Fiabci Scholarship Essays

The following is a listing of outside scholarship opportunities international students.

Aga Khan Scholarship
The Aga Khan Foundation provides a limited number of scholarships each year for postgraduate studies to outstanding students from developing countries who have no other means of financing their studies. Scholarships are awarded on a 50% grant: 50% loan basis through a competitive application process once a year in June or July. The Foundation gives priority to requests for Master's level courses but is also willing to consider applications for PhD programs, when doctoral degrees are necessary for the career objectives of the student.

Aker Scholarship
The programme supports Norwegian top students so that they can learn from the best in the world, independent of their family or financial situation. Scholarships are awarded to students in all fields of study.

Alberta Scholarships Program – Sir James Lougheed Awards of Distinction
Applicants must be Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada, be Alberta residents, and be enrolled or planning to enroll full-time in a graduate program at an institution outside of Alberta. There is a lifetime maximum of two awards per student. At the doctoral level, students must have completed at least one full year of graduate study or a master's degree.

American Association of University Women
International Fellowships are awarded for full-time study or research to women who are not United States citizens or permanent residents. Both graduate and postgraduate study at accredited institutions are supported.

American-Scandinavian Foundation
The American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) offers over $500,000 in funding to Scandinavians to undertake study or research programs (usually at the graduate level) in the United States for up to one year. Candidates for awards are recommended to the ASF by our cooperating organizations. In order to apply submit applications to the appropriate cooperative organization (see website for details). Awards are made in all fields.

American Society of Landscape Architects
Lists various programs and scholarships for Landscape Architecture students.

Arts Council of Ireland
Individuals of Irish birth or residence working with the Arts can apply for funding.

Asian Cultural Council
Whether Asian or American, whether a cutting-edge painter or a traditional dancer, whether a classical musician or a modern cultural archeologist—any gifted individual artist or scholar who seeks to grow in his or her craft or field can apply for funding to conduct research and study, receive specialized training, undertake observation tours, or pursue non-commercial creative activity in the United States or among the countries of Asia.

Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC)
The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada administers many scholarships and internships for Canadian Students.

The Association for Women in Architecture Foundation Scholarship
The Association for Women in Architecture Foundation offers an Annual Scholarship Award which is available to female students who reside or attend school in California and who are majoring in architecture, landscape architecture, urban and land planning, interior design, or environmental design.

American Indian Foundation’s William J. Clinton Fellowship
The AIF Clinton Fellowship is open to those aged 21 through 31 years of age who are Indian citizens or U.S. citizens/permanent residents, and have received their undergraduate degree before the start of the fellowship.

Bergmeyer Scholarship
This scholarship intended for a designer who is working towards a career in Interior Design. The Bergmeyer Scholarship recognizes and supports leadership potential in the field of Interior Design and Architecture through a $2,500 award.

Canadian Federation of University Women Fellowships
The Federation has multiple fellowships for women with Canadian citizenship in either Master or Doctoral level studies.

CSN – Centrala Studiestödsnämnden
This program hosts scholarship/fellowship opportunities for students from Sweden. Please visit their website for more details.

Cultuur FB Oranjewoud
Grant opportunities for students from the Netherlands.

Cyprus Children's Fund
This Foundation has a couple of different scholarship options for students who have origins in Cyprus and/or Greece. Please visit their website for application details.

Diversity Advancement Scholarship
The goal and purpose for this important scholarship aims to provide assistance to individuals from a minority race or ethnicity who intend to become an architect through the pursuit of a NAAB-accredited professional degree in architecture.

Edmond J. Safra Graduate Fellowship
The Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics encourages teaching and research about ethical issues in the professions and public life. Its Graduate Fellowships support outstanding Harvard graduate and professional students who are writing dissertations or are engaged in major research on topics in practical ethics, especially ethical issues in areas such as architecture, business, education, government, law, medicine, public health, public policy, and religion.

Enterprise Rose Fellowship
The Enterprise Rose Architectural Fellowship partners early-career architectural designers with local community development organizations, where they facilitate an inclusive approach to development to create green, sustainable, and affordable communities.

Scholarship Foundation
The FIABCI Scholarship Foundation provides aid and travel assistance to students who demonstrate an interest in the field of international real estate or are enrolled in real estate related courses at a qualified university. You must be a member, member's spouse, or a dependent of a member in order to apply.

Frank Boas Scholarship
The Boas Scholarship is awarded each year to a citizen of Belgium or Luxembourg who has been admitted for graduate study at Harvard University.

Fulbright Program/Institute of International Education (IIE)
Contains addresses for Educational/Information Centers and Fulbright commissions around the world administering scholarship programs for national citizens. Contact the center from your country directly to find out the latest information.

