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First Capstone Project Complete in Revitalized Environmental Design Degree Program.

Photo of Tuskegee Methodist Church bulletin board

This past summer seventeen students completed the first capstone workshop in the new Environmental Design program. This new program, which allows students to earn a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design, is a flexible multi-disciplinary degree that provides students with a broad education in design and construction related fields. The Environmental Design Capstone Workshop requires students to initiate and complete a community engagement environmental design project using principles of collaboration, leadership and effectiveness training, hands-on experience, civic engagement, and design communication skills. These partnerships were established over the course of the spring semester in the Research Methods course, taught by APLA professors Christian Dagg and Justin Miller.

Among the projects undertaken by the student teams was the documentation of the First United Methodist Church (FUMC) of Tuskegee, Alabama.  The student team of Daniel Weldon, Lauren Waldroop, and Lauren Johnson worked with Alabama Rural Ministries (ARM) and Church overseers to develop documentation in support of an application for recognition as an historic building.  The students researched HABS (Historic American Building Survey) documentation standards and completed drawings, photo documentation, and historic reports necessary for a petition to the State of Alabama.   The teams work will be used by ARM and the FUMC to carry out the nomination to the Alabama State Historic Register.

The project was one among several successful collaborations with community partners including collaborations with the Alabama Association of Habitat for Humanity Affiliates, The Learning Tree, AU Forest Ecology Preserve, Alabama Rural Ministries and the Tuskegee First United Methodist Church.