University of Texas at Austin
School of Architecture
Iker Gil (Chair)
Robert L. Wesley
I am a Nigerian-American woman, born and raised in Houston, Texas. I am currently in my third year of a five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree at the University of Texas at Austin. My plans are to graduate and add to the small but growing number of Black, female architects. As an aspiring architect, my goal is to revolutionize the way we think about cities, especially in regard to our most vulnerable communities. We live in a world where immigrants are fleeing their countries due to war or persecution, where the disenfranchised struggle to secure basic human needs, where discrimination continues to plague even our most developed countries, and the consequences of climate change threaten us all. I believe the built environment and design play a significant role in solving these most pertinent issues. So instead of aiming to see how high we can build, I look to the ground to assess how we might address the sociocultural and climatic aspects of our communities and bring people together.
Temi Osanyintolu has shown true dedication and commitment toward her education. She has a passion and devotion to explore new emerging sustainable models in architecture.Suhash Patel, Lecturer, University of Texas at Austin, School of Architecture
I am honored to be a recipient of the SOM Foundation Robert L. Wesley Award. With it, I feel more able to complete my degree at the University of Texas School of Architecture and explore invaluable opportunities in the study abroad and residency programs. Exposure to real-world environments outside of the classroom and studio is essential to understanding how architecture relates to the human experience, and with this knowledge, I can be better suited to support communities in need.
The Robert L. Wesley Award has been beyond generous in providing support to underrepresented students in the field of architecture. The monetary award allowed me to participate in a prestigious study abroad program. I spent the Fall of 2021 in Copenhagen studying architecture, exploring Danish society, and meeting so many new people. The experience was eye-opening in so many ways and has truly enriched my design education. I would have been unlikely to participate without the SOM Foundation’s financial support. That said, perhaps what I most valued from the fellowship was the mentorship program. Every couple of months, the fellows gathered on Zoom with our mentorship panel and were able to talk about ourselves, our backgrounds, and our aspirations, as well as express our concerns and our doubts. Our mentorship panel was composed of design professionals with various backgrounds, educations, and practices, a detail that felt so comforting to me. I was able to learn so much from the stories of our mentors, and their insight really opened up the way I thought about my future. I am so grateful to the SOM Foundation for this experience and I believe it has given me access to a vast network of resources and support as I continue to explore what architecture and design mean to me.
This design for an Amtrak station and Deep Time Museum attempts to adhere to the site conditions of the small west Texas town of Marfa while acknowledging the geographic landscape and the time it took to create it. As passengers disembark from the train they step onto a timeline that marks Earth’s formation and geological evolution and learn how these transformations created a dynamic landscape. The tower symbolizes human activity on Earth—how we detach ourselves from the Earth and its processes in order to advance our own innovations. Here, visitors are asked to admire the history of our Earth, hoping to spark action to combat climate change. © Temi Osanyintolu.
Urban Plant Center
The Urban Plant Center aims to create spaces using a system of stacking wooden beams. The diverse programming of offices, greenhouses, restrooms, and an eatery are separated into two categories—public and private—that are distinguished by the transparency of their street-facing walls. Public spaces have increased transparency and private spaces have decreased transparency resulting from the differences in dimensions of the wooden beams. The dynamic use of wood brings something visually unique to the Austin cityscape but with an air of warmth and welcoming necessary for a place of nature, learning, and gathering. © Temi Osanyintolu.
Ribbon Park is a proposal for an East Austin park in the time of COVID-19. The proposal utilizes the existing trees and body of water as a central focus for the park’s programs. The sports field can be repurposed for future community projects, local events, and emergency pop-up clinics/shelters. To promote wellness, the majority of the park structures are open-air. Natural ventilation and a decreased amount of contact surfaces lessen the spread of disease. Wide pathways allow for distanced passing throughout the park, and frames lining the main path are spaced six feet apart to subtly reinforce spatial awareness and help visitors visualize the distance between one another. Austin’s homeless population continues to grow with the cost of living in the city which pushes out the poor to make more space for the affluent. The proposal for a Homelessness Resource Center staffed with social workers would help connect individuals with the informational and living resources they need. Opportunities to socialize, stay clean, and access local resources make Ribbon Park an essential part of tying this community together. © Temi Osanyintolu.
University of Texas at Austin
School of Architecture
is a Nigerian-American woman born and raised in Houston, Texas. She is currently in her third year of a five-year Bachelor of Architecture degree at the University of Texas at Austin. Osanyintolu is proud to add to the small but growing number of Black, female architects. As an aspiring architect, Osanyintolu’s goal is to revolutionize the way we think about cities, especially our most vulnerable communities. She believes the built environment will play a significant role in solving our most pertinent issues—in a world where immigrants are fleeing their countries due to war or persecution, where the disenfranchised struggle to secure basic human needs, where discrimination continues to plague even our most developed countries, and the consequences of climate change threaten us all.