02/04/22 USC Architectural Guild Designates $200,000 to the School of Architecture


In their largest contribution to the School, the USC Architectural Guild designated $200,000 to the USC School of Architecture in support of Dean Milton S. F. Curry, Della and Harry MacDonald Dean's Chair, and his current and future diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs and initiatives.


A giant check was presented to the School and accepted by alumnus and USC Architecture Board of Councilors Executive Committee member, Mauricio Oberfeld (B.Arch ‘94).


“I look around this room, leaders of the built environment, each of you are the epitome, the perfect example, of the Citizen Architect – professionally-focused, and socially-engaged. You are dedicating so much, doing so much, for others,” says Mr. Oberfeld during his acceptance remarks at the January Guild Board meeting.


Some of the funds will be allocated to support scholarships for undergraduate and graduate architecture students.


“It is my dream to study architecture in graduate school, but since the cost of my undergraduate degree is so high, I did not think that dream was achievable. This scholarship has increased the possibility of attending graduate school for me, and by extension allowing me to have more mobility in my career,” wrote past scholarship recipient Stephanie Saunders (B.Arch ‘22) in a letter to the Guild Board.


The funds will also support mentorship, the global studies program, student research grants, the School’s A-Lab Architecture Development program for underrepresented high school students, undergraduate fellowships, and professional development initiatives.


"Our peers and colleagues rallied this past year to generously support our two signature fundraising events, the Annual Dinner and the Golf Tournament,” says Amy Pokawatana (B.Arch ’00), President of the USC Architectural Guild and Vice President of Hudson Pacific Properties. “We’re thrilled to be able to provide $50,000 more than the previous year to support and enrich the student experience.”


Bee Rarewala ‘00, Principal at CallisonRTKL, chaired the Dinner Committee which raised more than $550,000 for the 62nd Anniversary USC Architectural Guild Dinner held at the LA Memorial Coliseum on October 19.


Roger Fricke, Vice President of Clark Construction, chaired the Golf Committee which raised more than $370,000 for the 40th Anniversary Golf Tournament held at Lakeside Golf Club on August 16, 2021.


Thanks to their generous annual support, the Guild has been able to supplement and enhance students’ educational experiences by providing resources and funds for mentorship, career advancement, networking events and more, in addition to providing funds.


“I am so grateful for my experience at USC Architecture when I was a student. To be able to give back, encourage my peers to give back, and help strengthen the sense of community in the built environment is very fulfilling,” says Jenna Knudsen (B.Arch ’97), Managing Principal at CO Architects, and incoming President of the Guild.


Guild members are alumni and non-alumni alike, leaders in the built environment dedicating many volunteer hours for the benefit of USC Architecture students.


“The Guild is the reason I accepted my admission to USC Architecture,” says Lulu Gonzalez ‘22, a graduate student in the M.Arch+3 program, and Graduate Student Representative on the Guild Board of Directors. “The support from the professional community and the network the Guild provides for students is unrivaled.”


For a list of current Board Members, please click here. To learn more about the USC Architectural Guild, click here. To become a Guild member, click here and to make a gift to support any of these initiatives above, reach out to Kirsten Peterson Johansen at kirstepj@usc.edu or by phone 213-821-5402.



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