Outgoing Dean Michelle Addington. Image courtesy of UTSOA
Dean Michelle Addington of the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture (UTSOA) has announced she will step down at the end of the academic year after a successful term as head of one of America’s leading public design schools.
Addington has held the position since 2017 and is considered an expert in the field of sustainability studies, having previously held academic positions at Yale and Harvard GSD before joining UTSOA. Her efforts to lead a range of initiatives have resulted in the successful hiring/mentorship of award-winning faculty, increased collaboration between academia and professional practice, expansion of the Race and Gender in the Built initiative school environment and an increase in research output among faculty. members.
The school mentions that it has been instrumental in leading, What starts here, a fundraising campaign that has raised over $20 million and has been responsible for securing some $17 million in grants since then. His efforts have helped make UTSOA one of the highest rated architecture programs in the nation. He also now regularly has “one of the most diverse incoming freshman classes in America” and recently received a $1 million gift honoring pioneering black alumni and architect John S. Chase who helped establish two new permanent endowments targeting recruiting. of HBCU graduates in Austin.
Addington will remain in the city to oversee UT Austin’s campus sustainability plan and strengthen ties between the university and local government. In a letter sent to the UTSOA community, she explained: “While I came to UT five years ago with expertise in energy conservation systems and behaviors, I have learned so much about the areas wider urban and regional, as well as distant impacts and influences. It’s time for me to bring it all together and do what I do best.”
Trained as a mechanical/nuclear engineer who worked at NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center and for EI DuPont de Nemours before pursuing her studies and career in architecture, the engineer/architect/university leader shared via LinkedIn: “I will step up dedicating my next chapter to climate change mitigation through the built environment. More talk, more bluster – we need to make a tangible difference now.