Fundação Estudar's Scholarship Program
Estudar offers a variety of educational programs in three main areas: Inspiration, Leadership and Career. Through these programs, we support young people in fully developing their individual potential, in their search for the best education in Brazil and abroad, and in accessing compelling career opportunities.

Global Education Program (GEP)
This is a Russian government funded program that offers Russian citizens an opportunity to study at leading foreign higher education institutions.

Graduate Consortium on Energy and Environment Fellowship
This fellowship is open to all Harvard Doctoral students working on energy issues. Applications are due May 15th, please view the website for more details.

Harvard Clubs of Germany
Two loans of 10,000 EUR each for students who can prove acceptance at any Harvard school or college, demonstrated financial need, and German citizenship. Must also provide a short statement why their particular course of study has been chosen.

Harvard Graduate Student Award
The Harvard Graduate Student Award will support advanced graduate students from Harvard University working on a dissertation or thesis research that addresses some of the most pressing health challenges in Dubai, the UAE, and the Center’s region. Dissertation or thesis research from all disciplines will be considered.

Harvard University Native American Program (HUNAP) Fellowships and Grants
HUNAP provides support to Harvard students to conduct research on Native American and Indigenous issues, for professional development activities, and for conference attendance.

Institute of International Education
Administers over 250 programs on behalf of sponsors that offer international fellowships, scholarships, loans, professional development and more. Program search tool allows students to search for programs by region, field of study, sponsor name, etc.

International Education Financial Aid
Requires no marketing information and is a very comprehensive search engine for international scholarships.

International Facility Management Association Foundation
Scholarships are available annually to graduate and undergraduate students pursuing degrees in facility management or related fields. IFMA Foundation scholarships are awarded based on merit and certain applicant restrictions and/or qualification requirements may apply. Scholarship applicants are solicited in the spring of each year and funded the following fall.

Kennedy Memorial Trust
Scholarships are available for students of UK citizenship who attend MIT or Harvard for post-graduate studies. Please visit their website for the application and requirements.

Kate Neal Kinley Memorial Fellowship
Three major Fellowships are awarded yearly to both U.S. nationals and international students. The application can be found on their website and is due in early December.

Korean Honor Scholarship
To be eligible for consideration, students must be attending college or university in the U.S.A. or Canada and must have an overall grade average of 3.5 or higher. In addition to academic achievement, an essay, a letter of recommendation, awards, honors, performances and extracurricular activities are criteria reviewed for selection.

Korean American Scholarship Foundation
The scholarship recipient is selected on the basis of financial need, academic achievement, school activities, and community services. Each applicant must submit an application to the respective KASF region, in which each region is designated by the state where school is located.

Kosciuszko Foundation Scholarships
Various scholarships and grants for Poles, Americans of Polish descent, as well as exchange programs to Poland and the US, and summer scholarships.

Lambda Alpha International
Lambda Alpha International's Land Economics Foundation (LEF) offers a scholarship to a deserving graduate student pursuing a degree in one of the many fields related to land economics: architecture, geography, urban planning, landscape architecture, environmental planning, civil engineering, government, public administration, real estate, urban studies or law. The LEF Board of Directors has approved the award of a one year $3,000 (U.S.) scholarship, renewable for a second year, to a selected applicant studying in the United States, Canada, or Great Britain.

Landscape Architecture Foundation Awards
Lists various programs and scholarships for Landscape Architecture graduate and undergraduate students.

LASPAU: Academic and Professional Programs for the Americas
For exchange programs between the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Luys Foundation Education Scholarship
Students who are Armenian citizens or Armenian descendants and are between the ages of 18 and 40 are eligible for this scholarship. Students will also participate in the Luys Develop Armenia Program (DAP).

Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund (The World Bank)

When the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, officially opened Jan. 4 in Dubai amid a flurry of fanfare, former Texas A&M architecture student Adrian Smith ’66 was among the honored guests. It was he, after all, who designed the shimmering spire that soars more than a half mile above the desert in the United Arab Emirates, rising to an official height of 828 meters, or 2,716.5 feet.

“It was the culmination of many years of work and one of the most thrilling moments of my career,” said Smith, 65, who studied architecture at Texas A&M for four years spanning 1962-66 before being lured by a summer internship to Chicago where he eventually landed a job, finished his degree and went on to become the world’s most experienced designer of supertall buildings.

