UTSA-Downtown Campus – Originally born in El Salvador, Nixon Maldonado was used to his small town with small buildings. When he moved to the United States, his views of towns and cities would change and his dream of becoming an architect would begin.
“Architecture, I believe, has the power to change a space and transform it into a place that will become essential for humanity,” said Maldonado.
Maldonado lived in El Salvador until the age of 12 when his family decided to move him to Texas to give him a brighter future.
“One of the memories that I remember is my grandma one time after school telling me, you need to move to the United States,” Maldonado said.
Once in the U.S., Maldonado saw something he had never seen before — skyscrapers.
When he became a student at UTSA, he focused his studies on architecture. He specifically would look at how architecture could uplift the human spirit. For his final project before graduation, he created a building that could help people who are blind or visually impaired move through spaces in a safe way.
“This building actually focuses on orientation and mobility, something that is not really taught so much in the architecture field,” said Maldonado.
While at UTSA, Maldonado was a member of the Klesse College of Engineering and Integrated Design, he also got to travel and participate in research projects.
“My journey here at UTSA has been one of the most valuable experiences that life has given me,” Maldonado said.
The graduate wants to go for his Master’s in Architecture in the future. Until then, he hopes to take what he’s learned from school back to El Salvador so he can help the country become a space of hope and inspiration.