“the knowledge and resources that our faculty, students and graduates provide to the world are needed now more than ever.”
Designing the Future
Rick M Archer III FAIA (B.ARCH. ‘79)
Principal, Overland Partners, San Antonio
Designing the Future Campaign Chair
The University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture presents Designing the Future, a campaign to support exceptional faculty and student projects, encourage bold ideas and solutions, enhance public knowledge and international dialogue, and increase service and scholarship. For over a century, we have built highly regarded programs, and we are making the world a better place to live. With your help, we can build on our success to drive what's next. The design and planning of livable, sustainable, and meaningful environments require a strong awareness of theory in practice. Teaching students how classroom knowledge translates into solutions is one of the most important things we can do, and perhaps one of the most difficult.
With continued support from an engaged, multi-disciplinary faculty, we can strengthen our evolving curriculum and continue to prepare the next generation of designers and planners to address the challenges of the future. Generating new ideas and possibilities is fundamental to both teaching and practice. We invest in experimental research projects that combine the best of traditional studio and classroom learning, empirical methods, and hands-on training.
Investments in research are essential to the relevance and success of the UT Austin School of Architecture for the next 100 years. To set the standard, we must examine new ways for design and planning to define space, drive sustainability, create shelter, and create life-enhancing futures. Often, the most important learning occurs beyond the classroom. Working directly with community organizations, policy makers, and experts, students learn to test their hypotheses and address challenging community issues.
With your help, we can continue to create new opportunities for students to apply practical research, planning, and design methods, which will help them become better professionals and members of society—and make the world a little better in the process. As architecture is informed by a confluence of ideas, it also informs and inspires other disciplines, organizations, policies, and individuals. By creating forums to share ideas about history and theory, we enlighten, engage, and enhance our communities—and create a new generation of thinkers who will turn ideas into action.
With your help, we can continue to bring thought-provoking ideas to the table and drive the dialogue, keeping architecture alive and setting the agenda for the future. As the world becomes increasingly interconnected, we must be aware of what is happening all around us in order to act locally with intelligence. At the same time, we must understand and celebrate the details that give character to a place.
Access to international opportunities is a critical—but costly— part of our mission. Giving students a global perspective helps them understand the role of architecture in the world and their place in society. Your support of study abroad programs, travel opportunities, collaborative projects, and international conferences will equip students to respond thoughtfully to the globalization of planning and design. The School of Architecture's library, archives, workshops, and media labs ensure the legacy of great ideas. Our architecturally significant buildings house rich special collections, extensive laboratories, and advanced fabrication facilities that enhance our program and its offerings.
However, maintaining these resources—and adapting them to new technologies—requires significant investment. We must ensure the longevity of our assets and enhance our ability to advance ideas in a digital world. Training our students to think broadly and work in teams, we encourage cooperative and holistic design and planning.
By funding meaningful student opportunities such as competitions, design projects, and travel, we help students connect with their peers, with practitioners, and with new experiences while providing the skills to help them tackle some of our world’s greatest urban challenges.
For more information, download What's Next [pdf].