Matthew Fochs grew up in the small town of Slinger in rural, south-eastern Wisconsin. As a child, Matt could be found drawing or building something with thousands of his LEGOs - separated and organized by color and size of course. His decision to attend a private engineering college soon lead to a better understanding that above all, Matt enjoys interacting with people. Four years and nearly 230 credit hours later, Matt received his Bachelor of Science in Architecture Design from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
During his time at UWM, Matt was always active in something. He served on numerous committees within the School of Architecture, participated in six national design competitions, volunteered at the school’s Design Co-op, mentored four design students, helped run the university’s AIAS Chapter and served two years on the AIA Wisconsin Board of Directors. All of this was in addition to his studies in both the Architecture School, the School of Education and declaring minors in Art History, Math and Physics. Design always served as the creative outlet that let him stay grounded while releasing the countless ideas running through his head.
Upon graduating cum laude, Matt was elected to serve as the 49th National Vice President of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS). His year in office included visits to nearly 70 schools of architecture in four countries, and gave him the opportunity to serve on the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) Board of Directors, on numerous committees of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the education committee of the National Council of Architecture Registration Boards (NCARB), and two accreditation teams for the National Architecture Accrediting Board (NAAB). Other speaking engagements took him to conferences in Nova Scotia, Bath,London and Monterrey.
Trying to take what was learned in that year, Matt went on to work for two different architecture firms in his home state. While working with clients still excited Matt, his travels and experiences sparked an appreciation and understanding for many different cultures of design and design education. After the opportunity was presented for Matt to take an active role in managing and overseeing the AIAS Freedom by Design Program, a 14 foot UHaul was packed and again he headed to Washington, DC. Over the past three years Matt has been blessed to work with architecture students and professionals on the issue of accessible housing for elderly and persons with disabilities. Working passionately with people to get design in the hands of all people no matter their net worth or physical ability, Matt has come to realize the truth that he already new as a kid growing up in rural Wisconsin – Design is what you feel. Design is what you see. Most of all, Design is What You Do.