AIA Chicago Foundation selects 2023 Diversity Scholarship Recipients and Chicago Award in Architecture Student Recipients

Image of numerous sketches.

The Seam, Chicago Award in Architecture

Recipients represent the vast talent of Chicago’s architecture students.

August 8, 2023: CHICAGO: The Board of Trustees of AIA Chicago Foundation, the charitable, independent not-for-profit organization which supports scholarships, grants, awards, and initiatives to strengthen Chicago’s architectural community, have announced the recipients of the 2023 Diversity Scholarship and the Chicago Award in Architecture – Student Award.

Diversity Scholarship
The AIA Chicago Foundation Diversity Scholarship is an opportunity to attract and retain diverse, talented young professionals in Chicago. It recognizes the value of new and unique voices in the profession, with students selected from Illinois Institute of Technology, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and University of Illinois Chicago. Up to two $10,000 scholarships will be awarded each year. Each $10,000 scholarship will be awarded over two years, $5,000 per year, per recipient. Each awardee is paired with a mentor from the AIA Chicago membership to receive ongoing guidance throughout their educational tenure.

2023 Recipients:
Jocelyn Hernandez; University of Illinois Chicago
Jamia Smith; University of Illinois Chicago
View headshots and learn more about the Diversity Scholarship

Chicago Award in Architecture – Student Award
The Chicago Award in Architecture is a juried competition of student projects from universities that surround the AIA Chicago region. Recognition is given, at the jury’s discretion, for First, Second, and Third Place and for Honorable Mentions. The project awarded First Place is honored with the the Benn-Johnck Award, in the amount of $500, Second Place is awarded $300, and Third Place is awarded $200.

2023 Recipients:

1st Place Benn-Johnck Award
The Seam
Trae Horne & Moid Ali
Prof. Gustavo Utrabo & Brianda Mireles
Illinois Institute of Technology

2nd Place
Non-Collapse “Home” Vertical Seasonal Migration Community and Neighborhood in Madagascar
Rui Wang
Prof. Monika Thadhani, Berenika Boberska, & Charles Pipal
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago

3rd Place
When we Live Alone – Spatial Prototype for Single Urban Living
Ziqi Huang
Prof. Monika Thadhani
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Honorable Mention
Stitching Networks: Transitioning ‘Scapes
Bryan Cruz López & Tasmia Kamal
Prof. Sara Bartumeus
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Learn more about the Chicago Award in Architecture – Student Award

The AIA Chicago Foundation is a partner organization of AIA Chicago, the second largest chapter of The American Institute of Architects and the collective voice of 4,000 licensed architects, emerging professionals, architecture students, and allied professionals.

For media inquiries, contact David Cordaro at or call (312) 376-2745. 

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