Seeking Knowledge on Diversity & Inclusion

I’m taking a course this semester called Diversity for Global Society. It is part of the Virginia Tech Graduate School’s Transformative Graduate Education Initiative and this course is designed to introduce students to concepts in diversity, inclusion, and equity and how they relate to higher education–both here at Virginia Tech and from a global perspective. The environment in which a person grows up and the culture experienced therein results in many underlying assumptions, misconceptions, and biases that influence the way a person experiences the present. This background often influences a person’s experience of diversity, inclusion, race/racism, class, economy, and equity. In this class, … Continue Reading →

Introductions from a Global Diversity & Community Perspective

I’m doing this a little bit out of order. Ideally, I would have written a little bit about what I’m doing with Diversity for Global Society before my first post, to give it a little context, but that blog post is still in draft form. Anyway, below is my response to the course’s first blog prompt. It was written after I had to respond to a series of deep-thinking questions about who I am, what bothers me, where I come from, what my goals, dreams, and aspirations are. It was a nice lead into thinking about what to write for this … Continue Reading →

Lifestyle Balance & the Academy: Be The Change

In academe, every scholar has a recipe for success. Some are more effective than others–each of us has a unique experience and methods for getting things done and surviving–but we can still learn from each other. I am going to share a handful of my secrets that help me to stay healthy, hard working, and happy. I have seen this meme pop up over and over during my graduate education experience. I think a lot of students feel this way about trying to balance their work life with their family and social lives. Even I have felt this way at … Continue Reading →

New Year New Studio Means A New Introduction for Students!

I can’t very well ask everyone to introduce themselves without also participating in the blog prompt, so here is a little bit about me. Week 1: Introduce Yourself What is your name? What does it mean? Who picked it out? My name is Sara Katherine. My mother named me after I was born. My folks weren’t the type to come up with baby names before the birth, so when the doctors handed me to my mom the first time, she said something like “Hello, Sara Katherine” and that was that. Sara means “princess” in Hebrew. Katherine is a Latin name for “pure” or … Continue Reading →

Welcome to Our “New” Studio

From a vision that started with a few pieces of blue painter’s tape on the ground to a studio that is more or less a room within a room–our new space is up, it’s sturdy, and it’s buzzing with anticipation for our first class Thursday night.             Continue Reading →

Studio Prep

We have been busy getting ready for the semester and there are just a few more finishing touches before we have everything completed in advance of meeting our students. Our “big map” from last semester found its new home on our studio wall. (Almost) Every stream, beach, cliff, shoal, boat ramp, island, dam, bridge, and …

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Chattahoochee National Water Trail Interdisciplinary Studio

I am so excited to be the GRA/GTA for the Chattahoochee National Water Trail Interdisciplinary Studio. We have a lot of exciting work ahead of us this semester and I am excited to meet a diverse batch of graduate, undergraduate, and honors students who are interested in our project. We will be exploring topics related to what a National Park of the 21st century should be/will develop into as the paid project team will be focusing on the prospects of over-night camping on the water trail. I will be writing about studio pedagogy this semester and am looking forward to … Continue Reading →

Fall Semester Student Presentations

Join Us! Thursday, December 14 from 2-4 pm in the Collegiate Square Studio for the student presentations that 5th year studio is developing from their exploration of the Chattahoochee National Water Trail. Representatives from the National Park Service will be on-hand to respond to the student presentations, answer audience questions, and provide feedback. Directions to …

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Time to Put a Bow on it

Since my arrival at Tech, I have experienced more learning and exposure to new ideas than perhaps I have in my entire education to date. I came here primarily for two reasons: the first, because I was interested the Landscape Architecture program because I could pursue an Architecture & Design Research PhD (1 of 5 offered in the U.S.) and second, because the Graduate School offered a Transformative Graduate Education Experience that was promised to  be unlike anything I had encountered before.  So far, I have not been disappointed. Over the past semester, I have tried to absorb as much as I … Continue Reading →