Cramer readies architecture graduates for future

May 16th, 2014 Comments Off on Cramer readies architecture graduates for future

Story by Leah Barbour, Photos by Megan Bean | MSU Public Affairs

Mississippi State University’s spring 2014 architecture graduates are prepared to take on the challenges and reap the rewards of professional architects, according to a leading worldwide consultant for architectural firms.

James P. Cramer, president of the Washington, D.C.-based Design Futures Council, presented the annual Dr. William L. & Jean P. Giles Memorial Lecture on Friday [May 16] for the College of Architecture, Art and Design. At the School of Architecture’s annual Recognition Day, he explained that optimism about the future will be critical to the group of 27 MSU architecture graduates’ success.

“Your future in architecture has already started, and you’ve had a great start here a Mississippi State University,” said Cramer, also the chairman and CEO of Greenway Group Inc. “You are now professionals, and your careers are now beginning. What you do daily will contribute to the quality of our lives.”

Cramer said MSU’s reputable program has given the graduates the tools to be designers whose creations can change the world for the better. The institution features the only degree program in the Magnolia State leading to architecture licensure.

“Lead with courage. Don’t lose that energy; don’t lose your vision to change the world,” Cramer emphasized. “You’re a graduate of Mississippi State University, and you have what it takes.”

He offered several tips to the graduates. The founding editor and publisher of DesignIntelligence encouraged them to stay serious about both their business and their profession, and he told them to be philosophical about their own lives.

“Put innovation first on your agenda for your clients; this makes high performance possible,” Cramer said. “I encourage you to prove your value and measure everything as part of the designs you create. The value you create is going to last for decades.”

On behalf of the Design Futures Council, Cramer presented each of the graduates his book, “How Firms Succeed: A Field Guide to Management Solutions,” which he co-wrote with Scott Simpson and published through Greenway Communications in 2004.

The book will help the graduates as they begin to navigate the world of business because “good designers run good businesses,” he said.

After Cramer spoke, spring 2014 graduates were recognized and presented with awards. Recognized graduates included, by hometown:

GULFPORT–Jordan Leigh Gill received the Tau Sigma Delta Bronze Medal. The medal is presented by the members of TSD to the student whose thesis project has expanded the students’ insight and awareness of architecture. She is the daughter of Stan and Cindy Gill.

HOOVER, Ala.–Michael Thomas McKinney “Mack” Braden received the Creative Windows & Doors/Marvin Window Traveling Fellowship, a $2,000 traveling award. Braden also received the Alpha Rho Chi Medal in recognition of his leadership, service and professional merit in MSU’s School of Architecture. He is the son of Emmett and Carol Braden.

HUEYTOWN, Ala.–Kelsey “Taylor” Keefer received the Architectural Research Centers Consortium King Award in recognition of her innovation, integrity and scholarship in architectural and/or environmental design research. She is the daughter Herbert and Jerri Keefer.

JACKSON–Tyler P. Bauman received the American Institute of Architects Henry Adams Certificate, the runner-up award for general excellence in architecture throughout the course of study. He is the son of Michael and Babb Bauman.

LAUREL–Chance Anthony Stokes received the Jurists Award in recognition of his personal growth as a designer and his contributions to the fifth-year design studio. He is the son of Hubert and Gwen Stokes.

Michael L. McKinnon received the Jurists Award in recognition of his personal growth as a designer and his contributions to the fifth-year design studio. He is the son of Donald and Karen McKinnon.

MONTGOMERY, Texas–Danielle Alyssa Glass received the Academic Achievement Award because she completed her architecture studies at MSU with the highest cumulative GPA in the class. Glass also received the American Institute of Architects Henry Adams Medal, the top award presented to a graduating student. The medal marks general excellence in architecture throughout the course of study. She is the daughter of Kevin and Debbie Glass.

PETAL–Chelsea Marie Pierce received a Jurists Award in recognition of her personal growth as a designer and for her contribution to the fifth-year design studio. She is the daughter of Ronnie and Angela Pierce.

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