"We want people to be judged by what they do and the functions they perform, not by gender"
- Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Fe_arch, a College of Architecture group, exists at Texas Tech University to realize architecture as a gender-balanced profession. Through examples of women's work in architecture and design, Fe_arch inspires students and increases awareness of women's involvement in making the built environment. This equitable perspective serves to recruit, retain and grow globally aware, creatively inspired, intelligently responsible students within Texas Tech College of Architecture.
In order to achieve awareness of architecture as a profession for women and men equally, Fe_arch operates a digital database and curates a series of college events. Annually, Fe_arch hosts events ranging from spoken, visual and celebrated works that provide a visible platform for the exceptional contributions made by selected Texas Tech College of Architecture students and architecture professionals across the nation. Continuously, Fe_arch maintains an online wiki website containing a database of inspiring women operating regionally and globally in architecture, a newsfeed of current discourse in the profession relating to women architects, and a network of professional organizations to further support student’s career in architecture. Through these resources and events, Fe_arch makes accessible the conversation of women in architecture with the vision of integrating complex differences.
Hovering around 30% |1|, Texas Tech University’s College of Architecture female student enrollment is unrepresentative of the equal gender distribution within the United States|2|. This discrepancy is repeated as a majority of architecture schools accredited through the National Architecture Accrediting Board host student bodies with less than 50% female students|3|. Yet, only ten of one hundred thirty two architecture schools report female population percentages as low or lower than our College|4|. An illustration of women absent in architecture is underscored through American Institute of Architects 2004 report stating that 20% US registered architects were women|5|. The Architecture field is not yet equally comprised of women and men, however women in the architecture practice is increasing as 44% of all 2011 conferred architecture degrees were earned by women|6|. Currently about forty US architecture schools retain gender equivalent student bodies, which if existed for Texas Tech University College of Architecture would equate to an additional 371 female students|7|. Fe_arch believes these additional female students are key to enriching the way we learn, teach, discuss, debate and practice architecture.
Fe_arch envisions a gender balanced architecture community for Texas Tech University College of Architecture where equal women to men graduate, become actively involved in the profession and academia, and together contribute to building future environments.
- |1| Texas Tech University College of Architecture Admission enrollment data 2000 - 2012
- |2| US Census Bureau. “Age and Sex Composition: 2010.” US Census Brief May (2011) C2010BR-03, by Lindsay M. Howden and Julie A. Meyer, US female equate to 50.8% of US total population
- |3| 2012 Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, Online Guide to Architecture Schools, Female Population Data http://www.acsa-arch.org/schools/guide-to-architecture-schools/search-the-guide
- |4| Ibid.
- |5| American Institute of Architects, “Diversity in the Architecture Profession.” National Associates Committee May 6 (2004)
- |6| National Architecture Accrediting Board “2011 Report on Accreditation in Architecture Education.” March (2012)
- |7| According to 2010 Texas Tech University College of Architecture total male enrollment number of 597
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