find out how far drafting has come and where it can take you. Lear more about VCC’s CAD and BIM (Drafting) programs at an upcoming info session or at our Experience VCC open house on Wednesday, Oct. 16.