The Architects Foundation announces three additional recipients of the Diversity Advancement Scholarship

For immediate release:

Washington, D.C. – May 9, 2017– The Architects Foundation has selected three additional recipients for the 2017 Diversity Advancement Scholarship. Tiffany Chang of Bellevue, WA, Omer Gorashi of Reston, VA and Louis Suarez of Pittsburgh, PA, will each receive $4,000 each year for up to five years of study. The Diversity Advancement Scholarship program was developed to encourage diversity in the architecture profession.

The Architects Foundation awards the Diversity Advancement Scholarships annually to rising first- and second-year students from a minority background who intend to study in a NAAB-accredited architecture program. These scholarships are supported by the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) and, in the 2018-19 school year, the program will likely double its size, thanks to a 2016 gift of $1 million from the AIA. Two Diversity Advancement scholarships funded by Giving Moore, a foundation of Benjamin Moore & Co., were announced in April. Chang, Gorashi, and Suarez and will join 11 other students in the 2017-18 school year participating in the Foundation’s scholarship program.  

Tiffany Chang

Chang is a high school senior at Bellevue Christian School in Clyde Hill, Washington. A member of the National Honor Society, she has also been recognized as an AP Scholar. Chang has participated in the ACE (Architecture/Construction/Engineering) Mentor Program for the past three years, working with mentors from Freiheit & Ho Architects and MG2. She is proficient in Chinese (both Cantonese and Mandarin), and is working on becoming quadrilingual in Spanish.

Omer Gorashi

Gorashi is a senior at South Lakes High School. He is originally from Kosti, Sudan and was raised in Northern Virginia. He is passionate about social justice and global affairs, which has driven him to research housing for refugees. His favorite architect is AIA Gold Medal winner Moshe Safdie.

Louis Suarez

Suarez is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is currently a first year architecture student at Carnegie Mellon University. His student work reflects a sensibility to highly crafted images that use both analogue and digital techniques to create moving experiential spaces. Suarez is also an active member of his community, and has volunteered nearly 500 hours to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. He plans to continue moving his community forward as he embarks on his profession as an architect.

The scholarship jury, chaired by Foundation Board member James Walbridge, AIA, of Lincoln, NE, is comprised of a diverse group of teaching professionals and practitioners of the profession.  For more information about the Diversity Advancement Scholarship, please visit

About The Architects Foundation

The Architects Foundation celebrates architecture’s value by advancing tomorrow’s design leaders and preserving architectural treasures of the past. The Architects Foundation is positioning itself for new success, preparing to launch a momentous increase in our scholarship program, thanks to a recent gift of $1 million from the AIA.  By enhancing the program, the Foundation aims to attract and cultivate a diverse next generation of architects, and provide new opportunities to support the evolution of our profession. Visit  

About The American Institute of Architects

Founded in 1857, the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through over 200 state and local chapters, the AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit


Matt Tinder

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