Karen Kensek receives the Mellon Mentoring Award

School News

Karen Kensek receives the Mellon Mentoring Award

May 02, 2013

Karen Kensek, an assistant professor at the USC School of Architecture, was recently recognized with the USC Mellon Mentoring Award for her long-standing commitment to mentoring graduate students.


Kensek, who teaches in the field of computer applications for architecture, was selected as a recipient of the award, which honors individual faculty for helping build a supportive academic environment at USC through faculty-to-student and faculty-to-faculty mentoring.


Great mentoring for academic success occurs at USC through both informal and formal means, and may vary considerably from discipline to discipline. The main criterion for all the mentoring awards is the demonstration of a continued commitment to mentoring, and effectiveness in mentoring.


Kense's research includes BIM + Sustainability, BIM + digital simulation, virtual reconstruction of ancient places, the role of ambiguity in reconstructions, solar envelopes, and digital design. Previously she taught computer seminars and assisted with computer-aided design studios at the University of California at Berkeley, where she earned her M.Arch. degree and was the recipient of numerous grants and donations of computer hardware and software.


She is a past president of the Association of Computer Aided Design in Architecture (ACADIA), was awarded the 2002 Tau Sigma Delta medal for distinction in teaching, and was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society at USC in 2004.  She has been teaching for more than 20 years in the transforming field of computer applications.


Kensek has hosted six building information modeling symposia at USC: BIM SYM; BIM BOP 2008: the Second Annual USC Symposium on BIM + Sustainable Design; BIM FAB!CON: the Third Annual USC Symposium on Building Information Modeling + Construction and Fabrication; BIM ANALYTICS: the Fourth Annual USC Symposium on Building Information Modeling + Evidence Based Design;  Extreme BIM: Parameters and Customization, and Practical BIM in 2012.


She has spoken at the AIA Annual Conference several times, was awarded, along with the School of Architecture, the Autodesk Revit BIM Experience Award in 2008 and spearheaded the effort for an Honorable Mention awarded by the AIA TAP Group in Building Information Model for Building Integration Interoperability Interdisciplinary Modeling (B III M) in 2010.


Doug Noble, Karen Kensek, Marc Schiler