Farah Naz Ahmad is #SDLivingTheDream:
Monday, July 13, 2020
Building Science Skills — and Communications, too!
For the latest in our #SDLivingTheDream series, you’ll meet a 2011 Build Challenge team member whose career has explored several angles of energy-efficient building: lighting retrofits, energy codes, and technical building standards for city government. And if you’ve ever done a search for Solar Decathlon content on social media, you’ve probably seen Farah’s posts — she is one of our biggest cheerleaders!
Name: Farah Naz Ahmad
Year participated in Solar Decathlon: 2011
University team: The City College of New York (Team New York)
Current organization / employer: New York City School Construction Authority
Current role: Architect, Sustainable Design
How did participation in the Solar Decathlon affect the trajectory of your career?
Engaging in design, construction and communications in the Decathlon encouraged me to expand upon my career as an architect. Sustainable design, standards development and application, and energy engineering are constant drivers of my work. I began my career in lighting retrofits resulting in massive energy savings. I transitioned into a buildings department energy code plans examiner, reviewing construction documents for compliance with ambitious building performance requirements. I currently work on technical standards and support for sustainable design in city government. I apply my knowledge in renewable energy technologies, resilient design, energy modeling, LEED criteria, building code mandates, and additional standards to projects.
Describe a work outcome, building project or other achievement you are most proud of and how (if) it relates to your experience with Solar Decathlon.
While serving as Team New York’s communications liaison, I exercised my love for writing in the form of journalism, guided project marketing, and developed public speaking skills. To this day, I enjoy connecting with different audiences, communicating both technical concepts and practical applications of water, energy, and materials conservation. This has transitioned into an educational campaign on a platform of my social media channels, through environmental journalism, and via advocacy work. The fundamentals of the Decathlon highlight the prominent role of the building industry in climate change and emissions reduction, and I will continue to raise awareness on industry collaboration.