John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design 
George Harvey Collegiate Institute  
Black Architects and Interior Designers Association
Black Students in Design
Toronto Strong Neighborhoods Strategy 
For Youth Initiative


Michael Piper is an Assistant Professor of urban design and architecture and director of the Master of Urban Design program at the University of Toronto. His research and teaching explore opportunities for speculative thinking within messy, real-life conditions of development and urbanization with the goal of producing new opportunities for collective life. This work foregrounds analysis of built form, development practices, and urban planning policy. Current projects include analysis and design projects for single family homes, proposals for reimagining the subdivision, and analysis of suburban arterial roads

Otto Ojo is a Toronto based architect and sessional lecturer at the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design. He holds a Bachelor of Environmental Studies with a specialization in urban design from the University of Waterloo’s School of Planning, and a Master of Architecture from the University of Toronto, where he focused on the provision of housing through the embodiment of biomimetic principles whilst leveraging vernacular construction methodologies. He has practiced at number of award-winning architecture firms in Canada and Spain.

Ojo is a co-founder of studiovol, an architecture and design firm focused on producing alternative and environmentally resilient constructs that utilize site specific authentic materials that contextually ground buildings and evoke phenomenological resonance.

His current research interests are at the confluence of design agency and equity; the conscious effort through the sculpting of the shared built environment to address and realign, perspectives, social injustice, and the proliferation of cultural bias.

What is Engage-Design-Build?

Engage-Design-Build is an experiential learning program for secondary school youth who are underrepresented in the design professions due to economic or racial barriers. Architecture and design play a pivotal role in shaping the built environment we all share. Our goal is to open pathways to careers in the these fields , and offer opportunities for community engagement and impact.  The programs seeks to inspire and encourage youth to utilize skills acquired from their school’s curriculum and apply them towards local community minded design projects.

Engage-Design-Build connects with multiple course streams, with the aim of creating collaborative cross curricular projects at multiple scales. We engage with the local community, speaking to multiple stakeholders to broker a dialogue between the school and the community , fostered through multiple field trips and youth participation in community events. This interchange inform and shape the student projects. 

For more information, reach out to us at

Engage - Design - Build
The John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design has partnered with the TDSB working with highschool youth to engage the community around their school, design, and build community oriented projects in their neighborhood! Our goal is to open pathways for underrepresented youths to a careers in architecture and design by applying technical design skills from their curriculum to a project that engages current events in their school’s neighborhood, i.e. helping youths see design in their daily lives.