Published: June 27, 2022
AJ Alkhamee

Name: AJ Alkhamees
Hometown: Kuwait City, Kuwait
Major: BS in Architectural Engineering
Year: Senior

A 7 year old with their dad walked into a grocery store in 2007. The dad comes out with a handful of groceries. The 7 year old, AJ Alkhamees, comes out with a 3-1 LEGO Creator Set.

Growing up, I was abnormally obsessed with Legos. It was something that slowly sparked my love for building things with my own creativity, whether with an instruction manual or using my own creativity. It wasn’t until I bought my first LEGO Architecture set that I knew I loved working with buildings.

Living in Kuwait, I would constantly see new high rise buildings being built from the ground up.

“I wonder how that building is supported, given how tall it is?” was one of the first questions I asked myself whenever I drove past the Al-Hamra Tower, the tallest building in Kuwait. Constantly questioning different design decisions made by the engineers behind those high-rise buildings made me realize my love for architectural engineering.

Having uncles and aunts in medicine and dentistry forced me to think that I needed to follow their footsteps. Following that thought ingrained in me, I realized architectural engineers are doctors and buildings are their patients. Electrical, mechanical and structural are some of the components that make up the bones, flesh and blood of our patient.

Having chosen this major and going into my last two semesters in it made me realize how beautiful building systems really are.

From initially enjoying classes like HVAC Design and Illumination to wanting to seek a minor in energy engineering to further learn more about sustainable building design.

Having visited Boulder for a few weeks whilst on my gap year after high school, I began to notice how CU Boulder is a very welcoming space to those willing to work and try to better themselves academically.

Being one of the only colleges that has an Architectural Engineering program, I took a leap and only applied to CU Boulder. Three years later, I am continuing to take advantage of the opportunities that are available through the Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering. Knowing that I still have a lot to learn, I am completing my undergraduate degree in Architectural Engineering to eventually start and complete a Masters of Science in Building Systems Engineering through CEAE.