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Architecture and Design Principal Yanel de Angel Named Commencement Speaker

portrait of a woman

Wentworth Institute of Technology’s 2022 Spring Commencement keynote speaker is a trailblazer who has dedicated herself to enacting environmental and social change.  

As a principal of global architectural and design firm, Perkins&Will, Yanel de Angel, FAIA, is the first woman to lead the firm’s Boston studio. Appointed to the Managing Director role in 2021, Yanel brings strategic thinking, compassion, and design excellence to one of the firm’s largest studios.  

After Hurricanes Irma and María devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, and with the support of Perkins&Will, Yanel was empowered to effect change. Yanel led the formation of ResilientSEE, an alliance that provides long-term relief to communities through resilient planning and design. Ongoing projects range from interventions at the municipal to neighborhood level, and educational programs. ResilientSEE has expanded beyond Puerto Rico to other geographic locations providing climate adaptation strategies to communities. 

Yanel continues her focus on the firm’s clients – delivering complex projects and bringing a holistic design framework for problem solving. Passionate about community resilience, environmental sustainability, and construction performance, Yanel is an active member of the Firm’s Resilience Laboratory and this year is joining the Board of Directors. She served at the Firm’s Diversity Council, Executive Committee and was a founding member of the Project Delivery Board. Yanel is Vice President of Practice for the Boston Society of Architects/ AIA Board where she co-chairs the Women in Design Excellence Awards committee, and she co-founded the Women in Design mid-career mentoring committee. 

Yanel has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Design from the University of Puerto Rico School of Architecture, a master’s degree in Architecture from the Syracuse University School of Architecture, and a master’s degree in Design from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design with a concentration in History and Theory of Architecture. She has taught at Syracuse University, Maryland Institute College of Art, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, and Northeastern University.  

Yanel was elevated to the AIA College of Fellows in February 2020. Today she serves on the Advisory Boards of various institutions including PROTECHOS, the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Cultures, the Boston Society of Architects, Sociedad Latina of Boston, and the Syracuse University School of Architecture. Yanel is also the recipient of many prestigious awards for her academic and design work. 

Committed to her family, Yanel is a wife and mother. Professionally and personally, she has proudly collaborated with Wentworth for more than 10 years and continues to support the university through ongoing project work and through the support of Women@Wentworth.