Thoughtful designs

Convocation grad profile: Shryonn Smardon, TYP alum

- May 29, 2012

Shyronn Smardon, masters in architecture grad. (Nick Pearce photo)
Shyronn Smardon, masters in architecture grad. (Nick Pearce photo)

Shyronn Smardon is graduating with a masters degree in Architecture, specializing in modern design. Of his personal architectural philosophy, Mr. Smardon opines, “I like simple design. Nothing unnecessary.”

Mr. Smardon took both his Bachelor of Environmental Design Studies and master’s degree at Dalhousie’s School of Architecture. Before that, the Halifax native enrolled in Dal’s College of Continuing Education’s unique Transition Year Program (TYP) to help him make the leap from high school to university. “It’s a program for black Nova Scotians and First Nations,” Mr. Smardon explains of TYP – the program fills academic gaps and offers a preview of university-level academics.

“It’s also to educate TYP students about black history and First Nations history… Before TYP, I really had no idea what university was. It was still very much an unknown in my family,” says Mr. Smardon, who calls the program “a stepping stone.” Of his choice to go into architecture after TYP, Mr. Smardon muses, “I think it’s something that was always in me… I don’t know where it came from… I didn’t know the profession of architecture at all, but I knew I liked thoughtful design.”

In his studies, Mr. Smardon realized that there was more going on behind the scenes than he guessed and discovered unexpected facets of his own mind. “Sometimes in university, you’re prepped to learn about one particular task… but for me, I learned much about myself and about my character.” Such discoveries include Mr. Smardon’s nascent interests in photography and product design, which he picked up while taking elective classes at NSCAD.

In his spare time, Mr. Smardon’s passion is travel. His upcoming itinerary includes New York, New Orleans, the Caribbean and, following graduation, a spell in Hawaii to celebrate with old friends. “I would travel every day if I could.” Now that he’s graduating, Mr. Smardon says, “I could be anywhere from designing a label to furniture to the next Empire State Building. I think it’s going to be one of those jobs I didn’t know existed.”

But, he adds playfully, “I don’t see myself behind a desk.”


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