All posts by Amanda Malloy

2021 Architects Foundation Scholars Selected

Scholarships recognize and support diverse future leaders of the profession in equity, practice management and sustainability

WASHINGTON – The Architects Foundation today announced the recipients for four of its scholarship programs that support future leaders of the profession in equity, diversity, and sustainability.

The Architects Foundation is continuing to support the future of the architecture profession by recognizing and supporting scholars through an ever-expanding scholarship and grant program offering. Programs listed below represent the latest recipients of the Architects Foundation’s scholarship and grant programs.

2021 Diversity Advancement Scholarship
The Architects Foundation is continuing to support diversity in the architecture profession by awarding its Diversity Advancement Scholarship to 12 students entering architecture school.  Each of the students will receive $4,000 per year towards tuition for the next five years totaling $20,000 each. This year’s recipients are:

2021 Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship
The Architects Foundation is awarding the 2021 Payette Sho-Ping Chin Memorial Academic Scholarship to Brittney Sooksengdao. Sooksengdao, a student at Virginia Tech, will receive a $10,000 scholarship intended to support the education of women in architecture. She will also be mentored by an architect at Payette for the scholarship year. Sooksengdao is the sixth recipient of the scholarship, which honors late architect Sho-Ping Chin, FAIA, a long-time principal at Payette and a healthcare practice leader who was instrumental in defining and elevating the national discourse for women in design.

2021 a/e ProNet David W. Lakamp AIA Scholarship
The Architects Foundation is awarding the 2021 a/e ProNet David W. Lakamp AIA Scholarship to Alexandra Gottlin, University of Oregon, and Schola Eburuoh, Harvard Graduate School of Design. Each will receive $5,000 to be used towards tuition for demonstrating a strong interest in practice and risk management. The scholarship honors David W. Lakamp, who was a founder of a/e ProNet and a trusted advisor to the profession of architecture.

2021 Yann Weymouth Graduate Scholarship
The Architects Foundation is awarding the 2021 Yann Weymouth Graduate Scholarship to Josh Greene. Greene, a student at Yale University, will receive a $5,000 scholarship towards tuition for demonstrating an exemplary work focus of design that includes sustainability, resilience, wellness, and beauty. The scholarship honors practicing architect Yann Weymouth, FAIA, who will also mentor Greene.

2021 Grad Reflection: Melissa Smith

Congratulations to our 2021 graduates! Read reflections from our 2020-2021 AF/McAslan Fellow, Melissa Smith.

Melissa SmithI have struggled to write this story because it has been difficult to come to terms with the apparent end of my formal education. Although there are many adventures to be had, I cannot help but think back on everything the University of Kansas has given me. While I’m eager for my next journey, I think about my time at KU and worry about what I may lose as I move forward to gain new and enriching experiences.

I have been a student for the vast majority of my life. It has been a central aspect of my identity. Not only have I been a student, but I like to think I’ve been a pretty great one. Aside from high grades, I’ve gone above and beyond to win awards, do unexpected and creative things, complete research publications, lead clubs. earn certifications, and excel in internships. With this chapter closing, I’ve asked myself what could possibly replace this obnoxiously studious aspect of my personality. Of course, I intend to excel in the workplace as well, as I move to New Orleans to begin my architectural career with LRK, but I’m not sure anything could truly fill the void left by formal education. Now that I have some free time, though, as the late nights in studio end, I hope to spend it enriching my life in other ways. I’d love to rekindle my love for dance by taking some classes, I hope to continue advancing my skills in the kitchen, I intend to satisfy my need for world travel and cultural exchange, I can spend time reading, drawing, and painting, and most importantly I have more time to spend with the people I love. This brings me to the other difficult part of university life wrapping up and moving to a new city.

KU has not only offered me incredible educational opportunities – research, world travel, excellent professors, certification programs, extracurriculars, and the like – but it has been my home for five years in every sense of the word, and I am not necessarily looking forward to leaving. KU is where I met my best friends, worked under wonderful mentors, and made life-changing memories. While I have hope for the future and know I will experience more transformative events before it’s all said and done, I still fear losing the relationships and memories I have spent so long building. I hope that I can keep the friendships and memories I have while taking advantage of every new opportunity.

Now that I’ve secured my Master’s in Architecture from the University of Kansas, I’ll be working with LRK in New Orleans to design WELL-certified buildings and communities, and I look forward to putting my Health & Wellness and Historic Preservation certificates to work. I hope to use my studies in Copenhagen and elsewhere around the world to design more sustainably and beautifully. I’m eager to continue working toward licensure and hopefully earn some other certifications along the way, such as WELL and LEED. I’m also eager to wrap up my work with the Architects Foundation / John McAslan + Partners Fellowship this summer in Edinburgh, Scotland and to see how my work on the joint HDR / University of Kansas / University of Nebraska Lincoln publication “Rural Resolve: Imaging the Future Health and Wellbeing of Small Communities” may affect rural healthcare and design going forward.

Who’s to say where I may be in a year, or five years, or ten? But I’m excited to see where this next path takes me as I continue to embrace change and take advantage of opportunities, even if it means letting go of certain things I once held dear. So, here’s to the future and here’s to the class of 2021; we did it!

