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Hoffmann Architects + Engineers Announces 2024 Diversity Advancement Scholarship Recipient

Scholarship awarded to Alyssa Duran of NYC College of Technology

New Haven CT— 10 April 2024Hoffmann Architects + Engineers, a design firm specializing in the rehabilitation of building exteriors, has named the 2024 recipient the Hoffmann Diversity Advancement Scholarship. Now in its second year, the Hoffmann Scholarship was established in collaboration with the Connecticut Architecture Foundation (CAF) to support students from underrepresented racial or ethnic groups who are seeking degrees in architecture or engineering.

2024 Hoffmann Diversity Advancement Scholarship Winner Announced

Alyssa Duran, a fourth-year student pursuing a Bachelor of Architecture at the New York City College of Technology, has been selected as the recipient of the 2024 Hoffmann Diversity Advancement Scholarship. Duran was selected from a competitive applicant pool of high-achieving students, many the first in their families to attend college, who were inspired to enter the design professions to pursue environmental justice, protect heritage sites, and improve the daily lives of their communities.

“We were captivated by the talent and drive of this year’s applicant pool as they overcame challenges to pursue careers in architecture and design,” said Alison Hoffmann, chair of the Hoffmann Diversity and Inclusion Committee. “They describe experiences with housing insecurity, with surviving natural disasters and conflict in their country of origin, with the responsibilities of caring for siblings and holding down jobs while managing schoolwork. Yet their narratives overwhelmingly focus on a passion for architecture and for the ways it can shape a community. Many of the applicants cited preserving culturally important structures and uplifting neighborhoods through design as motivations for pursuing their studies. Our committee was inspired and humbled by these ambitious young people.”

A Dream of Safeguarding the Living Environment

Alyssa Duran grew up in the Dominican Republic, where she observed firsthand the challenges of preserving the island’s historic architecture. The tropical climate accelerated deterioration and led Duran to consider how to address the increasing threats to the built environment due to climate change. When she came to New York, she was drawn to historic restoration.

“I became inspired by the innovative methods employed to rehabilitate, give new life, and restore existing structures,” Duran said. “I believe historic restoration represents the future of architecture, showcasing that sustainable design can be achieved in this industry in so many ways without having to start from scratch.”

With a focus on the rehabilitation of building exteriors, the specialized practice of Hoffmann Architects + Engineers aligns with Duran’s goals to reduce climate impact through the restoration and reuse of existing buildings. Hoffmann’s scholarship committee was impressed not only with her impeccable academic record and perfect 4.0 GPA, but also with her sense of place. Deeply connected with the spaces where she lives and works, Duran interned with the NYC Department of Design and Construction, contributed to research with NYCCT architecture faculty, and currently serves as a Digital Fabrication Specialist for the Architecture Department. Bilingual in English and Spanish, she brings a forward-thinking design sensibility to the practice of restoration, which Hoffmann champions as a key priority of this scholarship program.

About the Hoffmann Scholarship

To fund the scholarship, Hoffmann Architects + Engineers contributed $25,000 in its inaugural year and an additional $10,000 in the second year. John J. Hoffmann, FAIA, Executive Chairman of the firm, personally contributed several thousand dollars more, and employees joined him in making personal donations. CAF also collected contributions from individual donors.

The Hoffmann Diversity Advancement Scholarship is open to applicants who are students entering or enrolled full-time in an NAAB-accredited architecture program or ABET-accredited civil or structural engineering program, and residents / full-time college or university students located in southern New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island) or the eastern Mid-Atlantic (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Washington DC, Virginia, Maryland), regions that form the core of Hoffmann’s practice. Eligible applicants represent a minority racial or ethnic group, as defined by the State of New York.

Applicants were solicited through a joint outreach effort with CAF to college and university architecture and engineering departments, campus affinity groups, social media, and professional organizations, such as the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). Applications were evaluated by the CAF Board and the Hoffmann Diversity and Inclusion Committee, a voluntary group of employees from varied locations, job positions, experience levels, backgrounds, identities, religious beliefs, and racial/ethnic heritage.

Learn More and Donate

Contributions to the Hoffmann Diversity Advancement Scholarship Fund may be made through the Connecticut Architecture Foundation: https://cafct.org/hoffmann-diversity-advancement-scholarship/

Application forms and details on eligibility and submission requirements are available through CAF: https://cafct.org/hoffmann-diversity-advancement-scholarship-2/

Details on next year’s scholarship program will be available at the start of the 2024-25 academic year, with the application deadline projected in early 2025.

About Hoffmann Architects + Engineers

Founded in 1977, Hoffmann Architects + Engineers specializes in the rehabilitation of building enclosures. The firm’s work focuses on the exteriors of existing structures, diagnosing and resolving deterioration within facades, roofing systems, windows, waterproofing materials, plazas/terraces, parking garages, and historic and landmark structures. We provide consulting services for new construction, as well as litigation and claim support. Our technical professionals investigate and correct damage resulting from time and weather, substandard or improper construction, design defects, material failures, poor workmanship, structural movement, and stress. To learn more, visit www.hoffarch.com.

About the Connecticut Architecture Foundation

The Connecticut Architecture Foundation Inc. was established by the Connecticut Chapter of The American Institute of Architects in 1978. The organization’s mission is to raise the public awareness of, and expectations for, architecture and the built environment. CAF accomplishes these goals through the funding of programs in education, scholarship, mentorship and research. Administration of the Foundation’s Scholarship Program is an important part of that work. For more information, visit www.cafct.org.