Mississippi State architecture students receive travel awards for international research

Contact: Christie McNeal

STARKVILLE, Miss.—A junior architecture student at Mississippi State will get a chance to broaden her global perspective with help from a $20,000 Aydelott Travel Award.

Yuria J. Sloane portrait
Yuria J. Sloane (Submitted photo)

Yuria J. Sloane of Charleston, South Carolina, plans to travel this summer to Bolivia, Japan, New Zealand and Norway to research the use of architecture as a tool of oppression and liberation for indigenous communities. Her itinerary includes studies of architect Freddy Mamani's El Cholets in El Alto, Bolivia; the Okinawa Prefectural Museum by Ishimoto Architectural and Engineering Firm in Naha, Okinawa; architecture firm Tennent Brown’s Te Wharehou o Waikaremoana in Te Urewera, New Zealand; and architects Christian Sunby’s and Stein Halvorsen’s Sameting in Karasjok, Norway.

“Receiving this award has been eye opening to the possibilities of architectural work outside of traditional practice,” Sloane said. “I have never had an opportunity presented that allowed me to research something so personally important to me. It has inspired me to possibly follow a research-focused path during my schooling and beyond.”

Assistant Professor Silvina Lopez Barrera will advise Sloane in her research.

“Being of an indigenous group myself, I have found myself drawn to buildings with deep cultural motivations,” Sloane said. “When we think about modern examples of indigenous architecture, we cannot ignore the social elements that surround them and their ability to have a platform in the architecture industry. I settled on my topic because I think it is important to look at how architecture was used to harm and can now be used to repair.”

The $2.4 million endowment—established by late Memphis architect Alfred Lewis Aydelott and his wife Hope Galloway Aydelott—provides an award each year to four architecture students currently enrolled in the professional architecture degree programs at Mississippi State, as well as the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; Auburn University; and the University of Tennessee.

Additionally, rising senior architecture major Anna Rives Gully of Starkville is receiving a $4,750 Trussell Travel Award sponsored by MSU School of Architecture alumnus Ted T. Porter to support her research on Daniel Libeskind’s Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany. She will be specifically looking into how the building addresses and fits into the societal context of Berlin, defined by World War II and the Holocaust. Gully will further her contextual understanding of World War II in Europe through additional travels to Austria and Prague.

Anna Rives Gully portrait
Anna Rives Gully (Submitted photo)

“The Aydelott and Trussell Travel Awards provide amazing opportunities for our students to experience architecture throughout the world,” said School of Architecture Director and F.L. Crane Professor Karen Cordes Spence. “We are extremely fortunate to have this support for students and are grateful to Mr. and Mrs. Aydelott and Mr. Porter for making this possible.”

MSU’s School of Architecture offers the state’s only professional architecture degree accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board. Learn more at www.caad.msstate.edu. Explore similar opportunities available to current architecture students at caad.msstate.edu/current-students/architecture/fellowships-awards.

Mississippi State University is taking care of what matters. Learn more at www.msstate.edu.