S|ARC 50th Anniversary Chautauqua
At the founding of the Mississippi State University School of Architecture, the dean and faculty of the school invited outstanding practitioners and academics to come to campus and take on a design challenge, the Chautauqua. The Chautauqua was conceived as a collaboration between the School of Architecture and the Center for Small Town Research and Design (the former name of the current research center the Fred Carl Jr. Small Town Center) at the inception of the Small Town Center in October 1979.
For the 50th anniversary of the school, this program was held again October 20-22, 2023.
The school invited Jess Zimbabwe, executive director at Environmental Works in Seattle and former director of the Daniel Rose Center for Public Leadership, as well as alumni, past faculty and administrators to work with the School of Architecture for the Chautauqua. The project was to create prototype mobile disaster relief stations that would provide food, information, and other needed services to rural communities.
Teams to take on this challenge consisted of alumni team leaders and first through fifth-year students. The alumni leaders guided and challenged the work of each team over the weekend with the help of Zimbabwe. At the end of the weekend, a discussion of the work took place. This format allowed our alumni team leaders to connect to our current students in a direct and fun-filled way.