Meet our Alumni: Michael Anderson (MArch '03, BPS '01)

Mike Anderson.

In addition to his professional success, Mike Anderson notes fatherhood as one of his proudest accomplishments. 

Published February 4, 2016 This content is archived.

  • Bachelors of Science, Architecture, 2001
  • Master of Architecture, 2003
  • Owner/Architect, Abstract Architecture PC
  • President-Elect, AIA Buffalo/WNY Chapter
  • Board Member, Roycroft Campus Corporation
  • Former college football and professional rugby player

My current role

"After graduating from UB I spent almost 11 years working for a Buffalo architecture firm. Two years ago I left to start my own firm, Abstract Architecture PC. As a small business, I have responsibilities ranging from architecture to day-to-day business operations. I’m also president-elect of the Buffalo/WNY chapter of the American Institute of Architects and on the board of directors for the Roycroft Campus Corporation."

My favorite accomplishments

“There are many accomplishments I value. Graduating and becoming an architect are high on that list. Completing the first project at my own practice was very exciting. I also get considerable satisfaction from public service, so being an active board member for two worthy organizations is also rewarding. And I’m very proud of my upcoming tenure as president of the local chapter of the AIA. From a personal perspective, the impending high school graduation of my oldest son is a favorite."

"I’m originally from New Zealand and came to the U.S. on an athletic scholarship – I played football at the University of Hawaii. When I relocated to Western New York, UB in general and the architecture school in particular seemed like the obvious choice. Both turned out to be a perfect fit. Beth Tauke was my admission counselor; she provided guidance and assistance throughout my time at UB and reinforced my thinking that UB was the place for me. The quality of the program and faculty kept me at UB for graduate school and keeps me involved with the school today."

How UB shaped my career

"UB opened my eyes during a formative time in my life. The college world of a student-athlete is very limited in focus. The architecture program provided me with a broader education and exposed me to many new ideas and skills. The wide variety of classes gave me a broad knowledge base, a range of analytical skills and multiple approaches to thinking and problem-solving. The long hours spent in studio, especially those all-nighters before final review, not only fostered friends but also made me appreciate the rewards of hard work.”

My life on campus

“I spent almost my entire time at UB on South Campus. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Hayes and Crosby halls although I can’t begin to count the number of hours spent in studio or class. My oldest son was a toddler at the time and an active participant in studio sessions. The friendships fostered over those years are more appreciated with time. When groups of us get together, the common theme of conversation is bewilderment as to why we weren’t kicked out for some of our antics.”

“Work hard, take advantage of every opportunity, and you will find results that are very rewarding.”

Why I stay connected

"I never intended to go to college but thanks to UB, I stumbled into a profession that is incredibly fulfilling. I’m forever grateful to the amazing faculty who helped me through UB. I find it hard to say no when asked to review student work or participate in an event. From a selfish perspective, I also like to see what current students are doing -- even if to only make sure our studio work was better!"

My best advice to students

“The program can be a real grind at times, but you only get out of it what you are willing to put in. Work hard, take advantage of every opportunity, and you will find results that are very rewarding.”