Cotton District developer establishes workshop in classical architecture at Mississippi State

March 18th, 2014 Comments Off on Cotton District developer establishes workshop in classical architecture at Mississippi State

Dan Camp, founder and developer of the nationally recognized Cotton District development in Starkville, recently made a gift to establish an endowed fund to support a workshop in classical architecture. The gift is part of MSU’s current Infinite Impact Campaign, a $600 million comprehensive capital campaign.

The Dan and Gemma Camp Workshop in Classical Architecture will be an annual, multi-day workshop held at the Mississippi State University School of Architecture. The initial gift will be used to establish the first workshop next academic year, and Camp has pledged gifts over the next five years to establish an endowment to support future workshops in perpetuity.

The workshop will engage MSU students, practicing architects in the southeast region, and the Starkville community in classical architecture and the impact classical architecture has on the built, social and economic environments of communities – all things Camp is very passionate about.

“Classical studies is an expertise that only a couple of schools in the USA currently teach,” said Michael Berk, F.L. Crane Professor and director of the School of Architecture, “And this annual workshop is a way to enhance MSU’s curriculum and broaden the options for our students.”

The workshop will be run by the Institute of Classical Architecture and Art, a growing nonprofit organization with 15 chapters nationwide. The ICAA is dedicated to advancing the classical tradition in architecture, new urbanism and the arts through education, publication and advocacy.

“We are very excited by this opportunity to partner with MSU.  MSU joins a growing number of architecture schools that are enhancing the capabilities of their graduates by introducing them to the fundamentals of classical composition.  These lessons have the greatest impact on future careers when they are offered early,” said Mark Ferguson, chairman of the Board of the ICAA.

School of Architecture students that participate in the workshop will earn a certificate from the ICAA.

“Preservation issues along with an understanding of classical architecture are both significant elements in cities around the country, and particularly in towns around our state – certainly, concerns that most Mississippi architects will be addressing in their practice,” said Berk. “And this workshop will give MSU students an understanding  and a credential which will better position them as they move into the job market . . .  as well as help communities to make better connections with the past.”

The Dan and Gemma Camp Workshop in Classical Architecture will be the first partnership between the School of Architecture and the ICAA. Also, progress has been in the works for a couple of years to organize an official chapter in Mississippi, spearheaded by architect and 1987 graduate of the MSU School of Architecture, Tracy Ward.

“This joint academic venture with the ICAA and Dan Camp is an incredible opportunity for Mississippi State University,” said Berk, “And we look forward to our future partnership.”

Read the story on MSU’s website.

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