Rich believes a design education teaches the student the power of ESP: The student develops the ability to imagine increasingly intricate visions of a future world, while building the skills to represent it clearly enough to persuade others to join in the realization of their 'visions' as tangible built fact.
As Associate Vice President and Dean of Students at the Boston Architectural College, Rich uses his architecture training and his teaching experience to build studio culture and campus life. His office also represents and upholds the Campus Compact, the rules of the BAC community. Rich works daily with individual students in various roles: advisor, tutor, professional mentor, and advocate. He has a particular passion for introducing design fundamentals to beginners.
Rich teaches design studios, lecture courses, visual studies courses, historic preservation and history/theory workshops, and he has also been a thesis advisor and lead lecturer for the BAC's Summer Academy high school program. For the past eleven years Rich has co-directed the BAC’s summer travel program. They have traveled Paris, Florence, Madrid, and Rome.
Rich holds a Master in Architecture from Harvard University's Graduate School of Design where he received the Alpha Rho Chi Medal for leadership. His Bachelor of Arts is from Bennington College. He has twice been a MacDowell Fellow in Architecture and he has presented papers at forums as diverse as the Beginning Design conference, the Frank Lloyd Building Conservancy conference, and the Comparative Literature Department at the University of Oregon. He received the Ed Toomey Award for Student Advocacy for his "progressive vision for the Boston Architectural College and his commitment to both teaching and student development". Since 1996 Rich has also worked as a part-time design consultant for Elliott Associates Architects in Belmont, Massachusetts.
Alongside this work, often as an antidote to it, Rich is an artist, exploring drawing, watercolor painting, photography, and their possible intersections with designed space. We Talk in Pictures, his collaborative smartphone project with Liz Linder, explores 21st Century intersections of phones and cameras, messages and images.