"The Burj Dubai, now Burj Khalifa, was designed not for ego gratification or to fulfill a list of superlatives. It was designed to lift the spirits of a nation and a culture, and to bring joy and inspiration to its citizens," said Smith, who designed the structure while working in the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the same firm that offered the aspiring young architect that job back in 1967. It was the job and its promise, he said, that ultimately kept him from returning to Texas A&M to finish his architectural studies.

Smith worked at SOM for almost 40 years, advancing through the ranks and eventually serving as chief executive officer from 1992 – 95, before leaving in 2006 to start his own Chicago-based firm, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture.

Currently he is the designer of three of the world's top 10 tallest completed buildings: Burj Khalifa in Dubai (#1), Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago (#7, at 423 meters or 1387.7 feet) and Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai (#8, at 421 meters or 1381.2 feet), according to the official rankings of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

When Nanjing Greenland Financial Center finishes construction this year in Nanjing, China (it will enter the tall buildings list at #6), Smith will have designed four of the world's top 10 tallest completed buildings. Additionally, the current sixth-tallest building in the world, Chicago's Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), is in the early stages of a green retrofit under the direction of AS+GG.

School days
Though born in Chicago, Smith moved with his family at age five to San Clemente, Calif. He wound up at Texas A&M back in 1962, in part, because he had a brother in the Air Force stationed at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio.

“I looked at schools in Texas, Arizona, California and Illinois where I had contacts and family and decided that A&M was least expensive and I liked the program,” he said. Though upon arriving in College Station, he was surprised to learn that, in those days, two years of service in the Corps of Cadets was compulsory.

“I actually didn’t know,” Smith mused. “I hadn’t realized that I’d be wearing uniforms all day long, living in dorms and going to bed with a curfew. I remember marching to breakfast, lunch and dinner six days a week.”

But ultimately, his stint in the Corps proved valuable. “It gave me a certain discipline,” he said.

Looking back over an incredibly distinguished career, he considers his time at Texas A&M as “formative,” especially his architectural studies and the guidance of a few professors, namely Cecil Steward, Edward Romieniec (now deceased) and John Greer, who have remained his friends throughout his career.
“It was a pretty straightforward program, offering a good background in fundamentals, architectural design, technology and mechanical and structural engineering, Smith said of what was then a five-year professional architecture program at Texas A&M.

“They had a room with a sun dome that allowed us to study ways in which the sun impacted buildings,” he recalled, referring to the “artificial sky” lab housed in the dome atop Langford Building B, which was used for daylighting simulations in the days before computer applications rendered it obsolete. “The consideration of how climate and sunlight affects the structure of a building definitely had some influence on my career.”

In 1966, Smith served as president of the Texas A&M Chapter of the American Association of Architecture Students. While president, he penned an essay, “The Architecture of Aggieland,” for a university publication.

Chicago beckons
In the summer after his fourth year at Texas A&M, Smith applied for internships at the Chicago offices of Perkins & Will and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill to “get some real-life experience.” Though neither firm was hiring at the time, Cecil Steward, his fourth-year instructor who had previously worked at Perkins + Will, pulled some strings and landed the aspiring architect an internship.

Though he’d originally planned to return to Texas A&M in the fall to complete his degree, the excitement of working with a major-league, big-city firm proved too appealing and he stayed on to work the entire year.

“I was working on some very exciting projects and learning a great deal,” he said. Though he was still planning to return to Texas, a job opened up at SOM in March 1967 and he seized the opportunity.

“I worked there through the 1967 season,” he said, “then I had the opportunity to work part time while finishing up my courses at the University of Illinois at Chicago, so that is what I did.”

Smith said Romieniec, who would become the first dean of the College of Architecture at Texas A&M in 1969, visited him a few times in Chicago and that he still sees Greer, his first-year studio instructor, at American Institute of Architecture functions. However, he said, the professor that initially landed him that first internship in Chicago, Cecil Steward, who is now dean emeritus and emeritus professor of architecture and planning at the University of Nebraska, “has, with his extreme interest in sustainability, definitely influenced my direction in architecture.”

Steward, Smith said, played in integral role in helping SOM earn an American Institute of Architects Architecture Firm Award in 1996, and inversely, Smith played a role in Steward’s successful nomination for the Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education, an award presented by the AIA and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture.

An architectural polymath
Upon returning to his native Chicago in 1966 as an architectural intern, Smith said the city skyline, which looked like “man-made mountains on the prairie,” inspired him, tweaking his interest in tall buildings. Early on at SOM, he learned the secrets of skyscraper design directly from Bruce Graham, architect of the Sears Tower and John Hancock Center.

By 1980 he was a partner with the firm and, influenced by Mexican architect Luis Barragán, he became a devotee of contextualism: the idea that new buildings ought to relate to geography, the culture, and especially the architecture immediately around them.

