for Classical Architecture and Urbanism
the school's newest graduate program
emphasized through a new competition
the Stanley Hallet Sketchbook Award
finances an update to the facade
of the Edward M. Crough Center for Architectural Studies
Founded in 1911, the School of Architecture and Planning has grown from a small department housed in an unused McMahon Hall attic space to a school that offers students the opportunity to study and learn with renowned architects from around the world.
The primary Campaign objective for the school is to establish it as the leading institution in the country dedicated to the joint study of modernist and classical design, and to do so with sustainability and excellence as traits that bind the traditions together, melding them with the pursuit of beauty and transcendence.
“This is a way in which we really relate our program quite specifically to the mission of this University, because the Catholic Church has the largest existing stock of extraordinary classical buildings on earth,” said Dean Randall Ott, who retired as dean of the school in 2020 after 17 years in the position. “Our goal is to provide young architects who understand those buildings and can help sympathetically, historically preserve those buildings and can help in the addition of new buildings of this type sympathetic to the classical style.”
Another priority is the redesign of the Edward M. Crough Center for Architectural Studies, which houses the school and was built circa 1919 to serve as the University’s gymnasium. A refurbishment of the exterior is already underway, thanks to donor funding. Improvements include removing and replacing the old stucco exterior, power washing the rest of the building, and replacing the lighting, front doors, and the handrails on the front steps.
Finally, the school seeks to increase the number of annual donors supporting the School of Architecture’s unique mission, which Ott said is to help students understand how beautiful, built spaces in the environment impact humanity.
“We have a unique contribution that we as designers can make there. Yes, we are artists, but we also are technologists, we’re also energy professionals, we are planners, we are part-politicians, we are part-psychologists; we bring together all those aspects of human experience to synthesize them into what is the entire built environment. And this is the only place in America right now where a student, if they wish, can study how the divine, the natural environment and the built environment, reflected through culture, interface. It’s a unique offering.”
Ott has served as dean of the school since 2003. Mark Ferguson, partner of Ferguson & Shamamian Architects, L.L.P., in New York, has been appointed by President John Garvey as the next dean of the school. He will assume his new duties July 1, 2020. Ott will continue as a tenured faculty member after a yearlong sabbatical.
Seed funding launches Hallet Sketchbook Award
In 2017, Darrel Rippeteau, AIA, provided seed funding to launch the Stanley Hallet Sketchbook Award, named after a former dean who taught at Catholic University for more than 25 years. Rippeteau and Hallet believe that the ability to sketch is a fundamental skill for architects, who must be able to observe, reflect, and analyze at many different scales.
“Architects conceptualize and visualize the future through their ability to sketch out their ideas and present [them] to investors and developers in the marketplace. Sketch the future and succeed in your life’s work.”— Darrel Rippeteau, AIA
On July 1, 2020, Mark Ferguson will assume the duties of dean of the School of Architecture and Planning. Ferguson is a co-founder and partner of Ferguson & Shamamian Architects, L.L.P., an architectural firm in New York with built projects around the country and abroad.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Carnegie-Mellon University and a master’s in architecture from Princeton University. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), a founding member of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, and serves as director of the National Board of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art.
“I especially look forward to developing a curriculum in which Modern and Classical schools of thought are strengthened by an open, curious approach to ideas and buildings, both old and new, and that embrace the perennial need to nurture human lives through conservation and innovation. I can’t think of a better place to be part of that movement than at Catholic University.”— Mark Ferguson
The School of Architecture and Planning cultivates a holistic view of architecture, planning, and design so that future architects and planners can assume a personal responsibility for the beauty, equity, and wellbeing of the world.
Light the Way: The Campaign for Catholic University continues until May 2022. Learn about the school's priorities for the Campaign.