Fall 2014 Graduate Travel Grants

Sam Fox School awards seven grants supporting research + creative activity

Posted by Shantana Stewart December 12, 2014


The Sam Fox School awarded seven Graduate Student Travel Grants for its fall 2014 cycle. The grants are earmarked to support travel related to students’ research and creative activity, including attendance at regional, national, and international conferences and symposia.

"These grants provide financial support for our graduate students to travel across the country—and even internationally—in pursuit of unique educational opportunities," said Carmon Colangelo, dean of the Sam Fox School. "It's particularly exciting that, for the fall cycle, our recipients represent all of our graduate programs, and are engaging with diverse topics that will advance their creative activity, research interests, and professional development."

Grant Recipients

- Emily Chen, MArch/MLA15, won the American Society of Landscape Architects' student Honor Award in spring 2014. Thanks to the travel grant, Chen—one of 21 student awards winners selected from more than 500 entries that represent 77 schools—was able to attend the ASLA's Annual Meeting & Expo November 21-24 in Denver, where she was recognized for her work. As part of the event, she presented her award-winning Migratory Lands Demonstration project, which explores different methods of land and water interaction along Alton, IL.

- Andrew Houston, MArch/MUD14, hopes to build a case for reusing what he calls "historic gems"—buildings made of stone—at a time when many are razed and replaced with glass. Houston traveled to New York November 11-15 to conduct research and show how restoration, reconstruction, and reuse strategies can preserve masonry buildings and reinterpret their use today. During his trip, he studied the Bowery Ballroom, Glasslands Gallery, Smack Mellon Gallery, and Terminal 5 buildings, which are good adaptive reuse models for St. Louis’ masonry.

- Sea Joung, MFA15, plans to visit Seoul, South Korea, this month to interview North Korean defectors who reside in South Korea. Joung will use this information as inspiration for future artistic endeavors. One of her projects, Smuggled Counter-Indoctrination, raises awareness about North Korea's rapidly changing consciousness. In it, one song sanctioned by North Korea’s government, titled Don't Ask My Name, and a second, South Korean song illegally imported to black markets of North Korea, titled What's Your Name?, play simultaneously through multiple sound transducers.

- Madeline Marak, MFA16, plans to photograph, sketch, and journal about nature and how culture shapes landscapes as she visits national parks in the great American West. Marak will leave St. Louis January 3, journeying on a path via the Amtrak Southwest Chief line that will allow her to see firsthand legendary landscapes that are both breathtaking and imbued with history.

"I specifically chose railway as my mode of transportation, because it allows me time to document, reflect, and piece together my observations from place to place," Marak said. This mode of transportation will also give her access to areas that are not visible from interstate highways. She will visit Bent's Old Fort in La Junta, CO, a former fur trading post; Bandelier near Santé Fe, NM, a thriving Pueblo community; and Yosemite National Park near San Jose, CA, home to iconic mountains, waterfalls, and valleys.

- Yvonne Osei, MFA16, will travel to three major Ghanaian cities this month—Accra, Cape Coast, and Kumasi—to investigate the impact of westernization on the country and the interrelationship between sub-Saharan Africa and African-American culture through interviews and the collection of evidential materials. She is particularly interested in the physicality of identity, its sociopolitical implications, and learning why people bleach their skin and perm their hair to alter their natural appearance. Ultimately, Osei hopes to collaborate with local residents to create artworks that highlight the concept of unnatural beauty and advocate for unification and global tolerance.

- Alex Ayres, MArch/MCM16, Zachary Reichert, MArch16, Corey Stinson, MArch16, and Garrett Vaughn, MArch16, used their travel grant to attend the 2014 American Institute of Architects Central States Regional Conference and participate in its Third Annual CSR Student Design Competition in Springfield, MO. The design competition challenged students to create a combination of a FEMA storm shelter and community-maker space during a 16-hour design charrette.

- Joshua Chan, MArch15, Emily Chen, MArch/MLA15, Gabee Cho, MArch14, and Rolando Lopez Lopez, MArch15, also used a travel grant to attend the AIA conference and participate in the competition. The team won the $1,000 first-place award and Traveling Heartland Prize Trophy for its submission, titled Mirroring the Void. Visiting assistant professor Jesse Vogler served as the team's faculty adviser.