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Tulane University

February 22, 2012

The Tulane School of Architecture is pleased to announce that the Tulane City Center, in conjunction with Grow Dat Youth Farm and New Orleans City Park is the recipient of a 2012 SEED Award for Excellence in Public Interest Design.

The Grow Dat Youth Farm received one of six awards of excellence, representing the very best examples of the mission and principles of social, economic, environmental designoffering tangible evidence of how design is effectively playing a role in addressing the most critical issues around the globe, addressing the biggest social and economic challenges. Grow Dat is a four acre farm where high school students from diverse backgrounds become young leaders through the meaningful work of growing healthy food. High school students work as "crew members" learning to plant, harvest, and cook while participating in leadership training classes. In its second growing season, the program is host to 25 young leaders working with dedicated staff in a new non-profit organization created by the Tulane City Center and Tulane University to serve vital needs in the New Orleans community. Tulane faculty members Scott Bernhard, Emilie Taylor and Abigail Feldman and TCC Associate Director Dan Etheridge led teams of architecture students in the design and construction of the farm infrastructure and facilities in a 6000 square foot compound on the four-acre farm site. More than 45 students of architecture have worked on the design and construction of the project and more than a dozen departments of Tulane University have been involved in establishing the Grow Dat program. The facility features: bio-filtration, composting toilets, on-site water sequestration, soil remediation, passive cooling and extensive material recycling and repurposing. Project completion is scheduled for May of 2012.

Book, Robert R. Taylor and Tuskegee: An African American Architect Designs for Booker T. Washington by Professor Emerita Ellen Weiss, has been reviewed in numerous venues, including New York Times article, Pioneering Architect and The Mobile Times-Register article, Southern Bound: Tuskegee architect finally gets his due.  Professor Weiss has also been on multiple radio interviews including NPR Morning Edition. The text interweaves the life of the first academically trained African American architect with his life’s work—the campus of Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute.

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