Austin Peterson - President


Austin is the President of AIAS MN. He is currently a Junior in the Bachelor of Science in Architecture program at the University of Minnesota. He works in the College of Design Dean's Office as an Office Assistant and will be beginning an internship at Paul Meyer Architects for the summer. Along with AIAS Austin has been involved with Freedom by Design. While Architecture is Austin's primary interest he has also taken courses that range from sustainability, policy, and interdisciplinary design. Austin is most interested in the way design as an interdisciplinary field can interact and define the world we live in. When Austin isn't in Rapson Hall you can usually find him exploring the city of Minneapolis. 

Megan Gahlman - Vice President


As a native from Green Bay, Wisconsin, Megan started her journey at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse majoring in Physical Therapy. As it turns out, the medical field became a "hard pass", while architecture and design quickly became her passion. Transferring to the University of Minnesota was the best decision she ever made. She continues to give back to the school of Architecture by representing on the AIAS board as the Vice President. Her friendly demeanor and motivation will help her achieve a few goals for the semester. One of which is to re-connect all students within the school of architecture and cross-disciplines by creating a social platform in which students feel comfortable talking to each other about projects and life in hopes to inspire each other along the way. She is excited to continue her journey in architecture and learn as much as possible by taking risks in school. Outside of architecture, Megan's enjoys skiing, hiking, watching criminal minds, and frisbee golfing. 

Julia Luke - Secretary


Julia is the secretary for AIAS and is looking forward to her junior year in the B.S. architecture program. After growing up in a small town in rural Minnesota, Julia has fallen in love with life in the big city and all the opportunities it holds as she dives into the world of design. She’s known she’s wanted to do architecture since childhood, and since starting school has also become interested in advocacy for sustainability in the built environment. As an AIAS board member, Julia looks forward to becoming a voice for the student population and creating an equal and safe environment for all students across the architecture school. Julia can usually be found in the studio or just across the courtyard behind the desk at the architecture library, but outside of Rapson, she loves to spend time with her friends exploring the city, relaxing in hammocks, or watching The Office.

Rachel Kadidlo - Treasurer


Rachel Kadidlo grew up just across the river in Hudson, WI. She is entering her third year in the Bachelor of Science of Architecture program. Rachel is excited to join the leadership team as the treasurer and utilize her love for organizing and spreadsheets. Outside of class work, Rachel is a tour guide for potential incoming students. Rachel loves sharing knowledge and passion with other students, exciting her peers about their entry into the design community. Rachel’s interests have centered around aviation and healthcare architecture. In the few hours she is not at Rapson Hall, Rachel enjoys running, swimming, drinking coffee and discovering all the beautiful areas of Minneapolis with her roommate, Secretary Julia Luke.

Maria Berg - Membership Committee Chair


Maria is the Membershiop Committee Chair of AIAS. She recently completed her first year in the School of Architecture with plans to continue with the B.S. program. Prior to the University of Minnesota, she studied Geographic Information Science at the Duluth campus for two years before making the transfer to pursue architecture. Outside of school, Maria enjoys running, skiing, and touring Frank Lloyd Wright homes.

Ray Heikkila - Professional Committee Chair


Ray Heikkila is a junior in the Bachelor of Science in Architecture at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Ray grew up and attended grade school in Delano, Minnesota, a small-town west of Minneapolis. Many of the places Heikkila engaged with as a child inspired him to pursue architecture; being around his family's serene cabin in Northern Minnesota and watching Lord of the Rings motivated him to create rich experiences like these through sketching drew him to design at an architectural level. Beyond architecture, Heikkila is passionate about life in general and all other areas of design- constantly inspired by things like clothing, music, furniture, nature, photography, and how thinking between these different media inspire his architectural endeavors. His love and respect for nature also keeps him thinking about how community living can further integrate sustainable initiatives and healthier environments moving into the future. Ray is always open for a good conversation whether he is inside or outside of the studio!

Noah Suchy - Public Relations Committee Chair


Noah is a junior in the Bachelor of Science in Architecture program at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Noah grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and moved to Minneapolis for college. Noah is interested in the intersection of practicality and design that the field of architecture involves, and is excited to work for AIAS this school year. Outside of architecture, Noah is minoring in German, and loves walking the city and going to movies.

Emily Dam - Events Committee Chair


Emily is the Events Coordinator Committee Chair for AIAS. She is in the second year in the BS program and plans on minoring in Asian American Studies. She has been interested in architecture since childhood and loves seeing the different styles from around the world! She believes that architecture has the ability to tell stories and reclaim identities, while also serving a functional purpose. Outside of school, she is a lion dancer and ASPIRE mentor through the Asian Pacific American Resource Center!

Erin Kindell - Student Licensing Advisor


Erin Kindell is in her third and final year of the Master of Architecture program and is an AXP Student Licensing Advisor. She is particularly interested in the social and historical dimensions of architecture, the design of public space, and the connection of architecture and infrastructure. She enjoys learning about work by women architects and advocates for a more diverse profession in the future. She is also an organizing member of the Women in Architecture Student Organization and works at Kodet Architectural Group.

MacKenzie Kusler - Student Licensing Advisor 


MacKenzie is in her 3rd year of the Master of Architecture program and is one of our AXP Student Licensing Advisors who acts as s resource for any questions pertaining to AXP, grad school or internships. She is also involved in the Women in Architecture Student Organization (WIASO), 1:1 Podcast and is currently an Architectural Intern at Ryan Companies.

Ben Dosch - Graduate Student Representative

Cassandra Hansen - BDA Student Representative

Josephine Howell - BDA Student Representative

Elyssia Nguyen - PreArch Student Representative


Charlie Kuok - Director


Charlie is currently our Freedom By Design director. He came from Macau SAR and like meeting people from different backgrounds. He is grateful to be parts of FBD, as it gives him the chance to give back to the community with what he learned in school. Within architecture, he loves approaching a problem conceptually and always try to do thing differently. He loves to use colors in his design. Besides architecture, he likes to solve calculus problems for fun, it gives him peace.

Nathan Novotny - PR/Historian/Secretary


Nathan is currently a Junior in the Bachelor of Design in Architecture program at the University of Minnesota. Having grown up in Stillwater, Minnesota, he garnered a love for beautifully historic architecture from a young age. He's interested in a wide range of design disciplines, such as UX Design, Product Design, Photo & Video Editing, and of course; Architecture. He enjoys helping others, and together with his passion for design, has the pleasure of doing both in Freedom by Design. Away from architecture, Nathan enjoys biking, hiking, cooking, watching sports, and catching up on GoT episodes.

Vanessa Shimada - Treasurer


Vanessa is a junior in the Bachelor of Science in Architecture. She grew up in a small town in Brazil, moved to Sao Paulo for high school and then moved to Minnesota for college. She loves travelling, getting to know people from different backgrounds, and sharing her experience and culture with those interested. She really enjoys being able to help others and gain hands-on experience with Freedom By Design, and she is excited to be part of board as treasurer. Although architecture is Vanessa’s passion, she enjoys exploring a variety of areas and has taken courses in fields such as sociology, horticulture and landscape architecture.Outside of Rapson, Vanessa can be found behind the desk the Recwell, and hanging out with her friends around the city.

Tristan Trejo - Project Manager