As the 2012-13 WHR Architects Tradewell Fellow, Akshay Sangolli, a graduate Texas A&M architecture student, will work on some of the firm’s upcoming projects alongside some of the nation’s leading healthcare facility design professionals.
“The Tradewell Fellowship offers a very unique opportunity for someone particularly interested in healthcare facility planning and design,” said Charles Cadenhead, WHR Architects senior principal and Tradewell Fellow mentor. “Fellows gain broad experience during their year at WHR and many have stayed with the firm.”
In addition to working directly with WHR professionals and clients, Sangolli will receive career guidance from leaders in the healthcare industry and a network of past Tradewell Fellows. During his tenure, he will investigate a topic related to healing spaces design and with fellowship funding will present his findings at a national healthcare conference.
Sangolli was selected for the fellowship on the strength of his design portfolio, letters of recommendation and essays describing his design accomplishments and career goals.
His scholarly interests, he said, focus on three areas of health-care innovation: contextual and contemporary “green” design, promoting a proactive model of healthcare, and research-informed design for cutting-edge medical facilities.
“In the long term, I will explore how architecture can enhance human health, healing and well-being,” he said. “I hope to participate in improving the quality of the built environment and its implications on human life around the world, especially in much-neglected developing nations.”
More than merely a technological, energy-efficient measure, Sangolli sees "green" design as a useful means for creating successful healing spaces for recuperation and rehabilitation.
“Successful design,” he said, “draws on various sources, including strong education, deep cultural understanding, technical know-how and focused research interests.”
Though all design germinates from “free, fanciful” ideas, only empirical knowledge, he said, can transform such concepts into meaningful architecture derived from considered responses to program, climate, technology, culture and site.
Sangolli’s innovative design for a downtown Austin, Texas senior urban housing facility earned a merit award in the American Institute of Architects’ 2011 New Urban Models for Aging competition.
He also participated in a 48-hour charrette at a November 2011 Healthcare Design conference in Nashville, helping produce a design concept for a holistic healing center that impressed a jury of design professionals.
Sangolli is the latest in a long line of Aggie designers to earn the Tradewell Fellow honor.
Previous fellows from Texas A&M include: