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By Shaunitra Wisdom Posted February 2, 2015 Atlanta, GA
For the School of Architecture, the last week of January was dedicated to outreach, as Architecture faculty and staff introduced elementary and high school students to the profession.
The Charles R. Drew Charter School’s Design Career Day focuses solely on design careers in the STEAM fields, where everything from designing wedding cakes to designing nuclear reactors is fair game. On January 26, Architecture Professor George Johnston provided a question and answer session with third, fourth and fifth graders about the field of architecture and building design. On Monday, February 2 nd. Urban Design Professor Ellen Dunham-Jones and Architecture Professor Jason Brown attended the Senior Academy portion of the event, to speak with 8 th -12 th grade students about college and career opportunities in the fields of Architecture and Design.
The College of Architecture has a long-standing relationship with Drew Charter School, a predominantly African American K-12 institute, named “Georgia's 2012 Charter School of the Year.” With a federal grant in its 3rd year, as a partnership between the CoA and the Drew Teaching and Learning Team, the goal of this collaboration is to work with the Drew Administration and Middle School Teachers to bring design into the classroom in a way that improves students’ learning of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM), the basis of Drew’s
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, January 27 th. the School of Architecture partnered with the Speak Life Foundation, a non-profit that works with Atlanta Metro area high schools to help students prepare for life beyond graduation. Funded by the Governor’s Office, a component of Speak Life’s program is focused on increasing interest in the STEAM fields by students of color.
Forty students from Cobb County’s Pebblebrook High School gathered on the Georgia Tech campus to tour the Hinman Research Building, and to speak with Master of Architecture students about their experiences as Georgia Tech scholars and designers and the factors that led them to pursue a career in architecture. The high school students also met with the College’s recruitment and retention representative to learn more about scholarship opportunities, using their life experiences to make their personal essays stand out, and what Georgia Tech and other universities look for when selecting applicants. Finally, led by a group of Architecture graduate students, they engaged in a hands-on design project, that encouraged them to focus on sustainable business practices. By the end of the visit, many students who were previously unfamiliar with the field of architecture were able to envision themselves as possible future architects, and see how architecture directly impacts their daily lives.
To learn more about Drew Charter School, please visit www.drewcharterschool.org/
For more information on the Speak Life Foundation, please visit www.thespeaklifefoundation.org