CSTC to host Fat Tuesday Feast

February 25th, 2014 Comments Off on CSTC to host Fat Tuesday Feast

On March 4, current Enterprise Rose Fellows will visit the MSU School of Architecture to lead discussions and present their work and projects from around the United States.

Architecture students are encouraged to join in the discussions and learn about different paths to follow after graduation and what the Enterprise Rose Fellowship entails.

The presentations will start at 4 p.m. in the Robert and Freda Harrison Auditorium in Giles Hall. Afterward, all are invited to join the fellows for a Fat Tuesday Feast.

CSTC well represented at American Planning Association national conference

April 25th, 2013 Comments Off on CSTC well represented at American Planning Association national conference

John Poros presents on rural sustainability at the APA national conference in Chicago.

John Poros recently presented a session on his research on rural sustainability at the American Planning Association’s national conference. The conference was held on April 15th in Chicago, Ill.

Poros is the associate professor in the School of Architecture at Mississippi State and the director of Carl Small Town Center (CSTC), a nonprofit community design and outreach component of the School.

Poros’ session was attended by more than 200 participants and was selected as the Small Town and Rural Planning session for the year.

Leah Kemp also presented at the conference’s poster session.

The poster was titled “Baptist Town Neighborhood Revitalization.” Kemp serves as the assistant director of the CSTC and presented recent work the center has done to help the Greenwood neighborhood.

School of Architecture alumna Belinda Stewart sponsors internship for Carl Small Town Center

December 6th, 2012 Comments Off on School of Architecture alumna Belinda Stewart sponsors internship for Carl Small Town Center

Belinda Stewart, front, and her team of fourteen employees at Belinda Stewart Architects, PA, have the goal of helping small towns figure out how they can have a viable future.

Belinda Stewart didn’t know much about the field of architecture growing up.

“I didn’t even know how to spell it,” she laughed.

That all changed, however, when the then-Associate Dean of the School of Architecture at Mississippi Sate University, James F. Barker, paid a visit to Stewart’s high school in Eupora to explain what architecture was.

“It blew me away,” she said, explaining that she had always enjoyed traipsing around after her grandfather, a carpenter, and loved to hear about how areas – especially buildings – had changed over time.

So, Stewart decided to give architecture a try and enrolled at Mississippi State.

It was there that she discovered her true passion after an assignment she received from Dr. Michael Fazio, her professor of architecture history.

“He assigned a report to us to discover and research something you are excited about to do with historic architecture,” she said, “something you want to be ‘an expert in.’”

Stewart chose to define the early historic architecture and how buildings evolved in her home of Webster County.

“I think’s that’s what really fired me up with these small towns,” she said, explaining that she discovered many of the buildings in Webster County were pre-Civil War. “It’s amazing that those structures are still there. It was exciting to learn about them.”

Encouraged by her interest in historical architecture of small towns, Stewart did her fifth-year thesis project on the study of vernacular architecture – specifically looking at why buildings evolved the way they did and the impact this knowledge could have on current design.

“I think that was an incredible base for an architect – knowing why things evolved in this area,” she said. “It’s just a great base to have.”

In fact, Stewart, the founder of Belinda Stewart Architects, PA, said she would like to encourage more of that type of study at the School of Architecture and has established the Belinda Stewart Architects Internship to help.

“The School of Architecture is set in Mississippi – in the middle of incredible richness of design and architecture – a lot of which is in our small towns,” Stewart said. “Having the opportunity to know those structures and know why they evolved the way they did and why they were designed that way can make them a stronger architect. Whether they go on to practice that type of architecture or not, I think more and more people need to have the knowledge of what’s around them.”

Stewart’s gift will support the competitive hiring of a student to join the staff of the Carl Small Town Center. The internship will afford an outstanding architecture student the opportunity to engage in design research and outreach efforts on behalf of small towns throughout the state, while honing their own design skills and gaining professional experience.

“There is so much need for small communities in the state,” said Stewart. “The economic base is not there any more for so many of them, and the vision has kind of been lost because the town’s base has been lost. Our goal is to help towns relook at themselves and, more importantly, to learn to appreciate what they have … what makes them unique and what makes them special.

Stewart and her team of fourteen employees have the goal of helping small towns figure out how they can have a viable future.

“Our philosophy is there’s always a way, and it’s just about helping them find that way,” she said. “Those are the kind of tools I think would be incredibly powerful for an intern … to go into communities and learn how to help them find that way.”

Carl Small Town Center, Architecture students receive APA MS awards

October 17th, 2012 Comments Off on Carl Small Town Center, Architecture students receive APA MS awards

The Carl Small Town Center (CSTC) has received the Public Outreach Award from The Mississippi Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA MS). The center won the award for its MS Bypass Guidelines, which were published this year.

The Public Outreach award was one of only three awards given by the MS APA this year and is for an individual or program that uses information and education about the value of planning to create greater awareness among citizens and other segments of society.

Rachel McKinley and Zachary James, students in the School of Architecture, also received the Collaborative Project Award from APA MS. The award is for their work done in the CSTC’s CREATE Common Ground class last spring, which focused on revitalizing New Albany.

The Collaborative Project Award recognizes research, projects or other activities in which a student has worked collaboratively with practitioners/planners and/or faculty.

The awards will be accepted at the annual conference in Meridian next Friday, Oct. 26.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Creating Sense of Place: Collaborative, Sustainable & Innovative.”

Read the story by Leah Barbour | MSU University Relations

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