The Octagon to host digital exhibition on public art with CODAworx

WASHINGTON– The Octagon, the museum of the Architects Foundation, today announced the launch of a digital exhibition for CODAWorx’s 2020 awardees.

Through September, visitors will be able to explore award-winning projects celebrating excellence in the field of commissioned art.

The internationally acclaimed CODAawards celebrate the projects that most successfully integrate commissioned art into interior, architectural, or public spaces. The CODAawards program honors the individuals and the teams whose collective imaginations create the public and private spaces that inspire us every day.

The Octagon will also be hosting virtual lectures throughout the summer about award-winning projects that focus on diversity, social justice, and community engagement.

“CODAworx’s awardees elevate art and architecture by raising awareness about environmental and social issues, demonstrating the importance of innovation and creativity, contributing to healing and hospitality environments, and developing community engagement and pride,” said Marci Reed, Architects Foundation Executive Director.

“We are delighted bring the CODAawards exhibit into the digital arena while The Octagon remains closed to the public.”

Visit the exhibition today on the Architects Foundation website.


CODAworx provides a platform to celebrate design projects featuring commissioned artwork in interior, architectural, and public spaces. The CODAworx team is on a mission to transform every space in the world by making more great commissions happen. Since 2012, the site has been the online “Hub of the Commissioned Art Economy,” where anyone can showcase work, hire artists, and get hired. Visit

Sherwin-Williams donation to support diversity in architecture

WASHINGTON–  The Sherwin-Williams Company has made a permanent endowment to  the Architects Foundation to support a Diversity Advancement Scholarship.

Through their $150,000 gift, Sherwin-Williams will support a minority architecture student’s career path by funding their college experience with $20,000, to be distributed evenly over the course of up to five years.

“At Sherwin-Williams we are committed to advancing a culture of inclusion and equity, where our differences are welcomed, celebrated and appreciated,” said Yentil Rawlinson, vice president of inclusion, diversity and equity at Sherwin-Williams. “This endowment reflects our pledge to support the advancement of underrepresented students in their educational journey and our continued focus and commitment to inclusion, diversity and equity in our workforce, workplace and communities we serve.”

“Sherwin-Williams’ commitment to advancing equity, diversity and philanthropy in the architecture profession is an inspiration, especially for building product manufacturers across the country,” said Architects Foundation 2021 President R. Steven Lewis, FAIA. “We are committed to advancing these critical and long overdue pathways in the profession. It’s leadership from manufacturers like Sherwin-Williams that can help make progress a reality.”

The Architects Foundation annually runs an application process for Diversity Advancement scholars. Applications for the 2021-2022 academic year are under review and will be announced in late spring of 2021.

Learn more about donation and scholarship opportunities on the Architects Foundation website.


Founded in 1866, The Sherwin-Williams Company is a global leader in the manufacture, development, distribution, and sale of paints, coatings and related products to professional, industrial, commercial, and retail customers. Sherwin-Williams manufactures products under well-known brands such as Sherwin-Williams®, Valspar®, HGTV HOME® by Sherwin-Williams, Dutch Boy®, Krylon®, Minwax®, Thompson’s® Water Seal®, Cabot® and many more. With global headquarters in Cleveland, Ohio, Sherwin- Williams® branded products are sold exclusively through a chain of more than 4,900 company-operated stores and facilities, while the company’s other brands are sold through leading mass merchandisers, home centers, independent paint dealers, hardware stores, automotive retailers, and industrial distributors. The Sherwin-Williams Performance Coatings Group supplies a broad range of highly-engineered solutions for the construction, industrial, packaging and transportation markets in more than 120 countries around the world. For more information, visit

5 Examples Of Strategic Partnerships That Are Making An Impact During 2021 BHM & Beyond

Source: Digital Media Solutions

This year, Black History Month is hitting a little differently for a lot of people, and brands are responding accordingly. After a year of COVID-19, in which Black and Brown people were disproportionately impacted, and the racial justice uprisings in the summer of 2020, the expectation from consumers is that brands and retailers will take Black History Month more seriously. In lieu of one-off campaigns that can be perceived as performative, brands this year are aiming to create lasting impact by embracing partnerships and collaborations with Black creators, Black storytellers and nonprofits that amplify Black voices.

“As brands make plans to celebrate diverse communities through Black History Month and others, it’s important that they approach their campaigns with authenticity, empathy and cultural intelligence,” said Cassandra Blackburn, director of diversity, equity and inclusion at Sprout Social. “Center your campaign on advancing the mission and purpose of the celebration by seizing the opportunity to honor the accomplishments of Black Americans.”

1. Fireclay Tile X Architects Foundation 

Architects Foundation, a philanthropic organization which undertakes “philanthropic efforts that lay the foundation of architecture’s future, by attracting, inspiring and investing in new and diverse generations of architects who will create inclusive spaces and places of tomorrow” partnered with decor brand Fireclay Tile to promote more Black women in architecture. According to an Instagram post from Fireclay Tile, only “0.4% of all licensed architects in the U.S.” are Black women. Fireclay Tile teamed up with Architects Foundation to create a “Diversity Advancement Scholarship” that will be used specifically for Black women pursuing architecture.

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