Zoe Ciolfi PC '12
Zoe Ciolfi

I came to NBSS after high school. In high school I painted, drew and was extremely interested in international relations.

In my last year, I was awarded a grant to paint a mural which I researched and designed. It depicted the journal kept by Mary Rowlandson, a white captive during King Philip's war. It currently hangs in Wachusett Regional High School in Holden, Massachusetts.

Two experiences, in particular, drew me to the field of Preservation Carpentry. In my third year of high school, I went with some other students to New Orleans with Habitat for Humanity to help rebuild what Katrina took down. We were put on a little carpentry crew of old salty guys and migrant workers. For the two weeks we worked with them, I found a new concept of happiness. After high school, I moved to Germany and, in my travels, discovered the city of Dresden. It is a place of mythical beauty with many architectural layers. Dresden made me want to save old buildings and crumbling things; it was also in Dresden that I found the only person who talked openly about the war with me. I recommend you visit - it is sad, but very worth the trip.

There were a collection of reasons I choose to attend NBSS. I couldn't imagine myself in a traditional school setting for four more years. I was also too proud for art school and it didn't fulfill enough of a functional aspect for me. I knew there was an answer for all the abandoned shacks in America and, while I don't have it yet, I am much closer.

There were a collection of reasons I choose to attend NBSS. I couldn't imagine myself in a traditional school setting for four more years. I was also too proud for art school and it didn't fulfill enough of a functional aspect for me. I knew there was an answer for all the abandoned shacks in America and, while I don't have it yet, I am much closer.

When I'm not at work, I listen to records, read, write and draw on anything I can get my hands on. I work with children when I can and I travel to Portsmouth incessantly. Portsmouth is where I am happiest to continue learning about architecture. I enjoy Boston's alternative culture, visit museums, arboretums and cemeteries with anyone willing. I also take on the occasional work commission and odd job. I lived with a few of my classmates while in school, and I constantly learned from them. They have been essential to my time here - in both the school and the city.

As a side note - I was the only girl in my Preservation Carpentry program, and I think it's ridiculous more don't apply. We need more women. Apply even if you don't think you'll get in, apply if you love the sound of it, apply if this is your interest. I would love to see a 50/50 gender ratio in the coming years.