Majors & Minors

Architecture & Design Studies


Thomas Howe

Chair and Professor

Thomas Howe

Chair and Professor

Southwestern has offered a minor in architecture and design since 1985, with Prof. Thomas Howe (art historian, archaeologist, design teacher) providing lecture courses in architectural history and studios introductory architectural design, and Prof. Ron Geibel (ceramist) offering courses in design, with projects in industrial and landscape design.

To date the program has a 100% acceptance rate of getting students admitted to design graduate schools in fields of architecture, interior design, industrial design, landscape architecture, construction contracting, engineering and urban planning, and students have gone to graduate schools at Harvard, Yale, U.T. Austin, Clemson, UCLA, Univ. Houston, Univ. of Arizona, U.T. Arlington and Washington Univ., St. Louis. 

Acquiring a liberal arts B.A. may add about one year to attaining a professional degree as opposed to entering directly into a B.Arch program, but liberal arts background has a record of endowing design professionals with greater depth and flexibility throughout their careers. Because of their liberal arts background, many SU graduates progress in their profession much faster than those with just a B.Arch degree, and many have found themselves design project leaders at leading firms or independent within ten years of graduation. 

Students major in some other field that can enhance a design career, including almost any of the humanities, business, sciences, mathematics or studio art. Most SU graduates apply for M.Arch first degree programs. Students should major in any other discipline which appeals to them.


Featured Alumni Stories

Julien Meyrat ’98

Building Dreams

Southwestern alum Julien Meyrat ’98 is a senior designer at global design and architecture firm Gensler.

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Architecture & Design Studies News

Professor of Art History Thomas Howe

The Professor Chronicles: Thomas Noble Howe

Get to know the professor of art and art history as well as coordinator general of the Restoring Ancient Stabiae Project in Italy.

Lois Durant ’20

The Environmental Diaries

Environmental studies major and architecture and feminist studies double minor Lois Durant ’20 shares her journey in environmental policy in the non-profit sector.

Professor of Art and Art History and Chair of Art History Thomas Noble Howe on site in Italy.

Preserving the Past for Posterity

Professor Thomas Howe leads SU students on a study-abroad experience in ancient Stabiae.