Diversity Advancement Scholarship

Architecture is about enhancing the human experience by creating buildings that serve and strengthen communities. Since 1970, the Diversity Advancement Scholarship has been awarded to help build a pipeline of architects so that the profession better reflects the diverse communities they serve.

Architects Foundation is working to attract, inspire and invest in the next generation of the profession and we can help fund your college education with a multiyear scholarship of up to $20,000. On top of that we’ll also transform your career trajectory through our extensive network of alumni, mentors, and scholars.

$20,000 scholarship

Those selected as Diversity Advancement Scholars will join a select group of students who through imagination, commitment to excellence, and participation in a supportive network can change the landscape of the profession and future of the built environment. Eligible students must be a US citizen and be:

  • a high school student planning to enroll in a NAAB-accredited architecture degree program;
  • a rising second-year college student in a NAAB-accredited architecture degree program; or,
  • a technical school or community college student who has completed high school or its equivalent and intends to transfer to a NAAB-accredited architecture program.

NAAB-accredited degree programs may be a five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree, or a four-year pre-professional bachelor degree followed by a Master of Architecture degree. Scholarships may be renewed for up to 5 years (up to a $20,000 total award—multiple scholarships are available).

The Diversity Advancement Scholarship was created in 1970 with an initial grant from the Ford Foundation, after civil rights leader Whitney Young Jr. challenged architects in 1968 to create a more responsible and equitable field. Read the program report here.

Embracing diverse viewpoints and cultures in architecture is a valuable asset to the profession, and the Diversity Advancement Scholarship offers students with a passion for studying the discipline of architecture, an opportunity to successfully complete their studies no matter their color or where they come from.

Application process

Applications for the 2023-2024 academic year are closed. Want to apply for the award in the future? Sign up to receive notifications about the next application cycle opening.

Applicants must submit:

  • A comprehensive essay that tells us how you see the potential of architecture to improve communities and how this influences your passion for becoming an architect. Be sure to include examples of how your current involvement or past experiences and how you see the possibilities for shaping your path forward in service to society through architecture. (1,200 words)
  • A professional resume
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A portfolio (3-5 creative works, do not have to be architecture-specific)

View our frequently asked questions >

2024 Selection Committee
More information about the selection committee will be released. Please address letters of reference to the “2024 Selection Committee.”


Thank you to our scholarship sponsors!

Partner-funded scholars:
Curry Stone Foundation: Zuleika Baldeo
Custom Residential Architects Network, an AIA Knowledge Community: Omar Leon
Fireclay Tile: Oni Thornell and Gabriella Doe
Robert Ivy: Conrad Ontimara
RS&H: Cassius Palacio and Silvia Kim
Safdie Architects: Geremiah Tallas
Sherwin-Williams Company: Raven Mills and Justin Chappell



Curry Stone Foundation





Fireclay Tile