The Delbert Highlands Travel Fellowship supports School of Architecture alumni in the study of collections belonging to locales to promote the professional development of awardees and contribute to the richness of our surroundings.

The School of Architecture is currently accepting applications for the 2020 award. Applications are due at 5:00pm EST on
31 October 2019. View the application instructions and apply at the links below.


The Fellowship is named in honor of Professor Delbert Highlands, who taught courses in architectural design, design theory, and architectural history from the 1960s through the first decade of this century. He has been widely recognized as a seminal teacher whose skill and understanding enriched the educations of generations of students. 

Professor Delbert Highlands

Professor Delbert Highlands

Professor Highlands emphasized the “individual,” the “particular”, and the “local” in his teaching. His courses were grounded in authoritative scholarship and meticulously presented fundamentals, but always went further by asking students to think of “this time,” “this place”, and this “occupancy.” His teaching presented prospects for a life of work that were inspiring and that would always present fresh challenges to learn more, go deeper, and design buildings that truly engage our humanity. He has been a key influence in the lives of hundreds of graduates of the School of Architecture.

In keeping with Professor Highlands’ thinking and contributions to the School, the Fellowship supports the study of collections belonging to locales. There are perhaps endless possibilities: from the frescoes of a remote town, to the building vernacular of a whole province, to many options that have not yet been thought of. The common denominators will be the local and the particular.

It is intended that the experience of the Fellowship directly support the professional development of individual awardees to the end of contributing to the richness of our surroundings.
The award amount will total $12,000.


Upon completion of the Fellowship there will be an obligation for reporting, presentation, and delivery of materials to a Fellowship archive. It is recognized that the form of reporting may vary significantly with the applicant and the subject matter. Recognizing that communication skills and interests will vary among awardees, latitude will be given to the ways in which awardees will contribute results of their travel to the school. Anticipated formats include lectures, seminars, and exhibitions. Ideally these would be timed to occur simultaneously with an announcement of the subsequent award-winner. It is anticipated that the awardee would make a presentation of their project at the annual First Day School Assembly.

Eligibility & Schedule

This award is open to alumni of the School of Architecture. Students in the final year of their studies may apply provided that they will have graduated by the time they would receive the award. Awardees cannot be enrolled in an educational institution during the period of travel. Faculty and employees of CMU, former Fellowship-winners, and members of the founding committee are not eligible. Proposals should be made for projects whose completion is anticipated for the year the award is received or slightly beyond. 

The School of Architecture is currently accepting applications for the 2020 award. Applications are due at 5:00pm EST on
31 October 2019.

Previous Award Winners

2018  |  Dan Burdzy (B.Arch ‘13)  |  The Value of Junk: Adventure Playgrounds of London and Berlin
            read article posted to CMU News site

2016  |  Louisa Jáuregui (B.Arch '09)  |  A German Paradigm for Reexamining Residual Urban Spaces
            download presentation | download poster | read article posted to CMU News site

2014  |  Matthew Scarlett (B.Arch '08)  |  Asmara: A Case for the City in the City
            download presentation

2012  |  William Riehm (B.Arch '94)  |  Inland Gambian Preservation: A Case Study and Travel Narrative
            download presentation | download paper | download blog

2010  |  Can Tiryaki (B.Arch '98)  |  Transitions in Religious Architecture in Asia Minor
             download presentation