December 1, 2017
Competition Announcement

January 17, 2018
Deadline for Submissions

February 1, 2018
Winning Design Announced

April 6-8, 2018
USA Science & Engineering Festival


Students and/or faculty at ACSA Full or Candidate member schools are eligible to enter the competition individually or in teams. One entry per person/team is permitted. An individual may not also be a part of a team submission.


ACSA will work with the winners to realize the design and provide up to $1,500 honorarium for travel to Washington, DC, to participate in the festival. Winning project will be featured on StudyArchitecture.com and #imadethat.

ACSA seeks proposals from architecture students and faculty at ACSA Full and Candidate member schools for the design of a Study Architecture exhibit booth and interactive experience for the 2018 USA Science and Engineering Festival. The 10 x 10 foot booth should reflect the branding and messages of ACSA’s Study Architecture and #IMadeThat campaigns. The proposed activities within the booth should engage visitors in understanding how architects and architecture school graduates use science, technology, engineering, and math to design the world.


The Study Architecture Campaign and STEM

Architecture is a bridge that connects the technical to the creative. It’s a field where imagination and reality become intertwined. Many students are simply not aware of the opportunities that an architectural education affords them. Moreover, those students that are aware lack a streamlined way to search for an architecture program that fits them best. The Study Architecture campaign addresses that need by exposing students to architecture as a potential career path and to provide them with the tools necessary to select the right architecture program. In addition to the StudyArchitecture.com portal is #IMadeThat a social media hashtag campaign and website to collect the diverse work happening in architecture schools around the world. The @IMadeThat_ audience has reached more than 33,000 followers on Instagram, and growing.

The growing importance of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines is an opportunity for the architecture profession. We believe that a degree in architecture provides many of the same critical skills. Architecture involves all of these subjects so naturally we have a responsibility to present architecture in the same space. To this end, we invite students and faculty to engage the USA Science & Engineering Festival through the design and installation of a Study Architecture Exhibit Booth.

The USA Science & Engineering Festival

The Festival takes place in Washington, DC, every three years. Organizers anticipate more than 350,000 visitors over the three-day expo. Exhibitors report 5,000-12,000 visitors. The vast expo covers the gamut of STEM areas across multiple pavilions. Major corporations and government agencies provide impressively interactive experiences and demonstrations for visitors. Visitors—most of them K-12 students—thrive off the swag available from booths. Competition for attention is high.

Project Brief


The exhibit booth proposal must work within the scope and conditions (below) of a 10' x 10' space, leaving room for 2 volunteers to interact with up to 4–6 visitors. The proposal should work within a $10,000 budget for all aspects except volunteer travel costs.

Fabrication and shipping costs: $3,000
Swag: $5,000
Technology & Decoration: $2,000

Note: see the Festival website for exhibitor information about costs. The Festival has also published tips for creating a strong exhibit. Special consideration will be given to projects that incorporate reusability.

Booth Conditions

Each 10' x 10' Standard Exhibit Space comes equipped with the following:
  • 8’ high draped back & 3’ high side walls (white)
  • (1) 6'L x 24”W x 30”H skirted table (white)*
  • (2) Plastic contour chairs*
  • (1) Wastebasket*
  • (1) 11” x 17” identification sign with company name and booth number
  • (1) Standard 5 amp electrical outlet, located at the back of your booth (a standard electrical outlet can accommodate 1 laptop or 1 small device. Additional electricity is available for an additional charge.)
  • The entire exhibit must be contained within the booth space.
  • Storage of any boxes or supplies must also be contained within the space.

* Optional

Submission Requirements

Design Brief

A brief abstract, 300 words maximum, (in English) is required as part of the submission describing the most important concepts of the booth design. The names of participants, their schools, or faculty, must NOT appear on any of the submitted material.

Required Drawings + Digital Presentation Format

Each presentation must directly address the criteria outlined in the Call and Criteria for Judging and must include (but are not limited to) the following required drawings:
  • Booth Diagram, Plan showing the surrounding booths, Elevations showing context and major elements;
  • Large Scale Drawing(s), either orthographic or three dimensional;
  • A three dimensional representation in the form of either an axonometric, perspective, or model photographs, one of which should illustrate the character of the project;
  • Illustrate graphically, or otherwise, the Swag materials;
  • Review the expected costs (fabrication, swag, technology & decoration);
  • Incomplete or undocumented entries will be disqualified. All drawings should be presented at a scale appropriate to the design solution and include a graphic scale.

Submissions must be designed on no more than four 20” x 20” digital boards. The names of student or faculty participants, their schools, must NOT appear on the boards.

All boards are required to be uploaded through the ACSA website in Portable Document Format (PDF) or Image (JPEG) Files. Participants should not use text or graphics that cross over from board to board. The names of participants, their schools, or faculty, must NOT appear on any of the submitted material.

Online Project Submission

Entries must be uploaded through the ACSA Competition website at acsa-arch.org/competitions by 5:00 pm, Eastern Time, on January 17, 2018. If the Submission is from a team all team members will have the ability to upload the digital files. Once the final submit button is pressed no additional edits, uploads, or changes can be made. Once the final Submission is uploaded and submitted each participant will receive a confirmation email notification. A final Submission upload must contain the following:
  • Completed online submission information including all Team Members
  • Four 20” x 20” boards uploaded individually as a high resolution Portable Document Format (PDF) or Image (JPEG) files
  • A Design Essay/Abstract.
Winning projects will be required to submit original files/images for use in construction and exhibit materials.

Judging Criteria

The ACSA will convene a group of faculty from its Leadership Committee to review submissions and determine one winning design.

Criteria include:
  • Eye catching design
  • Clear understanding of fabrication process and requirements
  • Clear understanding of what visitors will learn and/or take away from the booth
  • Clear understanding of how visitors engage in the booth
  • A means to track attendees
  • Special consideration will be given to projects that incorporate reusability


Eric Wayne Ellis
Director of Operations and Programs

Allison Smith
Programs Manager