Josh Grenier Wold CO EDU

Focal Point: Josh Grenier, AIA, M. ED

Meet Josh Grenier, an educational planner at Wold whose passion for learning spaces has been fueled by his experience as a high school teacher and further honed throughout his architectural career.

A Lincoln, Nebraska, native, he received his master’s degrees in both education and architecture at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Josh spent several years as a high school art teacher. When his school underwent a major addition and renovation, it sparked a curiosity about architecture. That spark led Josh to go back to school to become an architect and pursue his passion of giving back to the education community by planning and designing projects for districts across Colorado.

As an architect, Josh has forged strong partnerships with the communities in Wold’s network and has contributed to critical school projects across Colorado. At Wold, he enjoys helping people and educational communities solve problems to unlock their full potential.

How does your personal experience influence the planning and design of education environments?

I tap into my learnings and experiences as a high school teacher on a daily basis. That past experience helps as I seek to understand the needs and goals of our education clients, which is always the first step in the design process. Once we’ve helped our clients articulate their needs and goals, I leverage my background to aid them in envisioning the impacts our proposed designs will have on the daily lives of students, faculty and staff. Tapping into my previous experience as an educator is both invaluable and fun. It is very meaningful for me to help make a positive impact, and I feel fortunate when I am able to contribute.

If you weren't an architect, what would you be doing?

If I wasn’t an architect, I’d probably be struggling to come up with a way to make money that didn’t feel like just a job. I like to think I’d be playing in a band and making art. I enjoy tinkering, making things and simply exploring ideas, which is why I love architecture. I get paid to do the things I enjoy doing.

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How might your coworkers describe you?

I like to think my coworkers would call me creative, social and committed to maintaining high standards of quality.

Tell us about one of your personal and/or professional role models.

We are all gifted and flawed in our own unique ways. Lately, I find inspiration from my wife and my friends. They are all making their way through the challenges of raising and providing for families in a complex and challenging world, all while trying to hold on to their own values and sense of self.

What advice do you have for new professionals in the industry?

I would recommend asking questions, leading with curiosity, practicing patience, being open and working hard toward the things you believe in. There is plenty of time in life, so find a place that aligns with your values and stay. It takes many years to build anything meaningful.

What do you do in your spare time / what are some hobbies you enjoy?

I love to spend time with my family and play music with my friends. I also like gardening and watering the houseplants. I don’t read much anymore (somehow that has faded), but I’d like to come back to it.

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More About Josh

My wife, Rachael, and I have two daughters, Ida (10) and Nina (7). We enjoy spending time as a family watching Star Wars, playing board games and video games, running around in the yard together – regular family stuff. One of our favorite activities is listening to new music and singing together.

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What's a fun fact about yourself that many people may not know?

I was born on a military base next to Joshua Tree National Park, which is where I got my name.

What advice would you give to your 21-year-old self?

I would tell my younger self to be kind to yourself and to others and to keep doing what you think you need to do. It’s all going to be just fine.

To learn more about Josh Grenier, his experience and his insights, visit here. Our Focal Point series provides a behind-the-scenes look at the talented team members that bring our work to life.

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