Jason Cruz

Four years ago, I was faced with a decision that was daunting to me. I could either study at one of the top architecture schools in the Philippines, or I could choose to come to NYUAD.

Despite not having the major I wanted, something compelled me to choose the latter. It was a leap of trust into the unknown. At the time it was a decision full of uncertainty, but I had told myself that I still wanted to pursue architecture, despite how impossible it seemed.

I could never have predicted what would happen next.

NYUAD ended up becoming a place where things can happen. I was able to find opportunities that allowed me to travel and do meaningful work around the world, from Münster to Manhattan to Mumbai. I was able to make meaningful connections along the way, from friends to mentors and networking. I was able to learn a lot along the way, about civil engineering, about the world, and about myself.

It allowed me to pursue architecture in a way I never expected, through awards to build my first ever building, and a sculpture that’s now on permanent display in front of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Through NYUAD, I was able to leave my mark on Abu Dhabi. NYUAD is a place where things can happen, and where we can make things happen.

NYUAD Class of 2024 Jason Cruz's sculpture is now on permanent display in front of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.