Creative Windows & Doors, Marvin Windows create opportunities for architecture students

January 24th, 2013 Comments Off on Creative Windows & Doors, Marvin Windows create opportunities for architecture students

Sara Silvestri, the 2011 scholarship winner, attended Ghost Lab 13 in Nova Scotia.

The Creative Windows & Doors/Marvin Windows Fifth-Year Award was established in 2004 by Eddie Rives, owner of Creative Windows & Doors, and Marvin Schexnider and J.E. VanNatta, representatives for Marvin Windows and Doors.

Since then, the scholarship has supported student participation in the annual Ghost Summer Research Lab. Ghost is the research lab of Brian MacKay-Lyons, architect and professor at Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Architecture. The two-week summer program is offered to architects, students and professors and takes place on the ruins of a nearly 400-year-old village at the MacKay-Lyons farm on the Nova Scotia coast.

Each spring, the fifth-year student with the best final project is chosen and announced as the winner of the $4,000 travel scholarship at the School of Architecture’s Recognition Day program in May.

Sara Silvestri received the award in 2011 for her thesis project which focused on the iterative process of making and designing. With the scholarship, she was able to attend Ghost Lab 13.  Ghost Lab is typically a two-week design/build internship, but Ghost 13 became a three-day international architecture conference. During the conference, renowned architects from all over came to present their work. The discussions were focused on craft, regionalism and community.

“It was a really inspiring series of lectures, and I was so lucky to participate,” said Silvestri. “They discussed things like designing responsibly and using local materials. What works in one city won’t necessarily work in another city.”

The alumna is now a junior architect at H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture LLC in Manhattan, N.Y. The firm focuses on the design of cultural spaces such as performing arts centers, theaters, libraries and museums; Silvestri says the work she has done has been rewarding.

“Design related topics that are important to me are definitely relevant here, and I believe it shows in our work,” she said. “Our spaces impact the communities they are designed for.”

Along with the travel scholarship, Creative Windows & Doors and Marvin Windows and Doors also established the Annual Marvin Field Trip that allows fifth-year architecture students to travel to the Marvin Windows and Doors’ door factory in Ripley, Tenn., to observe the door production process. The students also tour the town square to observe several buildings, including the county courthouse that has been updated using Marvin products.

Drawing by Sara Silvestri during Ghost Lab 13

Ghost Lab 13 scenery (photos courtesy of Sara Silvestri)

Ghost Lab 13 participants. (Sara Silvestri circled)

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