What led you to Hubbell Hill?

One of my friends worked for Jim and told me about all of the amazing art he creates, so I decided to apply for an internship here for the summer.

What has your life path been up to this point?

I’m from Northeast Indiana. I thought I was going to be an engineer growing up, but decided to change my career to a design-focused area instead. I’m currently attending the University of Cincinnati in Cincinnati, Ohio, and I have one year left of school. I have worked in San Francisco and Los Angeles for my other co-ops.

What did you do before you started working here?

I have attended a couple mission trips focused on building houses and helping orphans. That’s where I received my liking of architecture. I have also done some volunteer work with Habitat for Humanity, Clean Up Cincinnati, and through Chi Omega Pi Alpha chapter.

Why do you think you are here?

I haven’t really figured out why I’m here, but I believe everything happens for a reason. I’ve grown a lot this summer as a person and San Diego has been really good for me. I’ve also learned quite a bit in design since I’ve been working for Jim.

What is something you’ve learned since being here? (What is your favorite part of being here?)

I’ve learned how to work with my hands more – everything from welding to construction to stained glass. My favorite part of being here is I’m out in nature the entire day working with natural objects and the earth.

What is your passion?

My passion lies in design, more specifically architecture. I also enjoy helping people, and eventually I want to be designing and building for people who cannot afford to have their own houses. My dream job is to be traveling and building architecture and teaching people how to build so they can provide for themselves.

Is there anything you’ve learned from being on the hill or with Jim that you hope to carry with you?

Over the course of the last few weeks, I’ve learned how to be patient. I’ve learned not everyone works or learns at the same pace as me and I shouldn’t rush others.

What is your interpretation of beauty?

I think beauty is something found within. I don’t look at beauty as an outward appearance. Traits like kindness, caring, and helping are beauty to me.



Sarah picture.jpg

What led you to Hubbell Hill?

I was working with a professor on my portfolio my junior year, and she had previously taught in San Diego and would bring her students to the Hubbell Hill to see the property. Because of my interests and portfolio, she knew I would love Jim and his team’s work. She gave me his number, and I visited last January and loved it! I had never been in a place like this before and thought it was really special. I had already accepted a job to work in San Francisco on a two year contract after I graduated doing something I wasn’t passionate about, and I knew that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, so I decided to come work here at the Hubbells for a little bit and figure out what I was doing with my life instead. I was fortunate enough that when I called and asked if they would hire me, they said yes. So thank you for that! I have only been here for a couple weeks, but I have loved my time here.

What has your life path been up to this point?

I grew up in Northwest Indiana, about an hour outside of Chicago. My entire family is from Chicago, so it was great growing up with all my cousins and my little brother. I loved my art classes the most and ran and swam throughout high school, and decided two years into my high school that I wanted to go to a boarding school an hour away. My mom started working there so I could afford to go, and I got some financial aid and scholarships. I think I wanted to go because I loved the idea of living with a lot of people my age. In retrospect, it was a special place because we basically got to help raise each other as young adults. I loved the community there and taught water ski, tennis, and swimming lessons for a couple summers after that. I went to college in Oxford, Ohio, which is 45 minutes from Cincinnati, and completed my degree for Interior Design and European Area studies.

What did you do before you started working here?

Some of my favorite times were volunteering with elementary and high school kids on their art projects for a couple years. I was really involved in our architecture and design department, so I really value having had such a tight knit community. My favorite classes in college were design history, anthropology, and European history, and gender studies. During my junior year, I studied in London and Luxembourg, which was amazing. I worked at different restaurants when I was back in Oxford. I graduated in May and moved to Ramona in June to work for the Hubbells.

Why do you think you are here? In terms of growth or what is getting done with Hubbell?

I came here because when I visited back in January, I loved it! I thought it was a really good start after college because I wanted to be able to learn from Jim and all the employees here because they all know so much. I get to work outside almost all day and learn specific tasks I never thought I’d be able to learn.

What is something you’ve learned? What is your favorite part?

Since I’ve started my time at Hubbell Hill, I’ve learned that I enjoy doing many different tasks throughout the day instead of sitting in a cubicle, and my favorite parts have been learning how to cut stained glass, weld, and shape metal.

What is your passion?

I’m most passionate about women’s health and how to help others that can’t help themselves, whether it’s with their health or with their homes.

Is there anything you’ve learned from being on the hill or with Jim that you hope to carry with you?

Something I’ve learned on the hill and hope to carry with me is Jim’s patience and his willingness to teach anyone anything. People here are so patient and kind and willing to answer all my endless questions. I’ve also learned that I don’t necessarily need to always know what my next step in life is.

What is your definition of beauty?

I would say that beauty is anything you love no matter what it is and anything that makes you truly happy.





Intern Architect

What led you to Hubbell Hill?

Ever since I started to pursue architecture as a profession I’ve tried to seek out the best mentors possible. When I saw Jim’s work I knew immediately that it was a unique opportunity and that there would be a wealth of knowledge to learn from.

What has your life path been up until this point?

I’m originally from the Cincinnati area. My family owns and operates an outdoor recreation business so I have been raised with a love for nature and the outdoors. I started becoming interested in architecture at a young age when I would spend time at my family’s eco-lodge in Costa Rica. Since then I’ve been interested in green architecture and off-the-grid environments. The University of Cincinnati DAAP program provides many internship opportunities, so far I’ve worked in Miami, Florida on high end residential projects and here at the Hubbell Studio.

What did you do before you started working here?

I’ve worked at my family’s business since a young age, it’s been a wonderful experience being able to work with friends and family. Earlier this year I took an internship position at Choeff Levy Fischman in Miami. I never thought I’d have an opportunity to work on 40 million dollar homes while I’m still in college. It was a great experience and I was invited back, however I would like to get as diverse experience as possible while still in my undergrad program.

Why do you think you are here?

I think if you’re following your true life path and trying to reach a certain goal the right experiences will find you. In this case I get the sense I’m exactly where I should be.

What’s something you’ve learned since being here?

Jim’s work is very inspirational, it’s hard to describe the feeling that the organic forms and spaces generate within you but I believe it’s a much closer relationship to nature. It’s beautiful how building something by hand is permanently inscribed with your own unique artistic quality.

What is your passion?

Architecture is a major passion, however the environment and nature is even more important to me. I want to do what I can do blend these together in a symbiotic relationship and help the world move toward a more sustainable future.

Is there anything you’ve learned from being on the hill or with Jim that you hope to carry with you?

Yes, after being here only two weeks I’d like to take everything with me that I’ve learned so far. There is so much detail in Jim’s work it’s hard not to take away something of value even if only experiencing it for a brief period. If I had to choose one quality it would be his tenacity to continue to create and inspire others.

What is your interpretation of beauty?

I believe the saying “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. It cannot be judged objectively; as each individual is unique, so is their perception of beauty.

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You can find other interviews of Milenko here, here, and here!