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JRD Scholarship Donation Info
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The Jean Roth Driskel Scholarship Donation Info

“Receiving this scholarship broadens my horizons and allows me the ability to thrive as a student and a future architect. I am so honored to be given this opportunity to do so!” Abriannah Aiken, fall 2019, USC


Established in 1971 to honor Jean Roth Driskel, our first woman AIA Pasadena-Foothill Chapter President and the third woman to be elected to the College of Fellows.  The scholarships are awarded annually to two architectural students: one a Community College student and one a University student, in recognition of their dedication, enthusiasm, and ability in the field of architecture. In recent years, National AIA has contributed an additional scholarship to each of the recipients.  Since 1990 the fund has been a component fund of the California Community Foundation (CCF), an established 501(c)(3) organization.  Our program is ably administered by the Chapter Scholarship Committee.  Since 2001, they have interviewed 310 students and awarded 39 scholarships.  This program has contributed to AIA Pasadena-Foothill’s exceptional reputation for supporting emerging professionals, honored four years ago by AIA California Council.     

Click HERE to donate! Donors will be recognized on the Chapter website and at major Chapter events.

You may also send checks payable to the California Community Foundation, noting that the donation is for the Jean Roth Driskel Scholarship Fund. Checks should be mailed to:

California Community Foundation
221 S. Figueroa St., Suite 400
Los Angeles, CA 90012

The Jean Roth Driskel Scholarship Fund is a component fund of the California Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity. Contributions to the California Community Foundation represent irrevocable gifts subject to the legal and fiduciary control of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.


The Need is CRITICAL 

  • Our fund had dwindled to just over $50,000 by October 2019. As of mid-July 2020 we’ve been able to increase the balance to over $130,000 with the generous support of our donors.  By forming a fund-raising committee, we continue to grow the fund allowing us to increase the scholarships from two at $1,500 in 2019 to two at $5,000 in 2020, while protecting the principle. Our goal is to reach $200,000 by the end of 2020, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Jean Roth Driskel Scholarship.
  • In recent decades, the cost of college has soared – 4 times to as much as 10 times what we may have paid.  With cost, student debt has reached alarming levels.
  • In the period from 1971 to 2016 (45 years), the cost (per year for tuition, fees, room and board) of U.S. private, non-profit 4-year colleges grew at a rate of 2.6 times inflation; similarly, public 4-year colleges grew at a rate of 2.4 times the rate of inflation.  Source:
  • We are witnessing a substantial shortage of architects due to “Baby Boomer” retirements, the cost of architecture school, modest wages in the profession and the lengthy process to licensure.
    •  A survey of local schools shows a 5-year B Arch may cost $200,000 to over $350,000 (tuition, fees, board and room).
    • Enrollment for first-year architecture students has declined by nearly 20% over the past five years. Source:  NAAB.
    • In 23 years, the number of architectural programs has shrunk from 155 to 100.  The number of architectural students in that period has shrunk from 35,500 to 24,500 students.
    • In a survey conducted March 2020 of 17 architectural firms (large, small, downtown, and suburban) the average starting salary was $50,000 for a recent graduate.  Researching LA region living expenses for a recent graduate in a studio apartment, with a $75,000 student loan, the annual cost is $62,500, a financial gap of $12,500.
    • The average age to licensure is 33. Only about six in 10 students who graduate from NAAB accredited schools eventually get their license.
  • In the past decade (2009 to 2018), the number of licensed architects increased 13% from approximately 102,000 to 115,316, an increase of approximately 12,300. Source: NCARB.  According to AIA, 25,000 additional licensed architects will be needed in the next decade.

In recognition of the 50th Anniversary of the Scholarship program, and to increase our scholarships to $5,000 each, our goal is to increase the fund to $200,000 in 2020.   

Consider: “Education … plays an out-sized role in people’s lives.  It can vastly outweigh the effects of family and local community on people’s beliefs, values, tastes, and life paths.  For the individual student, the investment in time and money, not to mention stress, can be enormous.” 

The New Yorker, September 30, 2019, page 75.


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