Skip to main content

This program has been cancelled. We apologize for the inconvenience.

$25 public (includes CAC admission)
$15 CAC members
GEMS World Academy, 350 E. South Water St.

The second phase of GEMS World Academy welcomes its first students later this year, completing a vertical campus on a unique urban site. Tour the state-of-the-art school wedged between Coast and Vista towers with project leads from bKL Architecture.

Standout features of the new Upper School include specialized science and design labs, a digital theater and editing suite, a 500-seat auditorium and dramatic common spaces, including a roof terrace and a double-height atrium with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the river and lake. Through the stacking of classrooms, resources and extracurricular spaces, GEMS Upper and Lower Schools are able to support a combined 2,100 students on a very small footprint in the heart of the city.

Program Speaker: Jonathan Meyer

Jonathan Meyer

Jonathan Meyer's portfolio of work has an emphasis on higher education projects, with an expertise in campus master planning and LEED Certification processes. He's played a critical role in the conceptual and schematic design phases of educational projects for both high schools and higher education facilities. Meyer earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Technology at Bowling Green State University and a Master of Architecture degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He's a LEED Accredited Professional as well as an adjunct faculty member at Robert Morris University in its I-Center program.

Program Speaker: Isaac Persley

Isaac Persley

Isaac Persley brings extensive experience in residential, hospitality and laboratory projects to bKL Architecture, with a portfolio of work that includes the University of North Carolina Genome Sciences Building, China Merchants Tower and Woods Park and the Mashreq Bank Headquarters Building. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Art and Design from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Master of Architecture from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He has taught and participated on architectural juries at the university level.

Program Speaker: Lynne Sorkin

Lynne Sorkin

As bKL Architecture's Education Practice Leader, Lynne Sorkin brings notable experience in the pre-K-12 and university market sectors. She was selected to act as the Board of Education’s direct agent during their $1.4 billion Modern Schools Across Chicago program, involving numerous new facilities seeking to achieve LEED Silver Ratings or higher. She's been on the Board of the Chicago AIA Foundation for more than eight years (and is the foundation’s immediate past president), as well as a member of Chicago Women in Architecture, previously serving as Lecture Series Chair and Foundation President.

Note:Ticket price includes entrance to the Chicago Architecture Center on the day of the event. View the CAC's hours.

Please review the latest COVID-19 Safety Policies.