As a result, his buildings are usually based on the idea of an aesthetic continuum rather than a sharp break with precedent. Even the oversized Burj Khalifa draws inspiration from its environs, the contours of its floors evoking the pointed arches of Islamic architecture.

“I wanted real buildings that felt very much a continuation of the fabric of the city they were in,” Smith told Kevin Nance, architecture critic for the Chicago Sun-Times, in an article reprinted in the book “The Architecture of Adrian Smith, 1980-2006, SOM.” “When I designed a building, I wanted it to look as if it could only exist in this location—it would be out of place anywhere else.”

Over the years, nearly every one of Smith’s projects has achieved international acclaim in one form or another. SOM projects under his guidance have earned more than 90 awards for design excellence, including seven national AIA awards. He has been presented the Urban Land Institute’s Award for Excellence in Large Scale Urban Development/Mixed Use, the prestigious FIABCI (International Real Estate Federation) Prix d’Excellence Award, and the Gold Prize of the Shanghai Classic Buildings.

Smith has designed buildings in China, England, Germany, Brazil, Kuwait, Canada, Korea, Guatemala, Bahrain, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and the United States.

“His expertise covers areas as broad as operations, marketing, finance, and professional services,” wrote James P. Cramer, chairman and CEO of The Greenway Group, in the foreword to the aforementioned book. “He is truly one of the few architectural polymaths, a person who has great diversity of skills and immense intellect.”

At AS+GG, Smith has assembled one of the most experienced design teams in the world, including several key figures on SOM's design teams for Burj Khalifa and other supertall projects. In addition to AS+GG partners Gordon Gill and Robert Forest, both experts in the supertall field, these include Peter Weismantle, SOM's senior technical architect on Burj Khalifa and now director of Supertall Building Technology at AS+GG; Roger Frechette, formerly a director in charge of sustainable engineering at SOM, and now president of AS+GG's new environmental energy engineering company; and several other former SOM architects with experience in supertall projects.

Since its inception three years ago, AS+GG has been commissioned to design six new supertall towers over 500 meters in height, including two towers over 800 meters. These are now on hold due to the economic recession.

Smith and partner Gordon Gill have collaborated to design two of the world's most sustainable buildings. These include Pearl River Tower, the world's first planned net-zero-energy tower, currently under construction in Guangzhou, China, and Masdar Headquarters, the world's first large-scale positive-energy building—meaning it will generate more power than it consumes—now under construction in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Pearl River was designed while Smith and Gill were at SOM; Masdar HQ is an AS+GG project. AS+GG has also recently augmented its design services with the addition of Peter Kindel, a former associate partner at SOM who is now AS+GG's Director of Urban Design.

Sustainable design
Sustainability is central to Smith’s designs and his tall and supertall buildings, “though really built more for landmark recognition,” he said, “than for any other reason,” are no exception.

“The world is urbanizing at a rate of 100 million people per year,” Smith said. “There is limited land available in those urban environments, so one has to go up, build vertically.”

Skyscrapers such as Burj Khalifa are inherently sustainable because they accommodate a large number of people on a small footprint, which helps save agricultural land from development and reduce carbon emission associated with commuting to and from suburbs. They also offer efficient vertical and horizontal transportation systems, encouraging the use of public transit and creating increasingly walkable cities.

“If you build a John Hancock Center or Sears Tower or Burj Dubai, that actually saves 700 acres of suburban development,” said Smith. “Now you can take the 700 acres and put it into farmland or wind farms or agriculture or tree growth and forestation and it becomes very sustainable. Added to that,” he continued, “if you build several tall buildings adjacent to each other or near each other, you create a city within a city where people are walking to work and living in or near the places they are working in, so they are not commuting 10 to 20 miles.”

In addition to designing new sustainable buildings, AS+GG is committed to the greening of existing structures and helping the building design industry meet its goal of “zero net energy” buildings by the year 2030. To that end, Smith says his firm is starting a new company that will focus entirely on green retrofits of existing structures.

“40 to 50 percent of carbon emissions are caused by buildings, not transportation systems,” Smith said. “In order to come close to the 2030 Challenge, each of the existing buildings designed and built between 1950 and 2000 need to be worked on in terms of reducing their carbon footprint to the tune of almost 80%. So there is a tremendous amount of work to be done in the retrofitting of existing buildings in order to reduce carbon. That’s the goal,” he continued, “whether or not it’s the cause of global warming, it is an important aspect of a cleaner environment. I believe that’s a point for consideration.”


- Posted: Feb. 01, 2010 -

— the end —

Contact:   Phillip Rollfing, or 979.458.0442.


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